Cog

Cog: (n) a subordinate, integral part

Hell, I’d love to be a cog, but nobody’s showing up with the damn wheel.

I faithfully tried to learn my part, prepared to insert it into …

Nothing.

Even though it sounds very noble to be a cog in a great experiment of human progress, it does require that everyone bring their part, ready to be put into place and withstand motion.

Since it’s become much more fanciful to complain about lack than it is to pick up the slack, if you arrive with your cog, you could be standing there holding your cog in your hand.

This is why some people have become bitter.

Other folks have given up on the idea that human beings are capable of completing anything.

My solution is to build a cog that is able to link up with other forces, but also can perform some function of its own if necessary.

Even if it’s a simple as cracking nuts, I want my cog to be able to stand alone–just in case other cogs fail to deliver.

For let me tell you, the common way to become cynical is to assume that everyone has your level of dedication. It is mercy that makes the world go around, and mercy requires that we create a cog that works well with others, but also can make a damn good cup of coffee.

 

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Coated

Coated: (n) a layer of covering

I, for one, appreciate and enjoy the candy coating on my aspirin.

I know it’s just a brief whiz-by of sweetness, but it keeps me from tasting any of that aspirin flavor that sticks in the back of your throat and makes you cough.

It’s just damned considerate.

This crossed my mind about twenty years ago, but I didn’t really do anything about it until last year. (Sometimes it takes nineteen years to work up the gumption to follow through on one of your own pieces of brilliance.)

But twenty years ago, I thought to myself, the problem with human relationships is that they aren’t candy-coated.

We walk around with some adult, grown-up notion that things should be nasty, and the more bitter they are the better it is–because we’ll end up with such a great, complaining story.

It wasn’t until last year that I realized that this applied to me. I was waiting for somebody else to put it into practice. But then I sat down one afternoon and realized that I am sometimes hard to swallow:

I can be bitter

I can be nasty

I can be sour.

And the truth of the matter is, my responsibilities require that I use candor and truthfulness to get the job done. After all, can there be anything worse than a writer who’s a liar–which may force him to write more lies later?

Yet there are human ingredients of sweetness that can be added to truth, so that we can feel love as we embrace reality.

May we never lose kindness.

May we never forget the power of being gentle.

May we always take into consideration a sense of humor.

And certainly, may our daily lives be blessed by the power of apology and the simplicity of a thank you.

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Caustic

Caustic (adj) sarcastic in a scathing and bitter way.

Being negative to another human being when positive energy could be beneficial is a great offense.

But equally as caustic is to piously tell folks they can do things that they can’t. It is cruel, mean-spirited and to a large degree, self-righteous
–simply because we want to be known for giving flowers instead of stopping and working with people’s soil, and teaching them how to get something to grow.

Life is not about me. Rather, it’s about me learning to be honest with myself, and then gradually sharing with the world around me.

Yet I will tell you–it is sarcastic, bitter, childish and ridiculous to take humans who have chosen mediocrity and insist that they are just as valuable as those who are laying their lives down to discover greater purpose.

If the truth makes us free, then anything short of that freedom is bondage.

For after all, you can tie people up with fuzzy bows just as easily as you can with barbed wire.

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Cabbage

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Cabbage: (n) a cultivated plant eaten as a vegetable,

Cabbage, while cooking, smells like farts.

Since this is true, one should not be surprised that consuming such a concoction should continue the fart-smelling process all the way through your body. Matter of fact, your house will smell like farts for days after cooking and digesting cabbage.

Another insight: cabbage is one of those vegetables that only tastes good if it’s cooked to a certain level of tenderness–or if the head has a slight sweetness to it.

How are you supposed to find that out?

I suppose you could break off a little piece in the grocery store and chew on the raw leaf. I’m not going to do that.

And so, because it is difficult to prepare, quickly becomes mushy, and the more it’s overcooked the more bitter it tastes, it’s just best to wait until some professional cooks it for you.

Otherwise, you will have fart smell in your house, fart smell in your body, and wonder if it was worth it in the first place.

