Back-slapping

Back-slapping: (n) the action of effusively congratulating or encouraging someone, typically by slapping a person’s back.

What is praise-worthy?Dictionary B

I must be honest with you and tell you that I’m often disturbed by what we consider to be acceptable, and also what is granted accolade.

There’s a lot of back-slapping going on in America–mutual appreciation for matters that are certainly not advancing the cause of humanity.

Merely showing the reality of street violence, and using it as a premise for making numerous movies, is not cause for parading down red carpets and receiving cast-in-gold trophies.

Lying to the press, thinking you’re going to get away with some egregious error and then, for some reason or another, escaping the social guillotine, is not admirable.

And merely making decisions to disrupt your own life and demand that others accept your decision as completely normal without question is certainly an American right, but should not afford you a parade.

The only deeds that demand back-slapping happen when human beings step out of the jungle and attempt, through intellect, art, spirituality or hard work, to place our human family back into the Garden of Eden.

Perhaps that is too idealistic for some folks, or they feel that exposing the underbelly of the human creature is essential, but I am interested in the heart.

It is located just East of our soul.

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Baby Boom

Baby boom: (n) a temporary marked increase in the birth rate, especially the one following World War II.

I am a baby boomer.Dictionary B

As with many other titles that have been thrust upon me, I have no idea in hell what that means.

I will say this–I often smile when people say the young people today are growing up in “much more perilous, dangerous and tempting times.” Honestly, there was no place crazier than the United States of America circa 1959 through 1972.

We were killing off leaders like we were part of a drug cartel from Columbia, and drugs were surfacing everywhere, which people experimented with in order to do their part in assisting the FDA.

We were also periodically threatened with atomic bomb annihilation, just to make sure we didn’t get too comfortable in our new hush puppies.

The music was turbulent. If you were a young man you were constantly threatened with being drafted and sent over to bleed in a rice paddy, and the sexual revolution, which was on the drawing boards, required a rotation of guinea pigs.

We were angry, frustrated, disconsolate, overjoyed and unrepresented.

I spent my teen years in that period, and even though I was a church-going boy and not a member of the SDS, when I look back on it, my life was surrounded by dying principles which were tumbling down around me like the walls of Jericho.

I remember one day, my father was in the middle of a speech about personal responsibility and how I needed to take more of it, when suddenly he stopped speaking, stared off in the distance and never continued. I don’t know what crossed his mind–but I think that even though he was an old guy, he realized that everything he was sharing was being disemboweled in his lifetime, and he did not yet understand what the New Order would require.

The travesty of the baby boomers is that they remained babies.

  • So we never got the boom.
  • We never got the sense of accomplishment.
  • We all just eventually learned to sign on the dotted line, and started attending financial conferences on better mortgage rates.

But I am an oddball.

I have maintained a spark of revival, revolution and rejuvenation.

It causes me to be adequately dissatisfied … while on my way to find some moments of satisfaction.

 

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Aura

Aura: (n) the distinctive atmosphere that seems to surround and be generated by a person, thing, or place.

I once had an acquaintance who believed she could perceive “auras” around the people she met.dictionary with letter A

As our friendship grew, I realized that most of these colorations she “divined” were usually determined by whether she liked the person.

So much like humans.

Yet I must tell you, about 6 months ago I became very concerned that the aura around the American people seemed to be dark, dingy and depleted of any of the “red, white and blue” that makes us strong and valuable.

It worried me.

I didn’t want to be “mystical” or strange-minded, but I wanted to say something, do something or be something that would reawaken our gentle side and our willingness to believe in one another.

After all, politics seems to have drug us down to a complete halt and religion is a cantankerous debate among misfits.

A couple of months ago I sat down and wrote a book. You probably haven’t heard about it since neither CNN nor Fox News decided to cover its release.

I entitled the work “Within”–because I deeply believe that what stews around our innards eventually emanates in our actions.

What did I want the book to say? Many things, but three major themes:

  1. We have more in common than difference.
  2. Rather than being complex, we humans are delightfully predictable.
  3. And doing better is actually easier than continuing to falter.

Writing the book was an eye-opening, emotionally fulfilling experience.

