Continent

Continent: (n) one of the main landmasses of the globe, usually reckoned as seven in number

It is 25,000 miles around the Earth.

I suppose if you are accustomed to driving four blocks to the grocery store that number seems outrageously large. But when you’re thinking about a home space for nearly eight billion people, that 25,000-mile number suddenly appears limited, if not confining.

Living space within that circumference is seven continents, if you’re willing to let Antarctica slip-slide its way in. Since even polar bears and funny wisdom on words that begin with a C
penguins are reluctant to occupy that particular Southern apartment, we’re down to six living areas.

It’s not that much.

It becomes almost comical, and then, if pursued too far, dangerous to eyeball one another as foreigners when we are such closely knit next-door-neighbors.

For instance, Africa can be considered a continent, a home for black people, or one of the six pieces of turf available. Perhaps this is why we’ve become so turfy.

There’s Europe and Asia, which have little evidence of a boundary, but continue as one whopping, huge space, peppered with cultures, when really, we’re all intended to just be the salt of the Earth.

South America is also filled with Americans, even though North America, and especially the United States, insists on claiming the title.

Australia, a country, boasts being a continent, and because they are so willing to share their “shrimp on the barbie,” we see no reason to argue with the congenial folk.

We are all within 25,000 miles of one another—when it’s 238,900 miles to the moon and ninety million to the sun.

And that is all within our solar system—when we exist in a universe that scoffs at being considered a mere billion galaxies.

Perspective.

Since the water is winning the war for Earth, as land becomes a little less every year, maybe it’s time for us to work on “neighborly” instead of weapons.


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Contiguous

Contiguous: (adj) touching; in contact.

 There are forty-eight contiguous states.

This means they’re hooked together on a continent with imaginary, man-made borders affixed between.funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

So, in this season of discussing whether we require a wall to protect us from another country, we simultaneously have a problem regarding the social, emotional, prejudicial and cultural walls that have been constructed between our contiguous, allegedly “United” States.

The reason it’s difficult for the members of Congress to get along is not just because of a warring two-party system. It is also because representatives from California are convinced that Congressmen and women from Mississippi, Georgia and Alabama are ignorant. And those who deem themselves from the “Right Coast” are convinced that their brothers and sisters dwelling on the “Left Coast” want to drive the country into a socially distorted and morally ambiguous hell.

Therefore, even though focus seems to be on aliens with questionable activities invading our country, it is actually the friction among the contiguous states that is really generating the atmosphere of hateful tension.


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Aussie

Aussie (n. and adj): informal term for Australia or Australian.

It is a phenomenon worth studying.dictionary with letter A

Ever since Crocodile Dundee debuted in America in 1986, the folks of our country have been absolutely enamored by Australians.

  • We’ve eaten shrimp with them down at the “barbie.”
  • We frequently go to the Outback Steakhouse.
  • And we nearly had 40 days of mourning over a young man who got stung and killed by a stingray.

What is our fascination with those we dub Aussies?

May I advance some possibilities?

  1. They have almost an American audacity to proclaim their country a continent. (We don’t even do that.)
  2. They kind of talk British without being sprinkled with fairy dust.
  3. They look like they would wear shorts to work everyday.
  4. Knowing that opera is boring, they made their Sydney Opera House interesting looking.
  5. They have kangaroos. Come on.
  6. Their country has a Wild West feel to it instead of being beleaguered by mini-malls and huge billboards.
  7. Every once in a while they produce a good rock and roll band.
  8. And finally, their winter is in July. (That’s gutsy.)

I think the basic thing that promotes the Aussie appeal is that they have a friendliness instead of a nastiness, even though they appear to be extremely independent.

In our country, if you’re going to be a free-thinker, you normally choose to snarl.

In Australia, you say, “G’day.”

 

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Apparition

dictionary with letter A

Apparition (n.) a remarkable thing that makes a sudden appearance, especially a ghost.

I believe in ghosts.

Not the cloudy, smoky spirits of souls who have gone on to their reward or retribution. I’m talking about the ghosts of bad ideas, inclinations and fallacies that possessed our world in the past, and now have come to haunt us in the present.

