Commie

Commie:(n) a communist

Growing up, there were three great insults we used repeatedly to decimate the character of those around us, while greatly inflating our own sense of self-importance: retard, gay and Commie

Although they were often used interchangeably for all seasons and all reasons, there were specific times when “retard” was applied. Whenever anyone did anything that inconvenienced us he or she was a retard.

When anyone did anything the least bit unusual, and we were afraid they would ask us to do it, too, they were gay.

And when our parents told us that certain children had mothers and fathers who were questionable in their politics–well, those kids were Commies.

You could probably survive being a retard, as long as you didn’t get too upset.

You could flee from being gay.

But once you were identified as a Commie–an enemy of the state–a Ruskie–a member of the Soviet Union–a sympathizer with killers–well, it was just a little hard to shake that off.

I remember once when two friends and I refused to listen to a girl who came to school wearing jeans and a t-shirt (which was unheard of at the time) and spouted opinions on such things as ecology, civil rights, and even, God forbid, anti-war. She was especially upset with the war in Viet Nam.

In our freshman year, we had one view of this girl–but by the time we were seniors, the national opinion on civil rights had changed, ecology had been honored by the creation of Earth Day, and because of the Pentagon Papers, the Viet Nam War had been exposed as an unnecessary exercise in futility.

We were uncomfortable about it. The Commie had been proven correct.

So to compensate, we just started calling her gay.

 

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Chutzpah

Chutzpah: (n) shameless audacity; impudence.

One man’s impudence is another man’s courage.

I’m sure the bus driver thought Rosa Parks was very impudent when she refused to move to the back of the bus during the civil rights
conflict in Alabama.

Many of my teachers thought I was impudent when I questioned practices I felt were faulty, but were still part of the “scholastic logic.”

We live in a generation where your cause is meaningless to me and my cause is sanctioned by the will of God.

Yet I would never use the word “chutzpah.” It’s not because I’m anti-Semetic (which most people under the age of twenty would define as having something against cement.)

It’s just that I find the introduction of impudence, strife or vanity only complicate my possibilities instead of enhancing them. We are a race that promotes self-esteem while greatly enamored with humility.

I realize it is possible to be too humble, but it’s a risk each one of us should take.

Because when two impudent people stand on the field of play, hurling insults at one another, boasting of their prowess, the whistle does eventually blow, beginning the game. At that point, it becomes obvious who is better trained, who has a more ingenious plan and who will endure.

One great gift you can give to yourself is to shut up, impart your gift, and see how it rates amidst the cascading efforts of others.

 

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Chronological

Chronological: (adj) description of event in order

As long as you’re alive, you can keep the chronological events of your journey in order–even when people insist “you misremembered.” (One of the additional drawbacks to dying is that you’re suddenly at the mercy of someone else’s chronological breakdown of your life.)

Chronological is essential because it tells us if we’re actually making progress, or if we keep backsliding to our forward progress. Without this knowledge, we can either become discouraged because of a lack of direction, or elated over a false promotion of actual events.

Please keep in mind that one hundred and fifty-four years ago, the slaves were freed. Yet even this week in America, we’re still discussing racism as if we’ve just driven into town from the plantation. Studying the chronological order of civil rights in America would do a lot for our understanding of what yet needs to be done.

Perceiving the chronological order of advances in the medical field instead of worshipping the hype of “doctor promotion” would certain guide us on where to place our money for more research.

Knowing that B should follow A before C intrudes is how we keep good sense and wisdom in our lives.

So “Which came first, the chicken or the egg?” is a valid question.

And knowing what you were doing last year at this time and comparing it to where you are now in your chronological clock is just downright saintly.

 

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Burgeon

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Burgeon: (v) to grow or increase rapidly; flourish.

If you don’t learn the tricks, you’ll get fooled at the circus.

Life is a carnival.

