Daddy

Daddy: (n) diminutive of Dad

Approaching my produce man at the grocery store, I asked:

“When is watermelon season?”

Without thinking, he replied, “When the watermelon show up.”

I suppose when you practically live in a grocery store, you judge the seasons by what comes off the back of the truck.

In the midst of being a parent, there is a brief vapor of time when your child recognizes you, proclaims you and refers to you as “Daddy.”

It is such a safe, sweet location that you’re tempted to encourage it to expand its borders to broader vistas.

But you can’t mess with it.

It happens during a child’s perfect age–when “Dada” has been abandoned and right before you become the generic “Dad.”

Just hearing the word lets you know how valuable you are to the child.

It gives you a reassuring hug in your soul that he is not plotting, smoking, drinking and thinking of new ways to download pornography.

For after all, you are “Daddy”—”Dada” who has become so familiar that you have gained shape and presence.

Sometimes the word “Daddy” is followed by the young child climbing up on your lap, and without being prompted, giving you a hug around the neck, which lasts a little bit longer than you thought possible.

The little one calling you Daddy believes you to be a god (or at least, Santa Claus’s right-hand man).

He is astounded at how you leave the house and come back with treasures—toys, pizza rolls and little tiny things you promised you’d get if you had time.

Daddy—a word that brings tears to the eyes of any father who knows that soon his power and authority will be challenged by the revolt of adolescence.

But for now, it’s Daddy.

For now, there’s a desire to be close.

For now, the child believes he has come from you and never wants to leave.

Maybe that’s why the Bible tells us that we should approach God by saying, “Abba, Abba.”

Which, by the way, translated from the Greek, means “Daddy, Daddy.”

 

Comply

Comply: (v) to act in accordance with a wish or command

There are two ideas that are dangerous.

  1. Drugs can be taken in moderation
  2. If it’s not my idea, I don’t like it as well.

Both of these assertions cause the human race to look like a barrel of monkeys placed in a dark warehouse, given five minutes to escape.funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

We were never meant to be frantic. Self-centered and unaware are two of the better ways to come across shredded and dismembered.

For after all, someone who will drink one glass of wine will easily begin to drink three without knowing when he or she moved to two. Just the facts.

And if you insist on following only the ideas that crop up in your mind, this limited experience will leave you jealous of those who are willing to comply, taking on the wisdom of friends and neighbors.

I comply.

I cannot tell you that I’ve always been one who complied, but the more I realized that my willpower is nonexistent and my intelligence does have fences and boundaries, the sooner I got to partake of the joys of sobriety and the blessings of being linked with great notions.

 

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Coerce

Coerce: (v) to persuade an unwilling person to do something by using force or threats.

Broken things need to be fixed. It’s just the honest-to-god truth.

Holding lives–or even damaged tables–together with a few temporary solutions just never works. Broken things always break apart even further–just at the worst times.

So somebody came up with the idea to take broken people, and try to degrade them in a pit of fear, hoping to coerce them into “being good” simply because they’re terrified of digging a deeper grave.

Sometimes we call it religion.

Other times, it’s just a series of laws put in place to intimidate.

But rather than healing the broken and making them stronger, we decide to prop them up with threats.

It never works.

You can never scare a teenager out of drinking alcohol or taking drugs.

You can never frighten a sinner from committing adultery.

And you can never coerce people who think they’re good to ever consider getting better. 

 

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Clampdown

Clampdown: (n) a severe or concerted attempt to suppress something.

I was a parent to six sons.

Three of them were my biological offspring, and for the other three, I was more or less a godfather (minus kissing the ring and slaughtering
my enemies).

Different experiences bring different quality. As a parent, you would love to pass on that sage wisdom to your children. It’s not really an issue of morality–it’s just that certain activities suck up more time, energy, heart and soul.

In other words, in the long run, they’re just not worth the payoff. For that reason, they’re rather obvious–but not to a fifteen year old kid.

  • Smoking looks cool until you start coughing.
  • Drinking may seem sophisticated until you vomit on your favorite pants.
  • Multiple sex partners almost seem ordained until your crotch starts to itch and you need a shot of penicillin.

So how is it possible to pass on to the growing organisms in your household how to avoid the stupidity of certain activities which not only fail to deliver in ultimate satisfaction, but certainly can be dangerous?

After conversations, pleadings and reasoning comes the possibility of clamping down.

Since your children will not remove themselves from temptation, you make a vain effort to take temptation far away from them. Of course, historically this only increases the fervent interest of the hapless adolescent.

I never drank, I never smoked, I never looked at a snapshot of porn–but all of my children, to some degree, have investigated these vices as if communing with a vicar.

I wish I could tell you that clamping down is an effective means of eliminating foolishness. But since being a fool is in the storehouse of every human being, whether we like it or not, he or she will probably pull it out at one time or another–and give it a spin.

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Age

Words from Dic(tionary)

dictionary with letter A

Age: (n) 1. the length of time that a person has lived 2. a period of history 3. (v) to grow older, especially visibly

When I was twelve, I really wanted to be thirteen. God, I ached all over! It was probably just the onset of puberty, but I didn’t know.

I really looked forward to eighteen, too. Twenty-one was cool, but since eighteen was the new voting age and I wasn’t that interested in drinking–not a big deal.

I felt a little giddy when I was twenty-five because I got to be in that group of “over twenty-five.”

Thirty put a chill down my spine, but then I realized I had nine more years for the decade. By forty I had so many kids that I barely remember the birthday.

Fifty was spooky. It’s when I really began to notice that age IS an issue. I don’t know–maybe my skin turned grayer, or I limped more, or wrinkles formed in my forehead? I’m not sure. But suddenly, everybody under the age of thirty started to treat me like a senior citizen.

It was quite frightening when the envelope arrived from AARP, inviting me to be a member. I recall how horrified I was the first time some teenage girl at Applebee’s asked me if I wanted to apply my senior citizen’s discount. A little piece of my soul wanted to roll over, crumple and die.

But I have especially noticed it this year, as I travel around the country. Younger folks think it’s powerful to treat me like I’m over the hill and couldn’t possibly have anything to share with anyone who isn’t eating their meals through a straw.

Actually, I think we have four different “ages:”

  1. An emotional age, which should be more mature, but most folks freeze at about thirteen.
  2. A spiritual age–a delicate blending of a child’s heart and the wisdom of Solomon.
  3. A mental age, only determined by how willing we are to continue to learn instead of pouring cement into our cranial cavity.
  4. And a physical age, which is strongly determined by genetics, lifestyle and willingness to exercise and consume fruits and vegetables.

If you average all four of those ages, you arrive at your actual number. You should try it.

By the way, I tallied mine. I came up with 43 years, 8 months.

That’s about right.