Curmudgeon

Cumudgeon: (n) a bad-tempered, difficult, cantankerous person.

 

Throwing water on the fire of someone’s excitement.

Refusing to discuss an important issue because you find it inappropriate to the surroundings.

Asking people to take off their hat when they visit your church.

Frowning at a young mother in a store because her children are misbehaving.

Failing to respond to “have a nice day.”

Criticizing young people because you do not understand their culture.

Making fun of technology because, somehow or another, you think you were smarter with pencils, paper clips and glue.

Talking about your generation as being superior to another generation.

Refusing to let someone who has two items go ahead of you in the grocery checkout, when you have one thousand.

Acting confused about why young people are “so goddamn horny.”

Telling your mechanic that forty years ago, you got a fuel pump put in your car for eighteen dollars.

Asking the pastor of your church to turn down the PA system and not have guitars during the worship service.

Voting for a candidate you know will keep everything the same because change angers you.

Choosing to go down a different aisle at the department store because people of color are there, and you don’t know how to talk to them.

Yelling at kids because they don’t pick up their toys.

Yelling at the toys that you step on, wishing you could hit the kids.

Claiming that special occasions are not necessary for you because you don’t like all the fuss.

Watching a movie and insisting on talking about another one which you saw thirty years ago.

Sticking your nose up at a new food choice because you think it looks funny or the name sounds foreign.

Seeing old people and assuming they are mean.

There are many ways to be a curmudgeon.

Unfortunately, the list is growing.

funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

Chary

Chary: (adj) cautiously or suspiciously reluctant to do something

Just for the record (since there is a record) I will tell you that I had no idea what this word meant. I am not going to don the personna of the instructor, speaking to you students in need of education.

Matter of fact, I may never use this word again. There are many other words that replace it with greater clarity.

But we certainly live in chary times.

It is now fashionable to be over-protective, overwrought, over-thoughtful, over-medicated, over-meditated, and over the moon over things that just really don’t matter.

Yet, when something of quality, value and eternal consequence comes into our presence, it is thrust into a committee meeting where we consider its value, and usually end up believing we are over-extended or that “it’s not in the direction we’re going.”

Not only do I think that we couldn’t launch a rocket to the moon in this day and age, I also think there would be some lengthy conversation on whether there actually is a moon in the first place.

We have begun to equate “cantankerous” and “knowledgeable.”

We admire those who require great thought and consideration before leaping into new possibilities.

We have developed tiny themes which we call sacred and then force everything that truly does have heavenly possibilities to fit into the confines of these little boxes.

We are reluctant. We sneer. We look askance at all nuance. We are chary.

And we make it clear that we will not be sold, intimidated or even convinced to do something unless we are in the mood.

The end result is that we never pursue anything that does not have the whiff of what we’ve already done.

So Republicans do Republican things and Democrats do Democrat things.

After accomplishing their minimal efforts, they then take the bulk of their time to criticize the competition.

 

 

 

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Bewilder

Bewilder: (v) to cause someone to become perplexed and confused.

Dictionary B

Every situation has to come to a head or we won’t find the brain.

One of my most shocking realizations was that the Hollywood endings I saw in the movies, where everybody reconciles with one another and there’s a sense of joy and peace, was just pure hogwash.

Feuds, grudges, hurt feelings and misrepresentations continue to exist and even thrive until we confront them and risk the possibility that we might make the situation even worse.

It is bewildering.

It bewilders me that we think living a passive-aggresive existence, where we create universal niceties to say to one another’s faces while simultaneously dredging up old manure from the sewer of our past to share in private moments, is actually an acceptable lifestyle.

To bewilder is to stymie human thinking with something that generates fear or confusion.

We cannot continue to think that the wounded parts of our being can heal without treatment.

I have several “relationships” in my life which are no more than uneasy truces.

  • They are evil.
  • They are dark.
  • They are sinister.
  • And they are dangerous.

They bewilder me because I passively agree to ignore the obvious aggression.

Will I continue to be so foolish?

If I’m not, I risk coming across as cantankerous and confrontational.

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Beautiful

Beautiful: (adj) pleasing the senses or mind aesthetically.Dictionary B

  • Manipulate the language and you control the discourse.
  • Controlling the discourse dictates the policy.
  • Policy in place, objection is often futile.