I kept it short–matter of fact, the whole book can be read in less than an hour. And even though I don’t have the Madison Avenue publicity machine to make the public aware of this offering, I will continue to share it on as many different avenues as cross my path.

It would be my joy to reach the end of my life and know that I had an effect on the aura of the American people.

Yes. how wonderful to encourage us, building up our spirits again…to flower some color in our cheeks.

 

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Attain

Attain: (v) to succeed in achieving something that one desires and has worked for.dictionary with letter A

About two decades ago, everyone in America was persistent on finding out what my 5-year goal plan was. What did I want to attain?

Matter of fact, it reached almost cult proportions. People felt it was essential to have a vision for one’s life that spanned the next 5 years.

Honestly, I was greatly amused by the concept.

Considering the fact that I was fully aware that what would happen to me in the next 5 months, 5 weeks, 5 days and even 5 minutes was somewhat beyond my control, I found it a bit foolish to presumptuously plan 60 months in advance.

Yet in that time period, I was considered odd–perhaps irresponsible to not mix the Kool-Aid.

There were three things that happened to those individuals who followed the “strait and narrow” of the 5-year goal plan:

  1. Life immediately objected to their format.

(Apparently they didn’t include life in the meeting to draft the proposal, and life was rather gleeful about dashing their dreams.)

  1. 5-year goal plans often contradict other 5-year goal plans, creating conflict and confusion.

Yes, what I want to accomplish in 5 years may rob you of a couple of years of satisfaction.

  1. Those who persisted in this philosophy also found they had to make a choice: do I evolve with life, or do I dig my heels in and insist on requiring my demands?

It was messy business, and I will tell you that fortunately, only a small handful of ardent followers still remain.

But if you run across one, and he or she asks you what your 5-year goal plan is, respond this way:

“I plan on taking the next 5 years to feverishly work on my 10-year goal plan.”

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Appetite

dictionary with letter A

Ap·pe·tite (n): a natural desire to satisfy a bodily need, especially for food.

I stumbled across a conversation on the Internet between two women, arguing with one another about food.

Each of them had posted a picture of herself, so I had a quick visual of the combatants.

The extraordinarily slender woman was piously offering advice on better food choices that her “friend” might want to select to escape the rigors of obesity.

The “friend” in this case, who was a plump lady with a big smile, lamented in her diatribe about people who judge her by her appearance, offering way too much advice on how she could become more attractive and meet their standards.

It fascinated me in this day and age, when people are so convinced that we are “born a certain way,” that we excuse all of our prejudice against one another based on the necessity of consuming food.

For I will tell you this–because I am a fat man, I know more about calories, good food choices and what is healthy than twenty skinny people. I can tell you exactly how much I overeat, and how those particular carbyhydrates or sugars affect not only my plumpness, but also my mood.

There is no chubby person in America who couldn’t apply for a license to become a dietitian.

The sooner we realize that our appetites are primal, if not genetic, the better we will be able to address them, bringing them under our scrutiny if not our control.

I have the metabolism of a sloth, so I also have to fight to escape having the exercise regimen of the same creature. In other words, I would much rather hang from a tree by two claws than fall to the earth and run about hunting bananas.

Add to that the fact that I do not eat because I’m hungry. I tend to eat because the refrigerator has not yet been emptied. It seems to be my mission.

I don’t expect someone who’s thin and burns calories by looking at a book to comprehend this dilemma. But I do think one of the more cruel aspects of human prejudice is to squint at the weaknesses in others as we smirk at our own.

Appetites are what confirm that somewhere along the line we had a merger with the jungle. Addressing them, acknowledging a problem and controlling them is what confirms that we have a divine lineage.

 

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Anti-static

dictionary with letter A

Anti-static: (adj) of preventing the presence of static electricity or reducing its effect.

I will ask you in the forefront to please forgive this pensman for taking liberties with this word in order to climb up on my soapbox and postulate.

I know the word “anti-static” refers to electrical currents and the elimination of such activity, but I would like to transfer that notion to the general climate of static which is aggravating the potential sweet hum of peacefulness in our world today.