  • Sometimes I just wish we could come up with new bad ideas.
  • Sometimes I just wish there was something new.

But instead we have the poltergeist of previous ridiculous concepts rising up from the grave, where we thought we buried it, only to spook us once again.

We don’t have new scandals. We have the spirit of Richard Nixon and Watergate infesting the present bodies of our politicians, making them do the same stupid mistakes he tried to pull off, which ended up with his destruction.

We don’t have music born of the spirituality and emotions of our own generation, but rather, grave-robbers who go and dig up the tunes of those who are now decomposing.

We are continually vexed by the apparitions of past failures or the ongoing celebration of victories, where the band has already played and marched away.

We spend too much time celebrating the past, forgetting the prejudice, disease and dumbness that prevailed.

I believe in ghosts because we refuse to inter the past.

So we just keep living this stuff over and over again … like a bunch of tales from the crypt.

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Apparent

dictionary with letter A

Apparent (adj.)1. clearly seen or understood; obvious. 2. seeming real, but not necessarily so.

All of our eyeballs have been blurred, leaving our vision tainted.

Perhaps it was the disappointment brought on by the tension of adolescence, or some hidden prejudice inserted into our thinking by well-meaning parents.

It might have been high expectation which was dashed and brought crashing to the earth by the flak of reality.

Somewhere along the line we began looking at the world through clouded lenses of bigoted conclusions.

Therefore what is apparent to one person is not equally as apparent to another. Matter of fact, we’ve developed a whole philosophical approach to the issue, insisting that we’re all quite different, and in our difference we find our “special purpose.”

Yet it doesn’t occur to us that if we all have different views of what is necessary, beautiful and spiritual, we’re more likely to collide into each other in the dark than to embrace each other in the light.

I do think it’s important that we come to some common ground on what is apparent, and even if we don’t completely understand it, submit to the wisdom of some very essential precepts:

1. We are not here alone.

In other words, we cannot live our lives as if there are no other human beings, and trying to pursue our goals without a belief in a Creator can be more frustrating than enriching.

2. The truth will make you free.

Lying is a detour which takes you through town, past the beautiful houses, but always ends up at the city dump. No one ever gets away with lying–and truthfully, the longer the deceit is disguised, the worse the retribution.

3. Miracles are God’s business, but talent is mine.

There is no replacement for ability applied with hard work. Those who peddle shortcuts, easy diet plans and get-rich schemes may be the closest thing we will ever see to flesh-and-blood satans.

There are things which are apparent. If we agree, we can begin to pull together instead of pushing and shoving each other. But to get this done, we must stop believing that the Earth is a series of human islands instead of a continent of brothers and sisters.

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Antarctica

dictionary with letter AAntarctica: A continent around the South Pole

Somebody just wanted seven.

I am convinced that some guy putting together the map of the world thought that seven continents looked better than six, so he peered down at the South Pole and said, “Hey! There’s a continent!”

(Obviously, he didn’t think that eight was as poetic as seven. Otherwise, why leave out the North Pole?)

It must have been a real public relations bonanza for all the penguins and polar bears, even though I cannot truthfully tell you that I am positive there are polar bears at the South Pole.

Actually, what I know about the South Pole has gone south in my intelligence level.

I know this: I have no desire to visit it.

Matter of fact, when it occasionally comes on the television set with some sort of special about it, I turn the channel because I get cold.

I don’t like to get cold.

I grew up in the Midwest in an area where we weren’t even blessed with an abundance of snow–only the dreariness of gray clouds and the damp, bitter Jack Frost nipping at your ass.

So as I have aged (beyond twelve) I yearn for a place where you can walk out the door without having to display half of your wardrobe to stay warm.

So obviously, I am not a fan of Antarctica.

I don’t even like penguins that well because I think they’re making fun of how I walk.

And I was disappointed the first time I saw a polar bear, realizing that they’re really not white. They’re kind of a sickly beige.

So hats off to those who want to explore this mysterious seventh continent, including it on their bucket list of things to do before they die.

Just realize that if you do go … everything in your bucket will be frozen.

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