Decorum

Decorum: (adj) dignified propriety of behavior, speech, dress, etc.

Underlings always consider rules to be unnecessary.

Those in middle management view rules as a way to lord it over the underlings.

And the actual managers of any endeavor consider rules the best way to avoid chaos.

Yet the question should be asked, how much decorum is necessary to keep us from falling into a great pit of meaningless activity?

How many restrictions are required to restrict us enough so that we don’t do stupid things?

How much freedom can be allotted to a person who spends all of his time doing nothing but screaming for freedom?

What does a human being need and what causes a human being to become needy?

I think it all revolves around the word invested.

If I have nothing invested in a project or a blessing waiting for me in the outcome, it will be difficult to convince me to maintain decorum or hit the marks just right in order to top dogs.

One of the worst things we can do for human beings is tell them that their part is not that important, and the result has nothing to do with their contribution.

It seems comical to me that the people who make the least amount of money actually touch our lives the most.

  • People who make fast food
  • Grocery store clerks
  • Those who handle produce
  • Mechanics
  • And even individuals who are in charge of driving here and there and are given “Uber” responsibility with minimal reward.

It would be intelligent to pay those who could poison us with more coins, and even more appreciation.

But instead, we ask for decorum without offering much incentive.

If you come and join me in a project, I will make sure you’re invested.

I will let you know how intricate you are to the workings, and it will be true instead of just a bunch of hype.

Because if I don’t need people to work, I don’t hire them. And if I do need them to work, I treasure them.

Don’t ask a human being to toe a line and maintain decorum unless at the end of that toe-job, there is an obvious prize.

 

Declaration

Declaration: (n) an announcement

It is virtually impossible to think about the word “declaration” without completing it with “of Independence.”

You know why?

They lucked out.

In other words, if they had declared independence and lost the war, we would be looking for a declaration of something else.

And keep in mind, our forefathers tried real hard to lose.

If you study history, their habits, prejudices and analyze their whining, it’s a wonder they were able to actually put together the document itself.

If there is a possible way to do it wrong, the Continental Congress, George Washington and all the colonists found it.

They didn’t know what they were doing.

Mistakes were made.

Maybe before starting a war, you could have an army. And in the process of gathering that army, you could make sure they had guns, food to eat, and refrained from shooting each other.

The thirteen colonies did not agree on anything.

Except all of them hated King George.

King George III has been documented by history to be certifiably insane.

If there had been a nicer or better king in England, we all would be eating a helluva lot more fish and chips.

So in the pursuit of a declaration, keep in mind that someone might come along and stick a musket up your nose and say, “Prove it.”

When this happens?

Be prepared to fumble, falter and fail your way to freedom.

 

Davis, Jefferson

Davis, Jefferson: (n) man who served as president of the Confederacy throughout its existence.

I’m not brave.

I am not a warrior for the truth.

I am not the kind to run up, state my opinion and stand my ground.

I prefer to appear from behind with a squirt gun, spray everyone and scamper away.

But there are certain things that elevate my consciousness, stimulate my “god-image” and demand that I build a fortress.

I spent most of my adult life living in the American South.

On one occasion, I overheard a gentleman talking about hosting a “minstrel show” in the community. I immediately assumed I misunderstood what he said, but when he sounded it out for me slowly, I realized that he intended on producing a program that was begun in the Confederacy after the Civil War, which allowed white people to dress up in blackface and make fun of the Negroes.

I was confused.

I thought minstrel shows had been outlawed years ago.

Now, here was the word, flying through the air as if it had wings.

For a moment I was emblazoned with a ready hostility—but still, tepidly opined, “Aren’t those illegal?”

The man became indignant and explained that minstrel shows were part of the heritage of the South and gave the people in that region a sense of pride over what had been pursued attempted by President Jefferson Davis and all the Rebels.

“What was that?” I asked.

“Freedom,” he replied.

Even if I were to buy in to the idea that Robert E. Lee, Stonewall Jackson and Jefferson Davis were just trying to “protect their way of life,” I would still be left with a stark anomaly.

