Cafeteria

Cafeteria: (n) a dining establishment in which customers serve themselves

My mother wouldn’t let me. (There are innumerable possibilities to go along with that statement.)

But in this case, it was eating in the cafeteria at school. Growing up, we lived so close to all of my schools that she insisted I come home
for lunch. So as is often the case in childhood, what you are forbidden to have becomes the source of your lust.

As I prepared to walk home to my house to eat my meager sandwich and soup, I would see all my friends on their way to the cafeteria to enjoy a mutual feast–and I assumed, great frivolity.

I felt cheated. I felt like an alien. I felt I had been presented a privilege which offered no visible benefit.

Then, one week my mother was going to be away helping out her sister, who was ill. She didn’t think it was right for me to come home without her there, so she gave me 75 cents a day, to eat in the cafeteria.

My joy knew no bounds. I was bouncing off the walls in anticipation. My friends squinted at me, confused about why I was so enthralled with eating at the common trough. They tried to explain to me that it was really pretty bad, and that I would be greatly disappointed.

But as I shuffled through the line, watching how my friends conducted themselves while conversing with the old women in hair nets who were dipping out the provision, I immediately noticed two obvious problems. All the food looked a little bit gray, and there wasn’t much of it.

For the first couple of days I pretended to enjoy the cuisine, but by the time Day Three came around, I found myself yearning for my fried bologna sandwich and tomato soup (with a few crackers.)

I made it through the fifth day, and when my mother returned on the weekend, she asked me if I would like to continue to eat in the cafeteria. I think she thought it was a pretty good deal–especially since she wouldn’t have to play cook and waitress for me at lunch time.

Inexplicably, I broke out in tears and was very embarrassed, but sobbed, “No, I wanna come home…”

It was pathetic.

But it was better than eating over-cooked macaroni, processed cheese and room temperature fruit cocktail.

 

 

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Boon

Boon: (n) a thing that is helpful or beneficial.

In the pursuit of progress, it is paramount that we learn what is so important to the human race that we dare not surrender it.Dictionary B

I completely agree that putting leeches on human skin to suck out the bad blood of disease was a horrible idea.

Turning Africans into slaves to work plantations without wages or a retirement plan was sinister.

But we must understand, there are certain attributes of virtue which cannot be compromised simply because they seem tedious.

In the past thirty years, love has been translated from an action into a sentiment.

This has been very subtle.

We have allowed our entertainers, our politicians and even our religionists to convince us that love is a high-sounding ideal, but most of the time beyond our grasp. Therefore, we are encouraged to settle for lesser representations, like friendliness, giving to the poor, or even lust.

There is only one boon to the human race.

There is only one condition that creates the oil of gladness that lubricates us for bumping up against one another.

It is love.

We cannot give up on it.

Matter of fact, our mission is to define it in such realistic ways that we just naturally pursue it.

Without this, we begin to believe that individuality is holy–instead of the communion of souls in gentle compromise.

 

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Blind

Blind: (adj) unable to see; sightlessDictionary B 

Visiting the Grand Canyon. Bad time to be blind.

A fireworks display. Be prepared to enjoy the bangs. Not a positive if you’re blind.

Running across some race situation, culture or individual where your prejudice is still rubbed a little raw by your ignorance. Blindness can be a plus.

A great teacher once said, “The blind cannot lead the blind or they’ll fall into the ditch.”

But the truth of the matter is, if the blind have already walked the path, then they are better ushers for other blind people than those with sight, trying to explain what lies ahead.

I’ve been blind.

  • I’ve been blinded by my bigotry.
  • I’ve been blinded by my sense of inadequacy.
  • I’ve been blinded by my greed.
  • I’ve certainly been blinded by my lust.

My blindness helps me understand my fellow-sightless-brothers and sisters.

Matter of fact, I’m not so sure that you can ever see unless you go through a season of being blind.

Certainly you’ll never appreciate it as much.

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Bind

Bind: (v) to tie or fasten something tightly.

Dictionary B

No one particularly cares for restrictions.

In other words, “you can do this but you can’t do that.”

It was the first error in judgment by the Creator when He offered diversity to Adam and Eve, but restricted them from one particular activity, which immediately caused them to lust to acquire it.

We don’t like no.

I suppose we could analyze that or call it rebellion.

Or we could intelligently surmise that human beings need a measure of rope, even if it does threaten to hang them.

Terms like:

  • A binding agreement.
  • Bind us together.
  • All bound up.

They make us squeamish, nervous and overly curious about the mystery of the hidden tease.