I’m not trying to be overly dramatic, yet I tell you that “beautiful” is one of the more cantankerous words in the language.

First of all, it has no real definition.

It is not only “in the eye of the beholder,” it is enforced by the prejudice of the viewing mob. Somehow or another, people have decided through marketing what beautiful is, and we now accept it as the common understanding.

Looking at Facebook the other day, I saw some pictures of my granddaughters. The comments that people selected to place in responding to the pictures were universally shallow.

“Pretty.”

“Gorgeous.”

And of course, “beautiful.”

Moving down the page, I discovered the picture of a young man. The responding words in the comment section were “strong, manly and handsome.”

I am really not trying to be a nudge about this. Being a plain-looking man, I am not offended by those who are attractive, nor do I wish them to have more limited appreciation.

I just feel that the word “beautiful” needs to be used more often to describe a fulfilling experience which radiates joy in the human heart rather than the perfect construction of eye sockets, cheek bones and noses.

I have been around people who are comely. And yes–I was struck with their features. But within five minutes, when it became necessary for them to perform some function other than iridescence, I saw that many of them were so dependent on their countenance to carry them that they had failed to hook up their brain with their tongue.

They were lost.

Yes, in a blind audition, they would be rendered dumb.

So under my granddaughters’ pictures on Facebook, I wrote, “Let’s get off the ‘pretty’ thing and realize that these are intelligent, intuitive and talented people.”

I was scoffed.

After all, these “complimenters” were just trying to be nice.

How could “beautiful” be considered anything but positive?

Even though it succeeds in leaving out most of the rest of us.

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Aura

Aura: (n) the distinctive atmosphere that seems to surround and be generated by a person, thing, or place.

I once had an acquaintance who believed she could perceive “auras” around the people she met.dictionary with letter A

As our friendship grew, I realized that most of these colorations she “divined” were usually determined by whether she liked the person.

So much like humans.

Yet I must tell you, about 6 months ago I became very concerned that the aura around the American people seemed to be dark, dingy and depleted of any of the “red, white and blue” that makes us strong and valuable.

It worried me.

I didn’t want to be “mystical” or strange-minded, but I wanted to say something, do something or be something that would reawaken our gentle side and our willingness to believe in one another.

After all, politics seems to have drug us down to a complete halt and religion is a cantankerous debate among misfits.

A couple of months ago I sat down and wrote a book. You probably haven’t heard about it since neither CNN nor Fox News decided to cover its release.

I entitled the work “Within”–because I deeply believe that what stews around our innards eventually emanates in our actions.

What did I want the book to say? Many things, but three major themes:

  1. We have more in common than difference.
  2. Rather than being complex, we humans are delightfully predictable.
  3. And doing better is actually easier than continuing to falter.

Writing the book was an eye-opening, emotionally fulfilling experience.

I kept it short–matter of fact, the whole book can be read in less than an hour. And even though I don’t have the Madison Avenue publicity machine to make the public aware of this offering, I will continue to share it on as many different avenues as cross my path.

It would be my joy to reach the end of my life and know that I had an effect on the aura of the American people.

Yes. how wonderful to encourage us, building up our spirits again…to flower some color in our cheeks.

 

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Anti-establishment

dictionary with letter A

 

Anti-establishment (adj): against the establishment or established authority.

There is no good idea that wasn’t once anti-establishment.

Why?

Because it’s just too easy to establish something.

All you have to do is get enough people to agree with you, fund it, develop a slogan, and set up a network of cantankerous and often contradictory committees.

We have to realize that the United States is not an established idea. Actually, it’s a rather rag-tag collection of opinions which are still being ironed out because there are so many wrinkles from the initial roll-out.

We are a mess–and damn proud of it, by the way.

So it becomes quite comical to me when anyone suggests that anything in this country is anti-establishment. For after all, everything in this country is actually anti-establishment, struggling to get the nod of the 51%.

Democracy is such a dog show it’s no wonder we occasionally end up with a dog.

So before we become self-righteous about some cause, or believe that the entire heavens have inhabited our earthly philosophy to be distributed to the masses, let us realize that our country has fought every nationality that has ever tried to emigrate here, has imprisoned and enslaved several colors, and continues to fearfully try to protect principles which have already screamed for some touch-up and repair.

