Cordial

Cordial: (adj) courteous and gracious; friendly; warm:

“It doesn’t work! Not nowadays!”

That’s the statement flung in my direction whenever I suggest that kindness, gentleness and being cordial is a viable option to bitterness, strife and animosity.

It seems the entire human race is frightened by the prospect that being merciful is setting them up, like a golf ball on a tee, to be driven far, far away by a funny wisdom on words that begin with a C
smack with a club.

Yet no one sits down and asks the simple question, “What happens when people are no longer intimidated by your bad attitude?”

You may frighten people off by being suspicious, nasty and unfriendly, but eventually, someone will be terror-free, and others will learn to shed their fear of you. Then they will come with torches and pitchforks, to kill the Frankenstein who was so rude to them.

That would be you.

There’s one thing for certain—no one has to go to bed nervous, asking him or herself, “Is my cordial attitude going to backfire on me?”

There’s a peace that follows being peaceful.

There’s a blessedness attached to being a peace-maker.

It is so precious that people will begin to believe that you’re a child of God.

The bravest thing you can ever do in your life is to refuse to fight, argue, attack and brutalize another human being. The risk is that they will still turn on you and destroy you while you stand there, helpless.

But there is the possibility that your unwillingness to draw blood in conflict with them will at least give them pause.

If you refuse to join the battle, any further attack makes them murderers if they kill you, not warriors.

Cordial people survive to have great-grandchildren and write the history books about those they out-loved.


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Copious

Copious: (adj) large in quantity

Memorable.

What is memorable about us?

It’s going to be something large—because after all, the human race is just a bunch of children with jobs and credit.

We’re impressed by big.

We remember things that stand out.funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

We file away, in our minds, that which is huge and obvious.

What is copious about me? Normally the word describes the amount of notes someone takes on a subject (although I’m not quite sure what copious notes are since what we really need are sufficient notes).

But…

I am copiously overweight.

I am copiously bald (though no one would actually say that.)

Copious is a word that exists but is ignored because we don’t want to appear that we’re judging things by how immense they seem.

Each of us has a copious personality. It is the part of us that juts out long before we have the chance to contradict it with our intelligence.

What can we do to avoid the more copious parts of ourselves, overwhelming the message we want to convey to those around us?

Although we hope that grace and mercy will get us through the tough times, we must understand that the only thing we can do to create copious evidence of who we are is to push forth our good works—or our bad works. Ultimately, we will be known by what we considered important enough to do.

Therefore, I shall work on being copiously generous, copiously kind and copiously creative.

Who knows? Maybe someone will notice instead of staring at my belly fat.


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Coot

Coot: (n) a foolish or crotchety person, especially one who is old

I have officially become old enough to become a coot. I’m not sure what age qualifies you, but age is certainly a factor.

There are other considerations:

Coots always talk about “how good things used to be.”

Coots tend to refer to society as using a “handbasket on their way to hell.”

Coots pine for a time when they were younger and full of energy.funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

I honestly don’t feel any of that whatsoever.

Many of my growing-up years were filled with ignorance, prejudice, anger, self-righteousness and bloodshed in an unrighteous war. So I don’t yearn to go back—I just insist that there are two things the human race can’t live without, and we should cease deleting them from our browser.

Human beings must have empathy and self-deprecation. If you don’t like the idea of self-deprecation, then insert humility.

When we stop feeling empathy for the man or woman next to us, we become enemies to our own species, similar to a bee who plots with the flies to steal the honey.

And when we don’t produce adequate humility, the obnoxious odor that comes off our being chases people from the room.

I’m not an old coot.  I don’t care who you sleep with. I don’t care what your political party is. I don’t care what your faith or lack of faith might be.

But when you mess with empathy and humility, I will dig my heels in, because then you’re plotting the destruction of the human race—of which I am proudly a member.


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Convince

Convince: (v) to persuade; cajole

That would be terrific.

if we could actually persuade or cajole someone to be convinced of a great idea, the human race could leap ahead by several yardsticks of improvement.

But stubbornness prohibits us from persuasion and cynicism causes us to reject being cajoled.funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

Unfortunately, our human family is mainly convinced by being alarmed or threatened.

This opens the door to all sorts of nasty characters, who invent ridiculous scenarios of danger, and manipulate brothers and sisters to turn into enemies.