If the Civil War was all about “state’s rights,” standing up to Washington, D. C., and not being pushed around anymore, why not just free the slaves and change the dynamic?

If it really wasn’t a malicious adventure to keep four million kidnapped human beings in chains and forced labor, why not just take the higher ground and convince the entire world that you were merely out to sanctify your choices instead of imprison human flesh?

Jefferson Davis was not a nice man.

I suppose if you sat down and had a drink with him and shared some boiled crawdads, you might find him amiable.

But on the inside was a greedy, corrupt man who insisted that black humans were mongrels and needed white people to help them reason.

And he did all of this standing in front of a church, holding a Bible in his hand.

Danger

Danger: (n) risk, peril

“Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.”

Perhaps danger is in the heart of the fearful.

There is legitimate danger. Becoming too familiar with a tiger during feeding times is not faith, but rather foolishness lending itself to lethal danger.

But some things are not dangerous. Some things are poorly marked that way, by the timid minds of those who are afraid of human freedom.

My last year of attending church camp was froth with controversy.

The counselors were convinced that the best way to avoid difficulty was to cut any danger off at the pass. “Danger,” in this case, referred to activities which might stimulate teenagers to think about sex.

It is fascinating to me that once people cross the age of twenty-one, they forget that sex, to a teenager, is not a thought nor a temptation but instead, oxygen to breathe. Curiosity, sensuality, raging hormones and immense amounts of energy always collide in some way to manipulate an indiscretion.

We were given five simple rules for high school campers:

  1. Boys and girls were never to be left alone without supervision.
  2. Girls could not wear bathing suits around boys, only knee-length shorts and appropriate tops.
  3. Dirty jokes were forbidden, and if continued, would result in expulsion from camp.
  4. Girls would dine with girls and boys with boys.
  5. When swimming in the lake, a distance of two feet must be maintained between a girl and a guy.

The list ended with this admonition:

“In following these guidelines, we hope to avoid the danger of promiscuity and illicit behavior.”

Yet, nature always makes a way.

That summer, all the guys and girls learned of a cave just outside the camp, which was quickly referred to as “The Humping Hole.”

The girls—adorned in their knee-length shorts—would go in with their favorite guy, and hump through their clothes.

I will tell you—it was much more popular than the class on the missionary journeys of the Apostle Paul.

Girls and guys also learned how to sit in such a configuration that they could hold hands behind their backs, and counselors never saw what was going on.

There was always a way, where there seemed to be no way, for teenagers to be horny.

For you see, the only danger in life is ignorance.

The more you know about a situation and the greater the knowledge you can possess, the better chance you have of escaping tragedy and forming a plan that is blessed by honesty and truly works.

Cyanide

Cyanide: (n) a salt of hydrocyanic acid, as potassium cyanide, KCN.

 If, in your job description, there are instructions describing the circumstances, conditions or situations in which you are required to drop cyanide tablets in your mouth to commit suicide, then, in my opinion, you’ve chosen a poor profession.

I don’t care for any philosophy, religion or nationalism that promotes the idea that ultimate devotion requires the loss of life.

For instance, I would be very happy to assist my country in diplomacy, giving food to the hungry or even trying to find a way to motivate myself to dig a ditch.

But when you refer to the ultimate sacrifice—that being, giving your life in a war for freedom—I must tell you, I find this hideous.

Likewise, in Christianity, when they discuss the disciples becoming martyrs for the faith, I have a tendency to mull over the possibility that there might have been a way to skip out of the pagan land that was so pissed with their preaching and just go to more receptive audiences.

I know this might make me sound shallow.

But death, suicide and popping cyanide in the last moments to make sure you are not captured and interrogated is not only unappealing, but anti-human and anti-common sense.

I will not dwell with those who revere death as the supreme statement of consecration without objecting to such futility in favor of using our hands, our minds and our spirits to enhance the world.

Certainly this eliminates me from being a spy.

I probably will never work for the CIA.

Even the FBI might pass me over in favor of a more death-willing applicant.

 

funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

Cul-de-sac

Cul-de-sac: a street or lane closed at one end.