I will grant you that a certain amount of rules and regulations are necessary to maintain decency and order, keeping us from anarchy.

But whenever possible, people should be granted the freedom to err without condemnation, and to repent minus interference.

It’s not easy to achieve.

But I’ve always found that the organizations, churches, political parties and families which have the most binding rules also have the most disguised iniquity.

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Beelzebub

Beelzebub: (n) another name for the devil.Dictionary B

“Marty did it.”

When I was twelve years old, it was the favorite phrase of my friends and myself.

Marty was a scrawny, bespectacled, weak-willed, sweet farm boy who really didn’t have any power and only gained importance to us when we did something stupid, were trying to escape responsibility, and used him to displace our guilt.

You know what was interesting? It worked–because Marty didn’t really defend himself.

The teachers began to believe that he was the problem child, and even sent him to the guidance counselor for correction.

Marty was so desperate for attention that he somewhat enjoyed the accusations because it gave him identity.

I deeply regret that I was never able to apologize to Marty for making him become the sin-eater for all of our pranks.

After a while, I grew out of it.

I came to the conclusion that if I was going to become a functioning human being I needed to take responsibility for my own actions instead of using Marty as my excuse for iniquity.

Such is the case with Beelzebub.

The Old Devil gets blamed for everything except for those natural disasters we want to lay on God.

Beelzebub absorbs the attention and builds a false kingdom of power around his alleged misdeeds.

When we are childish in our spirituality, we yearn for Beelzebub to step in and take the blame for our shortcomings.

Matter of fact, this may be the sign of truly discovering God: the day you wake up and accept the ramifications of your deeds as your own doing instead of searching the terrain for a devilish accomplice.

Somewhere along the line, one has to conclude that we are known by our own fruits.

It is not Beelzebub that bedevils us.

It is our own lust that draws us away.

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Beat

Beat: (n) a main accent or rhythmic unit in music or poetry.Dictionary B

If you really don’t know the difference between good and bad, it’s easy to mix them up. All you have to do is listen to the wrong zealot.

There are people who are convinced they are right, and they’re very willing to do questionable things to promote their cause.

When I was a young boy and rock and roll was equally as adolescent, I was told that the beat of the music was set to the human heart rate so as to excite us and build up a “jungle fever,” which would make us do uncontrollable actions of lust.

The person sharing this was so convinced of his truth that he wrote a book. I, being naive, was converted–until I fell under the spell of the passionate beat.

As I’ve gotten older, I have realized that music is supposed to stimulate us. Trying to eliminate stimulation for fear that it might turn into sexual impropriety is to place our emotions in a box, hoping to find a high shelf where they cannot be touched.

It’s ridiculous.

We need a beat.

My God, today our country needs a spiritual and emotional beat to set the tempo for intelligent conversation and change. One group is too slow; the other at times seems to have uncontrollable rapidity.

What is the beat of change?

It would only make sense that it should correspond with our hearts … since without them, we seem incapable of sensing our better nature.

 

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Asexual

Asexual: (adj) without sexual feelings or associationsdictionary with letter A

Tommy was a dynamo.

He was one of my friends from high school, who was constantly interested in making out with girls, and was willing to go almost anywhere to do so.

Compared to the other guys in my class, he was a firecracker, and to some degree or another, the rest of us–fizzles.

He had boundless energy for any romantic activity with women.

I, on the other hand, was poised among the emotions of terror, intrigue, lust and intimidation. If you’re wondering what you get when you stir those together, the best term would be “stalled.”

Matter of fact, I wondered if I would ever actually have physical contact with a woman. What made it worse was that I frequently drove along in the car with Tommy, to have him pull over at some park where there would be a young lady waiting for him. He told me that he was going to fe back in a few minutes. They would spread a blanket not even forty yards away and I sat there for fifty minutes watching them make out.

There’s nothing sexy about that at all.

Truth of the matter is that human sexuality is not nearly so simple as “gay” or “straight.”

Some people seem to have huge libidos, which they use at will.

Other people are anxious to get married so they can carry on a once-a-year sexual calendar.

I suppose those who are hungry for love think the other people are asexual–but actually, we all, in our own way, have an interest in sexuality, and it varies so much that it certainly should not be a matter of debate or scrutiny.

As it turns out, I wasn’t asexual at all–just lacking in opportunity.

Tommy also settled down and married the least likely woman you would have thought such a Don Juan would pluck.

Sex is weird stuff.

Not so weird that we want to avoid it–just weird enough that we need the mercy of understanding from ourselves and others.

 

 

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