Therefore, I have to ask myself: rather than criticizing this weakness in humanity, which makes us afraid of almost anything, how can I transform my own life into a situation where I can be persuaded or cajoled?

Can I stay loose enough in my opinions that the insertion of knowledge and common sense can sway me to better paths? Can I realize that being angry has very little to do with being productive, and that nice guys don’t finish last—they just finish so early that they’re in the locker room, having already taken their shower.


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Controversy

Controversy: (n) a prolonged public dispute

It seems to have become a pastime of the human race—to make every statement, thought, feeling and action controversial.

It’s a way for us to feel important, by judging the world and the people around us.funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

But factually, the only legitimate door of controversy—the true opportunity to open a discussion which might warrant disagreement—is when common sense has been broached.

What is common sense?

It’s the glue that holds the dust of humanity together. It’s what we’ve learned from Adam to now—to be functional, workable and pleasing.

Every once in a while, common sense has to be challenged, because it failed to keep the door open long enough to include all of God’s people on the ark of safety.

Then we have a reason for controversy. For instance:

Are black people lesser than white people?

At one time, common sense said they were, so it had to be challenged and amended.

Are gay people perverts?

The common sense at one time, even among the psychiatric community, was that they were. Therefore, some controversy was necessary to embrace our brothers and sisters who found themselves in that situation.

Controversy is not somebody doing something you don’t like.

Controversy should only happen when the common sense we have all accepted needs to be challenged and expanded.

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Contrast

Contrast: (v) to compare to show differences

 If dinosaurs had figured out how to get along with each other instead of hanging out in packs of those who were similar in style, then I don’t know funny wisdom on words that begin with a Cwhether the human race would have been given the chance to occupy the planet.

So perhaps it’s time for us to learn from the dinosaur’s mistake, which is:

If raptors hang out with raptors, and the T. Rex only hangs around with other T. Rexes, pretty soon everyone who doesn’t have exactly the same height, weight and scaly skin that you do is an enemy—to be attacked and eaten.

Dinosaurs were very successful at contrasting their differences, which stalled cooperation and promoted conflict.

Nowadays, some ingenious individual with a doctorate sits in his or her laboratory and decides the best way for human beings to get along is to contrast their differences, teaching us to be tolerant based upon those discoveries.

Lo and behold, just like the dinosaurs, once things are contrasted, we start wanting to hang around those who look, act, agree, walk and talk just like us—and rather than having an epiphany of appreciation for those who are different, we consciously, or even unconsciously, alienate them as inferior, and eventually contrive ways to attack and hurt them.

If dinosaurs had realized they were all dinosaurs—that they were covered with similar skin texture, though it may have differed in color—they could have ruled the world for many more millennia.

But they contrasted.

They found differences.

And in finding them they created adversaries instead of commonality.

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Constructive

Constructive: (adj) serving a useful purpose; tending to build up

Unfortunately, the word “criticism” seems to have been welded onto “constructive.”

Matter of fact, people frequently talk to me about constructive criticism–how powerful it was for them in honing up their project or beefing up their efforts.

I am not convinced.

So let me be the first one to say that these two words need to be disconnected from each other once and for all.funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

There are things that are constructive and there are things that are critical. There is no such thing as constructive criticism.

If you’re trying to be constructive, there is no need to be critical.

And if the intention is to establish your value to another person by criticizing, be prepared: it is unlikely that this will have a constructive result.

You can feel free to have constructive remarks, constructive questions, constructive concerns–but once you enter the cave of criticism, you’ve already darkened yourself as an authority to whom others need to bow.

If you really want to be constructive, here are the three questions you should ask someone if you think what he or she is pursuing needs another point of view:

  1. What is it you are trying to achieve?
  2. This is what I got off of it. Is that all right?
  3. Is this what you were looking for?

You can ask these three questions any time, and unless someone is dealing with severe anger management issues, they will be responsive and listen.

But if you change this to “constructive criticism,” which, by the way, is merely altering the questions into statements–(for instance, “I don’t know what you’re trying to achieve,” “I didn’t get it” and “I don’t think other people will comprehend your message either”)–these statements are bruising.

You do not need to agree with me on this, but I contend that merely switching the statements to questions does not take away your power of input.

It merely removes your position of superiority.

 

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Mr. Kringle's Tales...26 Stories 'Til Christmas

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