Circumstance

Circumstance: (n) a condition connected with or relevant to an event or action

“Considering the circumstance…”

Damn it, don’t lie to me. You’re not really going to let me consider my circumstance. You might like to pretend you will, so that I will
consider yours.

The true breath of fresh air which enlivens the human brain is that second place cannot be excused away due to circumstance.

We might get sympathy. Some people might even agree that we got an unfair shake.

But once they walk away from us and talk to others, they will call second place what it is–a loss.

The time to consider circumstance is before an endeavor is begun, not after it’s been anemically performed.

It’s not so much that we love winners as it is that we hate losers.

If someone is able to lose with the understanding that there was a personal deficit, we’re willing to allow them into the competition again to acquire a second chance.

Even Apollo Creed gave Rocky an additional crack at the title, because Rocky did so well the first time and did not pretend he won. (Please forgive the obscure reference to a forty-year-old movie.)

What can I do to convince myself that pleading “circumstance” only makes me look like I’m needy instead of letting people know that I am fully aware that I fell short and am prepared to change things up?

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Bout

Bout: (n) a short period of intense activity of a specified kind

Everything can’t be a struggle.Dictionary B

There are certain people I’m acquainted with who spend most of their time sighing or frowning over the simple task set before them.

They know these responsibilities are coming.

They are familiar with them.

But for some reason or another, they think it makes them more adult to be cranky.

But somewhere along the line, we have to produce some joy–otherwise we have no strength. The absence of strength is the introduction of anemic effort.

Not everything is a “bout:”

  • You don’t have a bout of doing the laundry.
  • It is not a bout of cooking dinner.
  • Buying Christmas presents should not be a bout.

But we can probably agree that calling it a bout with cancer is in order.

Maybe even a bout with insomnia.

I will give you a bout with diarrhea.

The actual way that we show our maturity is by proving that the journey we’ve been on has given us some skill to approach our difficulties … without a grimace.

 

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Apologetics

dictionary with letter A

Apologetics (n.): reasoned arguments defending a theory or belief.

Living in a world that wants to debate the power of argument and argue over the rules of debate, I find myself retreating in self-defense.

It isn’t that I’m afraid to make a stand, nor that I lack evidence of a personal nature on what I hold dear. It’s just that when I am limited to the power of mere articulation, I lose the majority of the beauty of my human emotion and faith.

We are not better people when we are convincing. For after all, Adolph Hitler was able to make a case for his Super Race.

What makes us viable and appealing is the stream of evidence which oozes from our pores as the proof of what lies within.

So a politician who is jaded and angry off-camera fails to convince me of his or her sincerity.

A corporation which revels in its slick advertising, capturing a market, is not nearly as appealing to me as one which takes responsibility for inferior products and sets in motion the research to improve.

And the religionist who mocks the simplicity of a child-like faith in favor of a theology with so many twists and turns that it produces a pretzel logic is not the mind of God to my weary ears.

Here’s what I want to know:

  • Can you tell me the truth?
  • Is it working for you?
  • What can you share with me that confirms that assertion?

Many centuries ago, a blind man who was healed by an itinerant preacher was mocked by the intellectuals of his day because the so-called miracle didn’t make any sense nor follow any acceptable form of religious practice.

His response was precious.

He said, “I don’t know about all your opinions and learned ways. All I know is that once I was blind, but now I see.”

Amen.

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Apologetic

dictionary with letter A

Apologetic (adj.) admitting and showing regret for a wrongdoing.

In my opinion, saying “I’m sorry” is only effective when it comes from the lips of an explorer instead of a captured criminal.

We live in a time when people do and say ridiculous things, and then are compelled by our media to stand in front of a microphone and mouth some sort of anemic confession of weakness, waiting for the news cycle to lose interest in them.

If they don’t do this, we assume they’re perniciously evil and should be shunned from the next barn-raising.

Yet an apology is probably the most powerful tool in human relationships. It is the glue that holds pieces together which are mismatched, but still strong because of the bond.

Still, an apology, like any other misused virtue, becomes nearly sinister when it is coerced and turned from the beauty of repentance to the aggravating death-march to compliance.

It reminds me of the parents who stand around and require their child to say “thank you” when you give the little one a candy bar. You become the victim of their insistence as the child, with chocolate dripping down his cheek, reluctantly mutters what is assumed to be words of gratitude.

How can we teach ourselves that an apology does not diminish, but rather, accentuates, our status?

I don’t know.

But there is a wise adage which states, “Except you repent, you will perish.”

To the human mind that seems unlikely. So what does perish?

What we lose in this transaction, because we have not used our own cognition to apologize, is the peace of mind and trust we have in others to be sincere–which can cause us to become angry, unforgiving souls … if we don’t believe them.

 

 

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Antler

dictionary with letter A

Antler: (n) one of the branched horns on the head of an adult (usually male) deer, which are made of bone and are cast off annually and regrown.

As is often the case, I will now expound on issues I know absolutely nothing about, but still manage to muster an anemic opinion.

I have gone hunting but am timid to mention it because around those who actually have a “Daniel Boone mystique,” I would appear to be less than a novice and probably considered a “dandy.”

But hanging around a lot of people who have hunted animals with antlers, I have discovered that the male of our species has succeeded in projecting its own insecurity about the penis onto the head decoration of the local, assumed macho, deer.

So supposedly, it is much better to shoot one of these animals with seven points than it is one with five.

I would assume the deer have obviously learned not to be so presumptuous to tout their prowess of being “boneheads,” knowing full well that come spring, they will have to start all over again.

Actually, to the deer a set of antlers is very similar to the savings account of the average American family–just when you think you’ve got a good start, it falls off.

So I do not think there really is “antler envy” among this deer species. It is something we attribute to them because of our male insecurity about our own growth potential.

Maybe we’d be better off if “it” fell off every year … and had to grow back.

 

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Anemia

dictionary with letter A

Anemia: (n.) a condition marked by a lack of red blood cells or hemoglobin in the blood, resulting in pallor and weariness.

When my doctor told me I was anemic, I fired back at her that she had a funny nose and big ears before I realized that she was just giving me the results of my blood test.

It seems that this exam pointed out that I didn’t have enough red cells doing their thing in my body.

She wanted to rectify this by having me take iron supplement pills.

Now, let me tell you–not only was this treatment fairly expensive, but it created constipation, which was only occasionally relieved by the painful arrival of bowel movements that resembled lumps of coal.

At my next appointment, she asked me if I felt better since beginning the iron supplements. I had to be honest and tell her that it was difficult to tell since it seemed that I had replaced one problem with another.

Without becoming too philosophical, that is often the case in modern life. In a noble attempt to improve one dilemma, we create a counter-irritant, which we convince ourselves is not as bad as the original in order to justify our actions in alleviating the former problem.

Well, back to my anemia.

Quietly, against her orders, without her permission and knowledge, I lessened the dose on the iron and loosened my difficulty. It was such a relief that I decided to stop taking the iron pills, and tell her that I did, so as to make her happy and keep myself…well, let us say, comfortable.

The truth is, I felt no more energy taking the iron pills than I did without them.

I just happen to be one of those big men who moves fairly slowly, still gets things accomplished, but looks rather ugly in the process.

So the next time somebody tells you you’re anemic and they’re not referring directly to your choices, lovemaking or personality, be fully aware that iron supplements are a two-edged sword.

And one of the edges of the sword really hurts during bathroom time.

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