The Middle East is bound and determined to draw us into a premature Armageddon, so like little brats, we can once and for all prove there is a God by throwing such a severe tantrum that He must come and punish all of His children.

Not for me.

My message to President Obama, Congress and all those who would feel that they can live by the sword without suffering the curse of its blade, is very simple:

We should create a giant box for the Middle East and let them fight it out amongst each other until they grow tired of burying their children.

If we do not do this, the allure of war to please what can only be considered a damnable god, will prompt them, season upon season, to skirmish and hatch new rumors of mayhem.

For after all, we don’t discipline our children by entering into the scuffle and punching it out alongside them. And since we are all children of Earth, it stands to reason that it is ridiculous to try to correct our brothers and sisters by rolling in the dirt with them and trying to lay a haymaker.

So let me present this to you very succinctly:

Since we Americans have the military might and power to bomb the Middle East, might we have the same capability to surround them, refusing anything to go in or come out, and squeeze them with a gigantic world-wide siege, forcing them to the bargaining table, or causing them to no longer to provide food for their dinner table?

That’s right.

Nothing in or out.

Let them fight.

After all, they won’t kill any more than they already have, and if they do, let us realize that their motivation is not nearly as strong to destroy America and Europe as it is to punish their own religious families who don’t submit to every single precept of Koran law.

To do this, of course, we must quickly and intelligently wean ourselves off of the dastardly need for oil which trickles from such scoundrel surroundings.

I cannot honor my country for joining a war that is prophesied to be at the center of the end of the world. Even if you have no interest in the Bible, just consider it bad luck to pursue a faulty logic that places us anywhere near the epicenter of the superstitious conclusion of our planet.

Don’t go there.

We are not going to be able to stop the senseless slaughter because that execution is willed by the leadership of the people we are trying to save.

It is not in our best interest.

Dammit, it’s not in any interest, other than the spiritual ego of maniacs who have forgotten that God looks like people.

The best anti-static for this world is to refuse to leap, hop and jump in the direction of everything that goes bump in the night.

 

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Antipsychotic

dictionary with letter A

Antipsychotic: (n) a type of drug used to treat psychotic disorders.

I believe the old saying is that “fools rush in where angels fear to tread.”

I don’t know if that means that fools are careless, or angels are chicken shit.

But I do know that ever once in a while, it’s important to risk appearing foolish in an attempt to focus on something that’s important.

So playing the part of the fool, let me state bluntly that America is nuts.

I know that’s not a clinical word normally used by psychiatrists, but it does describe the mishap of activity that is being presently performed under adult supervision.

Religion, politics, entertainment and corporations have lost all sense of morality and even any compass for productivity, chasing down either imaginary dragons or unicorns in the enchanted forest.

There seems to be a national sense of neurotic.

Now, what is the difference between being neurotic and psychotic?

  • Neurotic is when you’re afraid that you’re going to go out on the street and get robbed, so you end up staying at home.
  • Psychotic is when you stay at home and have a visceral experience of being robbed by imaginary thieves named Imogene and Darnell.

Here’s my concern: neurotic people can become psychotic if their neurosis is not talked out.

I believe we’re already on the verge of finding imaginary enemies that are chasing us down instead of having the good cheer and wisdom to tackle simple problems in our everyday lives. So more than ever, people are being prescribed medication for conditions that should be handled among our peers with comedy and conversation.

Yes, if we stop talking to each other, only texting and posting on Facebook, the little demons will start crawling out of the closet and begin to gnaw on our ankles.

So let me be foolhardy and tell you that social networking, the Internet and cynicism are tempting us as a nation to leap from neurotic to psychotic. Then we scratch our heads and wonder why somebody would ever go into a school and shoot a couple dozen little kids.

I know we’re concerned about tragedies like this, but I’m much more worried about the loss of humanity, the missing link in our species that creates brotherhood instead of culture wars, and the rejection of a gregarious nature, forcing us back into our caves, where we scrawl on the walls, admiring only our own artwork.

We will become psychotic, and then will probably become so alarmed that we’ll prescribe a national antipsychotic for the water system if we don’t learn to deal with the neurotic notions that make us feel superior to each other and afraid to merely use our abilities the best we can.

 

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