Therefore, how can you be on the safe end of all the ruckus going on as we jockey for position and stump for votes?

Always remember three things. It will help you to determine where to stand:

  1. God gave people free will and He won’t let you take it away.
  2. Anything that helps people find themselves at least opens the door to them becoming better.
  3. No one is better than anyone else. In other words, we’re all more alike than different.

Yes, if you add your fourth part to that trio that sings the song of freedom, forming your own quartet, you will find that most of the time you won’t need to sing off-key.

 

 

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Anatomically Correct

dictionary with letter A

Anatomically correct (adj): {of a doll} having the sexual organs plainly represented.

Humans share two things in common:

  • the need to have something bigger than ourselves
  • and the desire to always be bigger.

It is a mental infestation.

Because in trying to find something bigger than ourselves, we usually come up with some sort of god-figure who is more cantankerous than helpful.

And with the penchant for wanting to be bigger, we often become petty and fussy with one another.

I remember junior high school locker room during shower time–even though the guys sincerely tried to make it clear that they weren’t “gay” or, as we called it at that time–“queer”–we all had a tendency to peek over to see what manly bestowal had been granted to our neighbor.

I guess with girls it revolves around the breasts.

Of course, in junior high school, some guys had bloomed earlier and others had a similar wee-wee to what was afforded them right out of the womb.

So self-conscious, nervous, frustrated and almost paranoid energy permeated the steamy room. And the worst part of it was that the only comfort afforded to your being was discovering someone smaller than you.

Therefore I’m a little bit put off or even intimidated by the notion of “anatomically correct dolls.” Even though they are inanimate objects, in their own way they seem to scoff at me from their pre-determined status.

It doesn’t matter whether it’s saint or sinner, priest or penitent, or prophet or porn star. We are all unnecessarily preoccupied with our presence and prowess in that limited region beneath our belt.

Matter of fact, the criterion for maturity may be a successful ability to ignore such instinct and push past it, creating something of beauty that just might be everlasting.

Here’s what I think about my anatomy:

If it’s working and not trying to kill me, I really don’t want to give it too much attention.

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Alfalfa

Words from Dic(tionary)

dictionary with letter A

Alfalfa: (n) a legume with clover-like leaves and bluish flowers, native to southwestern Asia; it is widely grown for fodder.

It’s really quite amazing.

I will never be able to consider alfalfa a legume grown for fodder. Instead, the fodder of alfalfa, to me, is a scrawny white boy with painted-on freckles, black hair parted in the middle, with a huge cow-lick sticking up in the back.

Yes, I’m talking about the young man who was the hero, sometime-villain, and always dopey foil of every ill-conceived plan from the cartoon, The Little Rascals.

Recently, during a particularly satisfying episode of channel-surfing, I stumbled on one of these grainy black-and-white productions done in the 1930’s and 40’s. I decided to watch.

It surprised me that as a young kid I would have been drawn to this adventure series. First of all, we don’t need to discuss how television negatively affects children today, when back then we sat them down in front of the box to watch The Little Rascals.

They were a nasty and cantankerous group of children, who did their best to perform evil pranks on their adversaries and promoted the bigotry of the day with a wide-eyed, purposely dumbed-down black child named Buckwheat.

Alfalfa was especially annoying to me. But I realized he was the exact representation of what makes America so mediocre.

  • He wasn’t as attractive as he thought he was.
  • He wasn’t the leader he thought he was.
  • He wasn’t as successful as he thought he was.
  • And just like so many of these musical shows on TV today, he couldn’t sing as well as he thought he could.

I kept waiting for something redeemable to come out of the escapade–some sort of Aesop moral which a young child could take away from the television set and proudly say, “There. I learned something positive today.”

It just wasn’t there.

Matter of fact, if some of the deeds of The Little Rascals were taken to juvenile court, they would definitely be spending some time behind bars, eating chicken pot pies.

So the word “alfalfa” is perhaps ruined for me forever because it represents a bratty, snotty, untalented young boy who thinks too highly of himself.

So please forgive me for failing to recognize the agricultural possibilities. Yes, I guess alfalfa is supposed to be a legume.

But on The Little Rascals he was a fruitcake.