Crooked

Crooked: (adj) dishonest, not straightforward

 

There are certain things you remember:

The first time you rode a rollercoaster.

Your initial encounter with peanut butter.

How about the premiere kiss?

An award given in front of an applauding audience.

An orgasm.

An amount of money that crosses your hands that’s more than y you can imagine.

But I also clearly remember the first time somebody called me “crooked.”

I was so pissed. I didn’t consider myself crooked. I thought I was being thrifty. I viewed my efforts as ingenious.

For you see, I checked into a motel room with three other friends. We could only afford the single rate, so I purchased it for me alone. Then the other three arrived, scurrying around the back of the establishment to my front door, laughing that we had pulled off our little decoy.

Matter of fact, I think we were still giggling, high-fiving each other, when there was a knock at the door. I quickly silenced everyone in the room and motioned for them to go into the bathroom. I would handle whatever the intrusion happened to be.

When I opened the door, there was the front desk clerk. He demanded entrance. I acted offended. “What do you want?” I asked.

In broken English, he clearly exclaimed, “You bring more people in room! You lie! You cheat!”

Not sure what else to do, I invited him in, thinking he would walk around the beds, and see nobody else in the space—never believing he would actually open up the bathroom. So when he headed in that direction, I had to decide whether to deter him or just let it play out.

He was too fast for me. He was already opening the door. The bathroom was empty. But he was a persistent young man. He quickly pulled back the shower curtain. There were my three friends, standing in the tub, trying desperately to imitate invisibility. Finally one of my buddies burst out laughing—frightened nerves.

The young desk clerk exclaimed, “You must leave room now!”

I reached for my wallet to offer him the extra funds that would cover the four of us, but he would have none of it.

“No money,” he said, pushing my wallet away. “You lie. You cheat. You go.”

He headed toward the door, and I spoke, hoping to rationalize my actions. “Listen, man,” I said, “we were just trying to save money. We’re just kids. We’re broke. You know?”

He turned, looked me right in the eyes and said:

“You not kids. You not broke. You crooked.”

He immediately stepped out of the room and disappeared, coming back five minutes later to stand next to our van, to make sure we loaded up and left.

As is often the case with a quartet of individuals, there were four different takes on the event: one scared, one acting like he wasn’t part of it from the start, one indignant—wanting to go buy a dozen eggs and pelt the place.

And then there was me.

I was quiet, chilled to my soul.

I was bruised by being called “crooked.”

I didn’t view myself as deceitful, just clever.

But I learned that night that clever is crooked if it’s not honest.

 

funny wisdom on words that begin with a C


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Croggy

Croggy: (n) Northern English and Midland English dialect for a ride on a bicycle as a passenger.

I’m always looking for the latest statement or question which is even more sad and desperate than the previous one I granted an award to for being most pitiful.

There have been many competitors.

Here are five of my favorites:

Shall we call them former wosers (a blending of winners and losers) until they were displaced?

  1. “Do you have a bandage I can borrow, because my wound is seeping pus?” (This one held for a LONG time.
  2. “I’m going to go vote because MY VOTE COUNTS.” (Hopeful, but tragic.)
  3. “Can I borrow a dollar? I want to buy a lottery ticket?” (Wah…)
  4. “Does anyone have any suggestions for really bad breath?” (Stay away.)
  5. “Why don’t people like me? Be honest.” (Can I email?)

As you can see, these are pretty heartbreaking.

But today I think I have found one to rival them:

“Can anyone give me a croggy?”

I now realize this is requesting a ride on a bicycle—not as the peddler, but as the rear passenger.

First, let me iterate that riding a bicycle as a form of transportation may seem inspirational but only until you come across the first hill—or even slight rise in the road.

Then it becomes exercise posing as progress.

BUT…did you hear me?…BUT to ask to ride on the back end of such a contraption, knowing that you aren’t contributing anything but weight and pain to the person who’s pedaling in front of you, has to be the worst position a human being can place him or herself in without having a kidney removed.

funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

 


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Afar

Words from Dic(tionary)

dictionary with letter AAfar: (adv.) at or to a distance: e.g. our hero traveled afar

Here is a word that exists just so we can truly appreciate the value of being near. After all, anything we would really want “afar” is not really worthy of being discussed, is it? And if we’re actually going to travel, clarifying it by using a medieval term like “afar” seems a bit pretentious, if not culturally gross.

Yes, it’s another one of those words which, if we actually utter it, when it comes out of our mouth, it sounds like we’re posing for a painting, hopefully being admired by onlookers for our continental use of the King’s speak.

I feel sorry for “afar.”

Maybe it deserves better. Maybe it should be admired for having four letters and balancing two vowels and two consonants. (Yet how often would such an award of appreciation be available?)

I’m afraid “afar” suffers from what most of us do: it is too old and when it tries to insert itself into contemporary situations, looks a trifle ridiculous.

So here’s to the word “afar,” which quite honestly, from this point on … will need to follow its own obvious advice.