Bad-tempered

Bad-tempered: (adj) easily annoyed or made angry.Dictionary B

During a teeny, tiny length of time in my journey, I presumptuously decided that I was somewhat qualified to offer counsel to other people.

Yes, I understand how foolish that truly is, but at the time, I found it to be magnanimous and perhaps even beneficial.

One day a gentleman came into my office. (Well, it wasn’t exactly my office. It was a back room where I had placed a desk, barely qualifying it.)

He sat down and told me that his wife and friends demanded that he come to counseling because they claimed he was “bad-tempered.” He looked at me, wide-eyed, with some crimson in his cheeks, and said, “I don’t know where they get the idea that I’m bad-tempered. I just won’t put up with any shit.”

There you go. There is the definition of bad-tempered.

This is why we live in a society which is always on the verge of a snit. It has become the common belief that we are not supposed to “put up with shit.” Even among those who are so prim and proper that they would not use the word shit–they will not tolerate doo-doo.

I would call it the first rule of being a human being: I will certainly need to put up with some shit. It’s what happens next that makes the difference,

  • Do I fight back?
  • Do I object?
  • Do I ignore?
  • Do I side-step the interference and proceed?
  • Do I listen long enough to find out if there’s some constructive criticism?

Yes, the definition of bad-tempered is the notion that we are born to fight back and not put up with shit.

Even our birth should have clued us in on how ridiculous this is: squeezing out of a tiny opening with no air in our lungs, covered in blood and slapped to get us going–that should have told us that this earthly experience will be peppered with some difficulty.

 

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Bad-mouth

Bad-mouth: (v) to criticize (someone or something); speak disloyally of.Dictionary B

  • Tongue-in-cheek
  • Satire
  • Sarcasm
  • Cynical
  • Jaded

Now, each one of these words is probably considered to be its own entity, but I would contend that what we have here is a descending process toward losing one’s faith.

Because somewhere along the line, joking about the need for change and beginning to just bad-mouth humanity because you’ve abandoned all passion for the race are two quite different things.

Maybe in my own simple way, I could clarify my meaning by giving you definitions for each of these steps in this decline:

  1. Tongue-in-cheek: humorously pointing out a contradiction in our philosophy which shows a need for change.
  2. Satire: comparing that little piece of hypocrisy to previous hypocrisies in a jocular way.
  3. Sarcasm: similar to satire, except accompanied by more of a sneer, a jeer or even a leer.
  4. Cynical: sharing an angry humor over the futility of human effort to achieve anything of quality, while portraying a nasty edge
  5. Jaded: a loss of love for fellow-humans, which also causes one to feel unloved.

When you live in the monkey cage, it is alright to joke about the odor or maybe even the over-dependence on bananas–as long as you freely admit that you are contributing to the stink, and certainly possess the same addiction to the fruit.

 

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Badminton

Badminton: (n) a game with rackets in which a shuttlecock is played back and forth across a net.Dictionary B

My parents were so conservative that they didn’t allow us to refer to it as a “shuttlecock.”

They felt that was inappropriate.

Although they certainly wanted me to play badminton (which I found out later was due to the fact that it was so cheap to buy and maintain, and that no net was really necessary–you could just hit it over a clothes line) they were not pleased with the name given to the..well, what they called the “birdie.”

Of course by the time I got into high school, the word birdie made us giggle.

Without reservation, I will tell you that I basically hated the game. There was no skill involved in it unless you weighed about thirty pounds and were willing to run great distances brought about by the erratic flying of the shuttlecock. (Now I’m just saying it to rebel against my training.)

And it was very difficult to hit the thing right on its little nose, where it would fly straight. And then, upon striking it with all your might it would barely ascend five feet into the air before crashing onto the ground to avoid further abuse.

I was a big boy, so I normally found myself taking the tiny racquet and flailing in the air, and then making contact with the birdie sideways, on its wings, therefore having it fall. useless and dead.

I once saw a badminton tournament, and people seemed to know how to hit the thing and make it soar a great distance. But I must be honest–I had no curiosity whatsoever to ask them how they achieved this feat.

Badminton, like so many other things from my youth, was soon abandoned … and even more quickly forgotten.

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Badly

Badly: (adv) in an unsatisfactory, inadequate or unsuccessful wayDictionary B

As a young man, I recall walking off a football field, having just been trounced by our opponent, 64-nothing. Even though I was fully aware that the idea was totally mythical, I still yearned for the earth to open up and swallow me.

