Charlatan

Charlatan: (n) a person falsely claiming to have a special knowledge or skill; a fraud.

Even though I don’t believe there’s any secret to life–otherwise God would be a nasty uncle playing a game of hide and seek so He can take a nap–I do believe there are markers along the way, telling us how to make this passage of Earth-Time much more plausible.

One of those gems is to make sure you never critique anyone unless you’ve already scoured yourself to uncover the same condition.

If you call somebody a fake, you’d better make sure you’re not faking something yourself.

If you refer to somebody as a liar, you might want to precede that with an honesty session and unburden yourself of all your half-truths.

And if you claim that someone is a charlatan, you should be fully aware that the false claims you place on your qualifications–the additional bullet points you may slip into a resume–might equally define you as being a charlatan also.

Here’s a powerful message: take aim at yourself first, and then see if you can help somebody else.

Dirty people with dirty hands who come across other dirty people and try to help them end up just transferring much of their dirt onto the person in need.

God forgive generations of ministers, politicians, businessmen, counselors, teachers and even parents who voraciously took on the job of correcting…except where it came to straightening their own path.

 

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Antique

dictionary with letter A

Antique: (n) an object such as a piece of furniture or work of art which has a high value due to its considerable age.

For a brief season in my life I had more money than I needed and therefore convinced myself that I needed more money.

It’s amazing how greed does not go away when you find yourself in the black after bills are paid, but rather, settles as a black cloud over your soul, convincing you that if you don’t lay up more treasure, you will be swallowed by some catastrophe in the future, yet unseen.

So even though most of my journey has been spent clapping my hands in glee when the electric bill has been paid and cleared the bank, during this particular odyssey of finance, I became obsessed with a new word.

Investment.

Yes. Everything needed to be an investment.

So I was told my counselors (who were many since they discovered they could siphon off my wealth via giving advice) that houses were a good purchase.

I was told that if I bought a beautiful white grand piano, it would only appreciate over the years.

And of course, it was necessary, since I was now a person of worldly ilk, to go antiquing.

I was supposed to go to little storefronts which were jammed to the gills with fishy deals, and listen to someone explain how “this table was once in the den of Johnny Appleseed,” and had “already trebled in value and would certainly continue to do so.”

Having an untrained eye, to me it looked like a beat-up piece of wood which should have been broken up to fuel a fire years ago.

When I pointed this out to one of the enthusiastic “antiquers,” he stood back in horror and said, “It’s old. So it’s worth more money.”

I explained to him that I was getting older, and no one found me more valuable. He laughed a little (after all, I was still a potential sale).

Here was my discovery:

  • I bought houses and barely broke even on the turnaround.
  • That white grand piano had to be sold for less than half of its original value.
  • And all the antiques I purchased were viewed by garage sale people as worthless clumps of nothing instead of the posterity of Mr. Appleseed.

There is a bliss to poverty.

You don’t have to wonder what you’re going to do with all your money.

Macaroni and cheese still tastes good on Day Three.

And most importantly… you don’t have to deal with antiques.

 

 

 

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