 

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Bitter

Bitter: (adj) angry, hurt, or resentful

Nothing ever gets better if we insist it should never have happened.Dictionary B

It is the source of all bitterness.

Discussion is avoided because the mere mention of the event creates such a ferocious response that conversation is impossible.

Maybe there’s a little arrogance tied to it. Perhaps it is this “life in a bubble” experience that we all desire–which is continually burst. Then not only are we offended, but also find ourselves rigidly refusing to consider reconciliation.

Why?

  • Because “how dare he?”
  • Or “how dare she?”
  • Or even “how dare they?”

Even though we acknowledge they are just human beings, we still think they should have had the divine insight to be aware that we should not have been challenged.

The Good Book calls bitterness a root.

It is a seed of pride which we plant in the dirt of failure, which sprouts a rage burrowing deep within our soul, disguising its presence.

So we cover up bitter with apathy … and we insist our apathy is just a preference or a decision to move on.

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Apricot

dictionary with letter A

Apricot: (n): a juicy, small fruit resembling a peach, of an orangy-yellow color.

I do not feel that the apricot has been adequately addressed in any public forum.

It probably could remain so, and the world would continue to revolve and Kentucky Fried Chicken still contain eleven herbs and spices.

But since I have been blessed with the benefit of sharing useless information to very valuable people, I shall elaborate on ny sentiments about this little fruit.

First and foremost, it is a temperamental sort. It has about a fifteen-minute life cycle, when it is sweet enough to eat, and the rest of the time is either too hard or too bitter to undulate on the great dance floor of my mouth.

To determine this, I have denigrated myself to the caveman mentality of “squeezing for freshness.” If I feel, upon palming the item, that the skin of the fruit somehow separates from the meat, then it is possibly ripe enough to eat.

If, upon placing it in my hand, it resembles a golf ball, then I know to put it aside and leave it alone, lest its bitter disposition enter my sanctuary.

The second aspect of the apricot–which I’ve never heard anyone explain–is that even when I do find one ready for consumption, because the skin is a bit tough, or perhaps a touch furry, I feel compelled to use my teeth and tongue to fold it over, so that the fruity side touches my teeth and the skin is tucked inside.

Does anyone else do that besides me? If you don’t, I can recommend it–because then you get the soft, sweet fruit without the tough hide.(Which, by the way, might be an accurate parallel to my relationship with women.)

So I would have to conclude that I am quite fond of apricots, but I do want to make sure that they are adequately ripe and that the skin stays away from setting my teeth on edge.

 

 

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Annals

dictionary with letter A

Annals: (pl. n.) a record of events, year by year.

Baffled.

I like that word.

Because when I admit I’m baffled, I’m not saying I’m angry, frustrated, or out to get anyone. I’m just literally confused by the information that’s been provided to me.

I think it’s necessary to become baffled; otherwise, you start accepting what’s around you as normal, rather than looking back in the annals of history, the annals of intelligence and the annals of progress, to remind yourself that this present fad will pass away, lending itself to the possibility of sanity.

Yes, I recently became baffled when I realized that most of my friends whom I’ve known over the years have become more stodgy as they’ve become older instead of pursuing the path of wisdom–garnering the very best of what we’ve learned and bringing that package to the new possibilities before us.

Let me ask you:

  • Why do we line up to imitate the parents we used to rebel against?
  • Why do we suddenly become the gossipers we used to despise and make fun of because of their nasty tongues and bitter faces?
  • Why do we insist that those who are younger than us are somehow stupid or are pursuing destruction, when that is exactly what we were accused of by the stick-in-the-mud adults around us when we were coming of age?

I know we extol the value of mathematics, technology, reading and science, but somewhere along the line we need to hire some good history teachers to remind each and every generation of the ridiculous trends that nearly took us into the pits of hell, burning away our opportunities.

The annals of history are not the memories of old people who have now died and are decaying in graves, but rather, the memories of fresh, young faces who believed they could live forever, and made some poor choices along with their good ones, and found out much too late that life is short.

So I would say to all my friends:

Ease up. The greatest thing you can acquire as you get older is an open mind. Maybe all the extra oxygen coming into that wider space could prevent some dementia.

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