Cuckoo Clock

Cuckoo clock: (n) a wall or shelf clock, often carved and decorated, that announces the hours by a sound like the call of the cuckoo

For a very brief season, I had some money.

I did not earn it. The finance was acquired through an inheritance.

It was annoying.

Money is like a parakeet you invite into your house and no matter how hard you try to shut out the sound of the tweeting, it abides.

No matter how much I attempted to envision my money as having a station at the bank, I kept trying to bring it home for the holidays.

Yes.

I wanted to spend it.

I especially wanted to buy things I would not normally buy, but would show others that in buying them, I expressed my opulence.

In everyday English, I wanted my money to brag for me.

On some days, I sat in my small office and thought about items I could purchase that would make me seem prosperous, worldly and well-traveled.

On one such occasion, a cuckoo clock came to mind.

I had always been enamored with them. The idea of a mechanism telling time while also having a little bird pop out of a door on the hour, singing a song to let me know that sixty minutes had passed, enchanted me. How adorable.

I became obsessed.

I quickly found out that they were expensive. But hell—wasn’t that the point?

I learned that the best ones came from Germany, so I suddenly became very patriotic and decided to “buy American.”

I found the best American-made cuckoo clock that was available to be purchased by a mortal such as myself.

It arrived, I opened it up, it looked beautiful, I read the instructions, had others read them with me, so we could all come to a consensus on how to get our cuckoo clock to cuckoo.

After all this was done, we hung it on the wall.

It never worked right. Not even once.

Oh, it would cuckoo—but it would cuckoo like it was cuckoo.

You know what I mean?

It was a clock that had a whim. Apparently, it disregarded the importance of time, and the bird came out to do its show whenever the clock felt like it should.

It still looked beautiful, but if people visited for more than an hour, they became aware that I had purchased a clock with a wacko bird.

 

funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

 

Cock

Cock: (n) a male bird

How should I handle this word? You see, everything I mention will come across as a double entendre.

Even the dictionary definition is “a male bird.” Where did your brain go on that one?

Some words just don’t have permission to be uttered in public. I even giggle inwardly when I hear a storyteller speaking to young children utter the term, “Cock-a-doodle-doo.”

A pundit, becoming extremely pungent, might say, “Cock and bull story.” I’m sorry. My brain is off and away.

I am not dirty-minded. But I do have dirty laundry laying around. And because of that, certain words, phrases and ideas cannot be spoken in front of me without my brain doing a childish tap dance.

I am fully aware that being so vulnerable as to share this with you, I run the risk that some of you, when hearing the word “cock,” may actually think of a rooster. In that case, I do not know whether to congratulate you for being pure, or pity you for being absent a bit of noble naughtiness.

But as for me and my self, I shall not speak “cock” nor can I hear “cock” without becoming twelve years old again, always prepared to burst into laughter over the sound of a fart.Donate Button

 

Bereave

Bereave: (v) to be deprived of a loved oneDictionary B 

I’m a silly goose (even though I’m not quite sure why that bird got crippled with such a characterization).

I’m a little embarrassed to admit it, but often I will be sitting alone and suddenly be overwhelmed with the remorse that will be felt by those around me at my passing.

I don’t know why I feel the right to project on them such a breakdown–but tears come to my eyes as I imagine them weeping over my demise.

Honestly, I cannot say that I get nearly as worked up about considering the death of another.

No, it is the absence of me on the planet that bereaves me.

I can’t imagine an Earth without my charming personality.

I’m reluctant to write this article, but having a certain anonymity due to the expansiveness of the Internet and my own obscurity … I assume I am fairly safe in maintaining this secret devotion to my own mortality.

Donate Button

Thank you for enjoying Words from Dic(tionary) —  J.R. Practix 

 

Bee

Bee: (n) an insect of a large group to which the honeybee belongsDictionary B

There certainly seem to be a lot of design flaws in Mother Nature.

I am not offering this as a criticism, nor do I think I could have done a better job stomping around the Universe.

It’s just that in the mortal brain, we have a tendency to seek sense where Nature only offers tension. The whole process is held together with tiny fibers, little branches, and maybe chewing gum and lint.

How it actually works is beyond our comprehension.

For instance, I would love to be friends with the bee.

I’ve heard of the good work they do.

  • I realize that they pollinate plants and flowers which keep us alive and allow us to eat, escaping starvation.
  • I am very favorable to honey, the by-product of their process.
  • They are colorful.

But then, they have this thing called a “stinger.” And because I do not want to be stung, I am tempted to kill them, and therefore be party to terminating their noble work, and in a sense, setting in motion my own suicide.

It’s really crappy.

Why couldn’t the bee sing like the bird, so we would be able to admire both mission and personal traits?

But mingled in there is the need for the bee to defend itself against those who would try to quell its progress. So the bee threatens with a sting.

It is bizarre.

It is beyond my grasp.

Yet it works.

And when the bees started to die off a few years ago, we very complex human beings were sent into a dither over the prospect of losing the little fellas.

For after all, we need them.

So we must remember, there are many things in life that benefit us … which are also allowed to sting us if we misuse them.

 

 

Donate Button

Thank you for enjoying Words from Dic(tionary) —  J.R. Practix

 

 

 

Alive

Words from Dic(tionary)

dictionary with letter A

 

Alive: (adj.) living; not dead.

