Autograph

Autograph: (n) a signature, especially that of a celebrity written as a memento for an admirer.

Life is an elevator.dictionary with letter A

The same blessing that takes you up is the shaft that brings you down. It all depends on the buttons you push.

I learn this all the time.

Having authored a number of books, I often have people asking for my autograph. It is a very kind gesture.

I never get tired of the jolt of joy that comes into my soul, realizing that someone has first of all treasured my writings enough to purchase them, but also wants me to put my name on them.

It’s exciting.

I even practiced my signature to make sure that it looked “authorian” and had a certain flair that exuded eccentricity.

So one day, having some time on my hands, I perused the Internet, seeking out information on my name and the books I had written.

I was drawn to this website where used books were offered at reduced rates. I discovered that many of my volumes were available–and almost every one of them advertised that it was “signed by the author,” supposedly thus giving it some extra clout.

But to my great dismay, many of these copies I had signed had been discounted even from their original reduced rate–down so low that one of my books was being offered for 59 cents.

So not only was my original work and inspiration diminished in value, but apparently by adding my signature to the equation, no greater wealth was calculated.

It made me realize that I had better enjoy the elevator of autographing when it’s going up.

Because eventually it will come back down…into the bargain bin.

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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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Affable

Words from Dic(tionary)

dictionary with letter AAffable: (adj) friendly, good-natured or easy to talk to e.g. an affable and agreeable companion.

The most important mission for any human being at this hour in history is to fight off, with great ferocity every inclination to join the vast ranks of the perniciously cynical.

To do this, we must begin to believe that it is possible for someone to be affable, joyous, friendly and open, without setting us up to gain a handout or manipulate us into buying something from them that is broken.

What we have begun to call “street wise” or even “prudent” is chock-full of sarcasm or even indifference, which is gradually smothering a dying breed of affable souls.

Getting into an elevator two days ago, I told the gentleman next to me that I was having a good day and hoped that he was, too. What thrust forth from every pore in his being was a combination of fear, sneering, anxiety and resentment towards my overture.

Probably three years ago I would have become angry at being rebuffed for simply being outgoing. But instead, I just became quiet. There is no way to argue with coldness. In so doing, you become frigid yourself.

I will continue to cast my pearls into the marketplace of life, but will certainly follow the advice of to avoid the presence of those who “oink” instead of returning with a “How do you do?”

It is well worth the effort.

“Affable” may be the only way we have to overcome the anger that lies beneath the surface of all the frustrated dreamers.

Adorable

Words from Dic(tionary)

dictionary with letter A

Adorable: (adj) inspiring great affection; delightful; charming: e.g. she looked adorable

FBY.

It’s my new abbreviation for Facebook Yap.”

I, for one, have always been suspicious of anything that steps in to replace something of importance which really does not capture the value–just fills the space.

Muzak, for instance, is no substitute for a concert. It deserves to be in an elevator, enclosed and prevented from being broadcast to too many corners of the earth.

That’s what I feel about the conversations, chatter and implications of Facebook.

So when I look at the word “adorable,” which used to have some tenderness, in my mind it has just become a way to describe a picture you received from someone, which you did not ask for, of their dog or child, and you are desperately groping for a way to tell the person you received it. so you send back a quick message, which says, “adorable” with twenty-four exclamation points. (!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!)

FBY has ruined so many words.

I can no longer use “cute,” especially S-O-O-O-O-O-O-O cute.

“Inspiring” is gone, since any little piece of drivel someone sends that they feel has a deeper meaning you must proclaim to be divinely unctioned.

Some of the old standards which should have died a long time ago have been dug up from the grave and re-shot in the head:

  • “They’re growing up so fast …”
  • “You can tell they’re in love …”
  • “I miss you …”
  • “Wish you were here …” and
  • “It’s really been a rough day …”

It saddens me–because there ARE things in life that truly are adorable. I once watched a bug try to crawl up a tree. Every time it got to the same place, gravity took over and it would fall. The little critter tried about seven times, and then apparently tapped some unused brain cells and decided to walk around the tree instead. That’s kind of adorable.

But when we have created a medium which focuses on US more than anything else, we have to also conjure a response to the offerings of others who intrude on our self-promotion by sending their own press clippings.

I have made the mistake of trying to write something truly significant or meaningful in one of the “comment” spaces, only to be ignored, and probably relegated as a “non-FBY’er” who still believes in complete sentences and knows the difference between “your” and “you’re.”

I value progress–as long as it goes FORWARD.

But I’m not willing to call something progressive that takes us back to the status of scrawling on cave walls, stepping back and grunting our approval.