Because the traffic does not flow through, all the neighbors at the end of a cul-de-sac end up being fully aware of the life and times of the people around them, simply because they know—or certainly believe—that there’s little beyond them.

It seems to me to be a very dangerous thing—to try to turn our country into a cul-de-sac.

Is America a cul-de-sac, where we know our neighbors, we know their cars, we know their pets—so anyone who happens to turn down in our direction is either lost or an intruder?

How selfish can you be with the idea of freedom?

Every group of people—every nation or tribe that has contended they had superiority over the other inhabitants of Earth usually ended up vicious, arrogant and destroyed.

Do we really want to exist in a time when nostalgia rules our thoughts?

Where fear of the enemy makes more of them in our minds than there actually are?

Do we want to sit at the end of our American cul-de-sac, conversing on our porches, glaring at the travelers who happen to have turned down the road into our space, looking for freedom?

There’s something really bizarre about a cul-de-sac.

I’ve only lived on one, and I didn’t stay long enough to be part of the “chosen four”—those houses near the end that cluster and become intolerant about accepting any other.

Because if you believe you have a special thing that sets you apart, other groups may want to come and steal it from you and will become very angry when they realize that you never had anything worth killing for.

funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

Cryptic

Cryptic: (adj) mysterious in meaning; puzzling; ambiguous

Some examples of cryptic thoughts.

It certainly was fortunate that there were ignorant black people in Africa so that American slavery could prosper.

President Trump would be a fabulous leader if he knew where he was going.

It is ironic that the Jews would consider it anti-Semitic to be blamed for the crucifixion of Jesus, even though their Council cast the votes.

Men and women are equally talented and intelligent—and there the equality ceases.

I shot an arrow into the air and I sure as hell hope it didn’t kill anybody.

I am happiest when I know some people are sad because there seems to be a limited amount of happiness.

The best Republican President acted like he was a Democrat.

The best Democrat President was probably a secret Republican.

People don’t seem to be able to just enjoy sex without thinking they are the best at it.

The more we envy others, the less the chance of ever possessing what they have.

Religion is about as close to God as politics is to freedom.

You can always tell when a nation is failing—it attacks its poets.

I blame myself for trusting you to have the intelligence to make the decision that has now ruined us both.

These are some examples of cryptic statements.

Such talk is fun.

Such talk is clever.

Such talk can start wars.

 

funny wisdom on words that begin with a C



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Crop Rotation

Crop rotation: (n) the system of varying the planting of successive crops

Sometimes I’m a bit saddened when a good idea sprouts to the surface.

It’s similar to when early farmers planted crops and the bounty was so immense that they planted them over and over and over again—until all the nutrients were drained from the soil and the returns became less and less and less.

Finally, someone realized that if they planted different crops for a while, they could come back and plant the original crop again and get fruitfulness from all.

In our day, a good idea will come along—shall we say, a fresh crop—and because it worked so well or was received with joy, it’s planted over and over again, until eventually it is so common that the impact it once had is gone.

It’s a little procedure that runs like this:

  1. The arrival of the great idea.
  2. The mass production by the imitators.
  3. The deterioration of the idea as the cheapskates come along and debilitate it.
  4. The cynics who mock the copycats, making us believe there was never a good idea in the first place.

Rotate your crops.

If something great happens, don’t assume it’s going to happen again. Isn’t that why we call it great—because it doesn’t happen all the time?

In the process of rotating your crops, you won’t get tired of corn because soybeans will need to be sold.

Likewise, you won’t get tired of love because it’s so plentiful.

America is a great idea. It’s not worn out.

But it would benefit us to rotate fresh concepts into our lives—so the beautiful topsoil of freedom can have a chance to build itself back up with the nutrients that truly do enable us able to say, “Hat’s off. This is great.”

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Crop

Crop: (n) the produce from the ground.

As the piercing tones of the political pundits wrangle with one another over decibel level, it never occurs to anyone that the United States of America cannot be compared to any other place, because unlike these other locations, this nation has a heart, a soul, a mind and a body.

