Curry Favor

Curry favor: (v) to seek to advance oneself

“All you have to do…”

I do believe I’ve heard them all.

I’m talking about those suggestions given by well-meaning souls to help place you in a position where you will be able to curry favor and …

  • Get the job.
  • Date the girl.
  • Secure the prize.
  • Win the position.
  • Or just garner an invitation.

I will be honest and tell you that I have followed much of that advice from time to time, having no reason to reject it.

I wanted to be “inside” something that presently was forbidden to me.

If I needed to use flattery or even a certain amount of deception, I was up to the challenge.

You know what I discovered?

I didn’t curry favor—I curried acceptance.

The favor was much more difficult to get.

But to simply be included—get a number, let in the door or granted a meeting—does allow the philosophy of “all you have to do” to pay off.

But if your intention is to make an impact, leave a lasting impression, advance a theory or establish yourself within the framework, then all the suggestions given to you to gain acceptance will falter.

For they never grant you the focus you need to be successful.

Weak people want to hear how good they are.

Strong people want to learn how to overcome their weakness, which they will often hide.

If you want to curry favor, you must:

  1. Help.

An obvious action of offering something that brings improvement.

  1. Give.

Take something of yourself and present it to assist a cause without trying to barter a deal.

  1. Listen.

Before you assume you know what to do, give ear to the sounds in the room so you can alter the negative and introduce the positive.

  1. Stop pushing. Carry.

Don’t try to promote yourself. Instead, carry some of the burden and make yourself immediately valuable to those who are weary.

We often have a mistaken idea that being nice or tough will get us in the door.

What actually opens the door is being kind and persistent.

funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

Culture

Culture: (n) a particular form or stage of civilization

What if I don’t like your color?

I can’t really say that—it makes me look like a bigot. I can’t let you know that I’ve been raised so sheltered that the hue of your skin gives me the creeps. I associate your color with matters that are not desirable.

All I really want is for you to stay away from me.

I have noticed that insulting you doesn’t cause you to disperse. I can talk behind your back and make you feel uncomfortable, but there’s always a chance you will defiantly remain.

I can insist that you’re inferior, but then every once in a while, you do things to disprove my contention.

What if I just don’t want to change my opinion? If I’m open-minded, my brain might slip out of its casing and wiggle away.

What can I do to make sure you stay away from me, but at the same time not incur your wrath or revenge?

What will cause us to remain separate without making it seem like it’s social segregation?

I do not want to be condemned by the self-righteous souls who think they’re superior because they learned how to tolerate you.

I don’t hate you—I just don’t want you. Shouldn’t I be allowed to get what I want? I mean, America being free and all.

So me and my friends got together and came up with this great idea.

We’re going to pretend that you are different by establishing how unique you are—how outstanding your customs and the climate in your community.

We will admire your cooking without ever partaking.

We will compliment your music without downloading a single song.

We will ooh and ahh over your costuming as if it’s coming from a faraway land, humiliating our beige and brown.

We will explain that you have a way of doing things that’s simply marvelous—as we have a way of doing things that is equally proficient.

We won’t talk about things like racial prejudice or fear of mixing.

We’ll call it culture.

It sounds so…well, cultured.

In doing so, we establish that you have found your way of doing things and we have found our way of doing things and there is no reason for the two paths to cross or for us to talk you out of your preferences and abandon ours.

We have invented a new racism.

It’s friendly, seems educated and is flexible.

You have a culture.

We have a culture.

Now, if you’ll be so kind, take yours over there and we’ll keep ours right here.

funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

Cultivate

Cultivate: (v) to promote or improve growth by labor and attention.

It is unfortunate that most religious individuals are so busy toeing the line—seeking God, criticizing sin and thinking of heaven—that they miss out on much of the beautiful poetry and insight contained in the Bible.

The Bible is like every other book I’ve read: there are parts I like, characters I enjoy, story lines I follow and truths I garner.

Within the Good Book, there is the parable of the farmer who plants seed in the ground. Then he sleeps—but he rises night and day to discover that the seeds have grown, but he does not really know how.

In the midst of that parable, this line appears:

“The Earth produces by itself.”

It’s so true.

We, as humans, actually rebel against the obvious, which steers us toward being kind and generous.

We have to be bratty to not see that the Earth itself teaches us to recognize one another in fairness and justice.

And we have to be total ignoramuses to resist the inclination to love rather than kill and destroy.

Our job is to plant seed.

After this, the Earth itself will show us how these efforts need to be cultivated:

  • What needs to be done to become an entrepreneur
  • What is required to be an excellent parent.
  • And the next steps needed to cultivate any venture and take it to a new level of growth.

Sometimes in America we forget to cultivate the way the Earth tells us. Then the weeds start showing up, and we begin believing that the weeds are in control.

Too bad. It’s a simple little system.

Plant your seeds.

Rise up and be astounded over the growth.

Then let the Earth itself tell you what to do next.

funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

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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Conspicuous

Conspicuous: (adj) standing out so as to be clearly visible

Moments of clarity are often easy to see but difficult to handle.

The greatest gift we give to ourselves is to have a totally candid awareness of how we come across to the world around us.

What is conspicuous about me?

  • I am fat.
  • I am bald.
  • I can’t grow a beard.
  • I have no eyebrows.
  • I am friendly.
  • I am relatively kind.
  • I’m not terribly opinionated. (At least that’s my opinion.)
  • I like to laugh.
  • I like to be funny.
  • I like to be aware of what’s going on in the world around me.
  • I like to make eye contact when I listen.
  • I probably think too deeply for the average person’s preference.
  • I sometimes start a list and make it too long.

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Confusion

Congenial: (adj) a pleasant personality

If you will allow me to advance this theory–human virtue rarely travels alone.

This is what often perplexes those who are trying to improve their image.

For instance, someone says you are not kind enough, so you attempt to “go out and be kind”–only to return by mid-day, spitting, cussing and swearing never again to pursue such a farce.

The reason for the failure is that kindness does not work by itself. Kindness needs to team up with a couple of other contributors. Those two friends are patiencefunny wisdom on words that begin with a C
and joy.

Otherwise, you will find yourself being kind to the unkind, and rather than patiently waiting for your overtures to pay off with the next traveler, you will give up, not allowing your joy to give you the strength to be kind again.

Congenial is an idea, but not really one that is easily put into practice. We often regret being gentle when others respond in a gruff manner.

If you truly want to achieve the attribute of congeniality, then it is necessary to link your kindness with some enduring patience, knowing that the joy that will come through the victory will propel you on to a lifestyle of openness.

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Civil

Civil: (adj) courteous and polite.

Civil is what you end up with when you can’t convince people to be kind but you’ve talked them out of being assholes.

The possibility of showing mercy seems weak to them, but they would like to escape the “old man” or “old woman” profile of grumpy.

Now, there’s an aspiration.

Stop judging people because they’re not nice.

Stop judging people because they’re not nice enough.

Here’s an idea: stop judging people.

Instead, look for reasonable acts of civility. Don’t demand kindness. Maybe that’s just a profile reserved for saints. What we’re looking for is civility. Civility is the presence of a realization with a threat hanging over it. Simply stated:

“You can have what you want as long as you let everybody else have what they want. The minute you don’t let other people have what they want, you cease to have what you want.”

As long as our “wanter” is not killing people, stealing or destroying, it should be taken into consideration and given equal place with the “wanters” of others.

This is called civil.

It’s a decision to refuse to overlord (since you’re not really a god in the first place.)

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