The following Monday at football practice, the coach came in with a smile and said, “I’ve been thinking about Saturday’s game, and truthfully, boys, you didn’t do that badly.”

He then began to recite four or five general areas wherein we had stumbled along, culminating with the idea, “Well, at least no one got hurt.”

I know he meant well, but it was the worst thing he could have done. Because the word “badly” is good if it’s used by itself to connote that we’re fully aware that what just transpired should be taken out behind the barn and shot.

When you add onto it “not too…” it transforms it into a horrible excuse for an excuse.

Which, by the way, is inexcusable.

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Badlands

Badlands: (n) extensive tracts of heavily eroded, irretrievable land with little vegetation often found in the Southwestern U.S.Dictionary B

As much as I believe that God is a person, during my journey here on Earth, I value Him mostly as a concept.

What I mean is that since I am living in an atmosphere which determines quality by results, I must look for mortal conclusions instead of insisting on eternal ones.

I’ve learned this from dealing with conservatives and liberals.

In both parties there are certain issues, regions or individuals they have deemed “bad”–dare I say, irretrievable?

So sitting in San Francisco, talking to some of my more liberal acquaintances, I will relate to them about my journeys into Mississippi and Alabama as they roll their eyes and wonder what I could possibly hope to achieve by peddling my thoughts to the ignoramus.

In like manner, I have conversed with my conservative friends in Georgia, who heard that I was heading to Southern California, as they told me they would pray for me, hoping I would be able to do something to enlighten those “fruits and nuts” in the Golden State.

The greatest danger in the human experience is accidentally trying to transform one group of humans to divinity while forcing the remnant to live with the apes.

  • There are no badlands–just regions with a lack of vision.
  • There are no good lands–just territory where they use their talents.
  • There are no chosen people–just folks.

We will finally reach a sense of true spirituality when we take a hint from our Creator and stop living our lives peering at the outward appearance, and instead, begin to ascertain what is possible in the heart.

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Badger

Badger: (n) a native of WisconsinDictionary B

How fortuitous for me to actually find myself in Wisconsin, sharing with you about the badger.

The word actually has three definitions. Primarily it refers to a weasel-like creature which can be extraordinarily aggressive if cornered. Also, along with “a resident of Wisconsin,” it means to be so pesky that people find you annoying.

Honestly, I don’t find the people of Wisconsin to be anything like the badger. Actually they are much more like the other representation tied to the state–cheese.

Not cheesy, as in pretentious, but just a solid block of cheese–aged well, mellow and ready for you to take a slice if you so desire.

It’s not so much that different areas of the country are devoid of emotion, because on any given Sunday, you can go to Lambeau Field in Green Bay and the cheeseheads scream and holler for their team with amazing manic energy. They also do it down in Madison, for the college Wisconsin Badgers.

But when you spend at least seven months a year living in an ice box, it takes a while to thaw out. I have learned to be patient with Badgers–to never corner them and accuse them of being dormant.

Instead, I just take my time, give them their space, and allow them a chance to crawl out of their surroundings and to quietly sniff me.

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Bad Debt

Bad debt: (n) a debt that cannot be recovered.

“Free credit report dot com.”Dictionary B

I have never seen a time during my human history when there is such obsession with one’s credit report.

It used to be a subject whispered in the hallowed halls by those who were fairly confident that they had achieved acceptance in the realms of financial security but still occasionally wondered if their unknown credit score might someday, like a nasty asp, lurch up and bite them in the ass.

Now all we have to do is punch a few buttons and discover how well-accepted we are in the banking community.

As one who has had a very high credit score number and a very low one, I will tell you that neither numeral enhanced my being.

I didn’t become a better person when I soared to the heights of reverent dollar-wise security, nor did I become a devious devil when the same number plummeted, flirting with entering the gates of hell.

To me, it falls under the universal banner of what seems to be so important in our society today: shallowness.

  • Let’s not talk about important things because they’re too serious.
  • Let’s not consider our frailty because that’s too depressing.
  • And please, dear God, give me a number that confirms that I am four points higher than the son-of-a-bitch sittin’ next to me.

So rather than excelling at goodness, gentleness, kindness and creativity, we have selected to be evaluated by a mythical number that can be accidentally changed … through a clerical error entered by a high school graduate who got a D in data processing. 

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