Without understanding this, you begin to believe that you can nurture the mind of America while ignoring the heart, soul and body—or foolishly believe that you can honor the soul and ignore the other parts of innovation.

During my nearly thirty-five years of travel across the country, stopping off in villages, towns or bustling cities, I immediately understood the crop that comes from the soil of this great nation.

America has heart.

It has emotion. If you live on the coasts, you may think that the middle states are agrarian and backward. Matter of fact, there are people who would not even know what the word agrarian means because they consider it backward.

On the other hand, if you land somewhere deep in Nebraska, the antics of the West Coast may be discussed over the dinner table with a sneer and a frown, as those huddled around faithfully consume their biscuits and butter.

You cannot love this country, its people, its purpose, nor envision its destination without traveling to its heart, musing over its soul, mulling its mind and allowing the body to bring strength to the economics and the gross national product.

What is the crop of America?

  • Iowa believes it’s corn.
  • Silicon Valley in California would insist it’s technology.
  • The Ivy League schools on the East Coast would certainly extol the importance of higher education.
  • And those who dwell in the South will spend hours testifying of the importance of family, devotion and hospitality.

It is difficult for us to be at war with each other.

We need one another so intensely that we end up really fighting ourselves.

So when I drove my van into beautiful downtown Cedar Rapids, Iowa, with corn fields and soybeans surrounding my journey, I knew I was in for an evening of warmth, reflection and conservative reaction to new ideas. They were never averse to progress—just wanted to make sure that no sacred lanes were destroyed to make super-highways.

When I went down to Lebanon, Tennessee, I was fully aware I was in for an evening of a probable potluck dinner, some hand clapping and folks who were frightened that they might lose the spirit of their faith by accepting too much of what, for them, seemed abnormal.

In a journey out to Palo Alto, California, surrounded by the students and faculty of Stanford University, my heart was engorged with the explosive energy of learning, experimenting and researching to find answers to problems that plague the populace.

And then, finding myself weeks later in New York City, I watched the ships come and go, feeding an economy which generates the crop of prosperity, making the whole landscape well-funded.

What is the crop of America?

It is the freedom to have a heart, a soul, a mind and a body—and to treasure each and every part.

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Crew Cut

funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

Crew cut: (n) a haircut in which the hair is very closely cropped.

It was a simple time.

People were determined to keep it that way, even though freedom, complexity and disruption were on the horizon, threatening to alter the beige tint of society with a flash of paisley.

In that brief moment, I lived and breathed and had my childhood.

One of the common things that was completely understood in my small town was the issue of men’s hair.

There were only three choices.

Some very bold youngsters started growing their hair to where it flirted with touching the top of the earlobe. They were subject to ridicule and made a grower of such a frock worthy of mock. They were deemed “hippies” and were considered part of the counterculture threatening to make America diverse.

The second type of hairdo was referred to as “the regular.”

This was where the young man was to get his hair cut as far away from his ears and collar as possible, leaving atop a tiny patch resembling crab grass. Even though it was not hippie, those who sported the regular haircut were suspicious. They were possibly Democrats or homos, which in our village, were both abominable.

Although it was never stated out loud, the only truly acceptable haircut for anyone under the age of eighteen was the crew cut. Matter of fact, if you peruse old rock and roll albums, many of the singers still sported it. It was the same kind of head shaving you would get if you went into the military. It was uniform, with a tiny berm of hair in the front, greased down so as not to become flyaway.

You knew this—whenever you encountered a person with a crew cut, you were staring into the face of a true American who loved God, hated sin and was determined to keep America whatever America was at that particular moment.

At one time I considered getting a crew cut.

However, my face was so chubby I was afraid my cheeks would puff out and I would be caught up in a wind gust and carried away. So I maintained my regular haircut until my senior year in high school, when I began to grow hair on the sides of my head that was long enough to be combed down to cover the tips of my ears when I was away from adults, and combed back to barely pass muster in grown-up world.

It was a foolish time in this country.

A dangerous assertion persisted–that human beings could be stopped and immobilized, avoiding a hairy situation.

 


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