One of my favorite stories from the Good Book is the discourse between the angel sitting on the stone that had been rolled away from the tomb of Jesus with the women who had come to make him smell sweeter for burial.

The reason I like it so much is that it’s filled with attitude.The angel pipes off with a bit of verve, “Why do you seek the living among the dead?”

It’s really kind of bratty–especially since these ladies had just seen Jesus die, and were trying to be nice … with spice.

But the angel had insider information. Jesus was alive.

It’s powerful.

It’s so powerful that I am determined to only pursue situations in my time on earth that welcome being alive. How do we know when something is alive?

It’s hungry.

Yes, there is an appetite. A true sign of sickness is that the sight of food makes us throw up. And the evidence of indifference is when we no longer want to eat information to make us stronger.

Things that are alive are thirsty.

They need to replenish fluids because they’re constantly losing them. If they don’t, they dry up and blow away.

I believe being alive involves some manifestation of laughing.

Maybe it’s not always an outward giggle, but it is a sense of good cheer–that nothing is over until it’s over, so why discuss the premature death of anything?

But in like manner, to be alive requires crying.

If we don’t lament loss and acknowledge the absence, we will not have the sensibility to fill the vacuum.

You can tell something is still alive because it’s trying.

I once saw a bird fall from the sky, injured. But even though it was wounded, it continued to move, attempting to gain flight. It lifted from the ground with its one remaining wing, for a few feet successful, and then fell again. But eventually the bird made its way to a place of safety. It kept trying.

I meet individuals who consider themselves intellectual superiors because they have given up on the idea of human beings. I don’t argue with them. It’s ridiculous to debate with the deceased.

And finally, if something is alive, it’s growing.

I’ve been dealing with this in the past month. Just because I’m aging does not mean I can’t keep my muscles toned, my diet correct and my aspirations courageous. When we stop growing, we are bedding down for our death.

Look for things that are alive.

And stop seeking the living among the dead.

 

Acquaint

Words from Dic(tionary)

by J. R. Practix

dictionary with letter A

  Acquaint: (v.) to make someone aware of or familiar with: e.g. “let me acquaint you with your new staff.”

Aware. Familiar.

There are so many forces at work, trying to snatch my awareness and force me to become familiar with their rendition of the truth or their innovative marketing scheme.

I am in danger of becoming a red rubber ball, bouncing among a playground full of childish participants, who view me merely as a tool of their game.

It is up to me to acquaint myself with the things in life that enrich the possibility for optimism, without turning me into a silly bird flying in every direction, chasing sunbeams.

I need to believe without ignoring my reality. How do you do that?

I must become aware of good hues, while familiarizing myself with darker tints. If I mingle the two, I can become pragmatic AND pursue my portion of the solution instead of rallying to the rear of the naysayers:

  • I will acquaint myself with the beauty of a crooning sparrow. These creatures beckon the beginning of a new day.
  • I will acquaint myself with the homeless people in my community, who would revel in receiving my dollar bill instead of me eating unnecessary calories from the convenience store treat.
  • I will acquaint myself with music of all types instead of taking sides on tunes and ridiculing those choices that are not found on my I-pod.
  • I will acquaint myself with traditions that have been the salvation of many a soul, instead of finding fault with the numerous silly attempts they often make to share their testimony.
  • I will acquaint myself with the beauty and power of both political parties and astound the world around me by pointing out the better moments of each.
  • I will acquaint myself with the God I discover in nature instead of somehow or another bowing down to nature AS God.
  • I will acquaint myself with the gentleness of touching a human hand instead of pawing at life, grabbing on for satisfaction.

I will become aware. I will familiarize myself with truth.

Yes, I will acquaint myself with what makes me free.

I will acquaint myself with you–without asking you to become me.

Abbas

by J. R. Practix

dictionary with letter AAbbas: Ferhat (1899-1989) Algerian nationalist leader. He was president of the Algerian provisional government in 1958 and then president of the constituent assembly of independent Algeria from 1962-63.

Who cares? I mean, I’m just human. I read about this guy with the funny name and I thought to myself, “What difference does it make?”

Then, to promote a bit of humility, I looked ahead in the dictionary–checking for MY name–and upon discovering that it was absent, I realized that this fellow did something really remarkable. Even though he’s not internationally famous and his name is not spoken frequently in the household, he found a place for himself, made a difference, and to those around him, became important.

Who can ask for more than that?

I walked out of my house today, looked up into the trees and saw a bird. There was NOTHING distinguishable about this creature whatsoever. It was grayish-black, as bland as possible, just sitting up on a branch. But I realized that somewhere that bird is …well, Top Bird. Somewhere that bird has built a nest, goes out looking for worms for his or her little offspring, and in that particular venue, is King of the World.

We spend so much time criticizing ourselves for failing to achieve the top echelon of our goals instead of celebrating how far we have come in comparison to how crappy we COULD have been.

So this Abbas guy did a bunch of stuff in Algeria that made a difference. And he made the dictionary!  Hat’s off. Or if that’s inappropriate in his culture, hat’s on.

I was ashamed of myself for being indifferent to someone who made a difference and I decided to follow the philosophy of my little pal in the tree. First of all, the bird can fly. One up on me. The bird has a nest. The bird is out trying to find worms. The bird is … important in that environment.

So join me today in building your nest. Then go out and find your worm. And then, strut your bird. That’s right–be aware that even if you don’t make the dictionary, you still have done your part to define excellence.