Boycott: (v) to withdraw from commercial or social relations

“Don’t make waves.”

I heard this all the time as a young person. Since I was raised in land-locked Ohio, it was very simple to comply.

It was also made easier by the fact that anyone who stepped beyond the boundaries of acceptability was quickly ostracized from the general flow. Yet issues always arrived which demanded immediate attention, consideration, deliberation and action.

Sometimes we must boycott stupidity. Otherwise, it grows faster than weeds.Dictionary B

Growing up in my town, prejudice was accepted, gossip was honored, chauvinism was the household norm and music was deemed raucous and evil until it gained a great respectability through financial solvency.

I had to make decisions:

What did I think about civil rights?

What did I think about the war in Viet Nam?

What did I think about the notion that “a woman’s place was in the home?”

These were dangerous questions. If they were posed in public, you were viewed as a troublemaker. If you offered an opinion other than the standard fare, you were basically dubbed “anti-American.”

It took me many years to learn how to boycott the inhibiting doctrines and platitudes which permeated my little town.

Today it’s easier for me. Matter of fact, I can suggest several things we should boycott immediately:

  • The word “bitch”
  • “Baby Mama”
  • Disinformation
  • Racial stubbornness
  • Too much violence
  • Chauvinism in all its forms
  • Gender wars
  • Talk of “culture”

For after all, culture is just another way to introduce stereotypes, which invite prejudice.

I wish I had been more brave when I was a “Buckeye Boy.”

But I guess I can do my penance … by learning what to boycott around me today.


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Bask: (v) to revel in and make the most of something pleasing.Dictionary B

Intimidation enforced for the purpose of demanding imitation:

In other words, if a flag held by a soldier in uniform comes streaming by, there is a certain protocol that is supposed to be enacted by me–and preferably some emotion to go along with those well-rehearsed actions.

  • Take your hat off
  • Bow your head
  • Sprout some tears
  • Put your hand on your heart
  • Mumble a prayer

Only then will you be convinced that I am are a true patriot.

If you pray for peace or work to keep our soldiers out of harm’s way so they can return to their families after their due diligence, you just might be considered anti-American.

I love to bask–but I find it difficult to bask in the glories of the past.

There is so much beauty available. We don’t need to worship a history book, a symbol, a Bible or a creed which can be cold and leave us chilly.

Why can’t we develop a faith that births new blessings every day, and fills our hearts with such hope that removing a hat, bowing a head and speaking a prayer is spontaneous?

Bask in the glory.

I don’t want to bask anymore in the glory of what America once was, but join with my fellow citizens to keep it glorious, so that the memories of our freedom are fresh instead of arranged in the pages of the history books.

I want to bask in the glory of a God who loves me and have that sensation sweep over my soul instead of listening to how some apostle 2000 years ago was impressed enough by his mission to become a martyr.

Yes, it is the responsibility of those who are living to keep beauty vibrant, so it is not a memory that we have to conjure and thrust into prominence, but instead becomes the showers of blessing and the sunshine of our reality. 

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Amber Alert

dictionary with letter A

Amber Alert: (n) an emergency response system that disseminates information about a missing person (usually a child) by media broadcasting or electronic roadway signs.

All right. Get ready to buy me the T-shirt.

I guess it should read, “I am an unfeeling, anti-American, cynical unbeliever.”

Maybe it’s because I’ve done some follow-up on the concept of Amber Alerts. Even though there are many television shows that make hay off of children being abducted by strangers who torture and murder them, most of the kidnapping of little ones in our country is done by either the mother or the father, who no longer love each other and have decided to turn the child into the hunk of meat which they steal from the barn and hustle away through the woods.

If it weren’t so sad and pathetic, it would nearly be comical. We have actually created a system of marriage in this country which at least half of the time ends up in divorce, while contending that when it comes to the realm of the children, the couple is still together–even though they’ve moved on to other relationships, and now, because of human nature, are trying to prove to the children that this person is now their enemy and how much better off they would be if they didn’t have that rotten sperm donor or womb carrier.

Did you follow that?

In other words, like we always do in this country, we think we can establish a family, destroy it, pretend that it still exists, and then act alarmed when one of the parents steals the child, which sends out an Amber Alert and makes everyone concerned about their own offspring, when it really is just a Hatfield and McCoy feud.

There are exceptions, and for that reason, the Amber Alert should not be removed from our everyday lives.

But keep in mind–most of these are people who are fighting with each other, who once made love and produced a child, who has become at times little more than a bargaining chip.

Here’s the real Amber Alert, and may it sound out over the airwaves and be flashed on the freeways:

If you’re going to have children, try to keep your marriage together, and if you don’t stay together, please remember–and Solomon was wise enough to know this:

You can’t cut a kid in two.


by J. R. Practix

dictionary with letter A

Abolish:   v. to formally put an end to a system, practice or institution

That’s a strong word. Matter of fact, as I sat down and thought about it, the only “abolish” I ever heard of was slavery.

  • I personally would like to abolish fat grams.
  • I would like to abolish calories.
  • I would like to abolish ignorance that tries to pass itself off as comedy.
  • I would like to abolish about seventy-eight pounds off my body.
  • I would like to abolish some of the decisions made by my children in the name of free choice.
  • I would like to abolish some of the choices made by me when I was childish, in the pursuit of some hippie philosophy.
  • I would like to abolish the parliamentary procedure which seeps into our grown-up world and makes us feel like we’re really adult but ends up just halting progress.
  • I would like to abolish political parties so that individual candidates could run, and since we didn’t already know the talking points, we would have to listen to what they had to say.

But none of those are as strong as abolishing slavery was.

How about this one?

I would like to abolish all the foolhardy people who are talking about legalizing mind-altering drugs simply based on economic convenience, with no aforethought about what might cause some young person to become involved with these deadly chemicals, lending themselves to other even more deadly chemicals.

I guess there are a lot of things I’d like to abolish. But the problem with “abolish” is that you find out that merely stating your case is not enough, and as in the American Civil War, you end up squaring off and fighting to the death over the issue.

I’m not sure what I’m willing to die for. Certainly not abolishing fat grams (although the little boogers probably have a plan for MY demise).

Abolish is a strong word. I guess instead of abolish, I would just like to hear some intelligent dialogue on many of the issues of our day instead of hearing pundits portray their platform as they pontificate their principle.

Yes, I would like to hear an intelligent conversation about abortion, capital punishment, civil rights, global warming and nuclear proliferation, without being handed a pamphlet listing the ten reasons why the other side is anti-American.

It was a good thing to abolish slavery.

Who knows? Maybe it would be a good thing to abolish calories. But if you stand up to abolish something, you’d better be ready to fight.

That’s scary crap.