Actually, it’s a “carnival of errors” which are overly promoted, while great ideas which need time to simmer in the pot are thrown out with the daily wash.

How can you tell if something is going to burgeon and bring forth great possibilities?

You certainly can’t assess the value because it spawns immediate popularity. We humans are picky–if we’re not familiar with it, if it doesn’t look the same, or if someone really cool fails to recommend it, we are suspicious, or dare I say, even bratty.

You would think that some ideas that burgeoned in the past, proving themselves to be valuable, would be revered. But it seems that each generation has to re-discover for themselves “do unto others as you would have them do unto you,” and the fact that if you don’t sow, you shouldn’t expect to reap.

Matter of fact, the most noble pursuit one can have during this brief journey on Earth, is finding things that will be around in a hundred years.

And instead of allowing them to be shoved to the rear of the bus, we stand up, like Rosa Parks, and push them to the front.

 

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Boycott

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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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Aquamarine

dictionary with letter A

Aquamarine (n): a light bluish-green color.

This may sound very selfish, but one of the fringe benefits of the recent civil rights afforded to the gay community (aside from the fact that we live in a free country and it was basically inevitable once the belly-aching ceased) is that we no longer have to be threatened by other men saying “that’s gay.”

It has become a taboo.

It used to be a perpetual, common horror.

I remember many years ago when leisure suits were both leisurely and in fashion, I found one at a discount store, marked down, which happened to be my size. It was aquamarine.

You see, the problem was that even though it was a much more colorful era, certain hues were still looked upon as being suspect of your sexual orientation. Add to the fact that I was a piano player, and you had the makings of a San Francisco gay parade.

Not only did I get an occasional sneer and sidewise comment, like, “Nice color, big boy,” but I also began to envision that I was being stared at by the entire world, viewed as a “man lover.”

So paranoid was I that I started prancing around like John Wayne and using the deepest timbre my voice could muster. When wearing the aquamarine garment, I was always quick to point out that I was married and had fathered children from my own manly source.

It was crazy.

Finally, even though I loved the outfit, I purposefully “accidentally” forgot it at a motel. (What I mean is, I actually did forget it, but remembered it by the time I got to the elevator and decided not to go back for it.)

So somewhere in Yuma, Arizona, there is a big fat man wearing an aquamarine leisure suit … who obviously has much more confidence than I do.

 

 

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American Dream

dictionary with letter A

American dream: (n) the traditional social ideals of the U.S., such as equality, democracy and material prosperity.

I think the American dream has been over-analyzed by Freudian pundits and politicians who plan on using their own interpretation to bring about the enactment of their particular will.

I’m not so sure I agree with the Republicans that every American wants a gun.

Likewise, the more liberal view of the Democrats concerning giving people license to do whatever they want to under the guise of civil rights doesn’t achieve much more than an emotional traffic jam.

I’ll tell you what I think the American dream is: Hunk, Chunk, Junk.

I think the power of freedom in this country, with the intelligent use of capitalism, enables me to go out and get my hunk. I should have every right to do that. If it doesn’t infringe on the needs of others or hurt my fellow-man and woman, I should be applauded for my efforts and be given a barn to store my bounty.

Then from that hunk, I should get my chunk. This is probably where people will disagree with me. Lots of folks think they need every single dime they earn to cover their own personal indebtedness. If that’s the case, you’ll spend your life pretty miserable. I should be able to break off a chunk from my hunk that will make me happy and keep me in grits, gravy, gravel and glee.

What remains from my hunk actually becomes my junk. Things I don’t need. Things I don’t want anymore. It’s a startling but true statement that if everybody in America emptied their attics and garages of all the things they haven’t used in the past six months, and gave them to their neighbors, 75% of the personal needs of others would be fulfilled.

It’s not treasure if moths and rust are corrupting it and it’s being stolen by time and depreciation.

Get rid of your junk.

Bless someone else. They won’t think it’s junk.

They will treasure it as their hunktheir American dream.