Business

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Business: (n) the practice of commerce.

“Business as usual.”

Maybe if we clarified what “usual” is, we might have a better idea of the true nature of business.

If by business we mean simply finding a way to create commerce without any real concern except profit margin, then we unleash an unruly effort on the world that doesn’t seem to answer to any higher guideline.

But if we know what the “usual” is of business, and that “usual” has productive roots, then business can be a good thing–matter of fact, the heart of every endeavor.

For even the Good Book tells us not to be slothful in business. What is slothful in business?

Anyone who starts a storefront or an Internet escapade should ask two questions:

  1. Is this needed?
  2. Can I maintain quality?

Because if it’s not needed, it not only will have a short life, but it continues to increase the cynicism about true ingenuity in the marketplace.

And if the essence of quality if sacrified to manufacturing costs, then people will cynically hold a broken piece of junk in their hands that makes them further suspicious of the world as a whole.

Slothful in business is when we’re more concerned with producing than we are with being productive.

Not every corporation needs to have a noble cause–but everyone who decides to market a product needs to be able to give a quick explanation of its purpose and value, and also a guarantee that it was put together with tender, loving care.

Anyone who thinks that’s unrealistic will probably find him or herself in a slothful profile. And anyone who asks the two magic questions–is it needed and can I maintain quality?–is helping to build the trust among humans that is necessary to keep us from self-destruction.

 

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Brie

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Brie: (n) a kind of soft, mild, creamy cheese with a firm white skin

I’m as guilty as the next person in finding practices, methods and terminologies that are considered to be preferred, and then promoting them to let folks know how cool I am.Dictionary B

I will drop a brand name at just the right moment to confirm that I am aware of fashion.

I will mention a particular book I read or movie I saw to explain the depth of my current affairs.

So recently when I was planning a party and I brought up the word “cheese,” what came to my mind was Swiss, mozzarella, provolone or cheddar. If there were budget constraints I would even consider Velveeta. I inadvertently mentioned everything (except Velveeta) and a friend lurched back in horror, explaining that these were not cheeses–merely marketable molds.

I was told that Brie was the only acceptable variety that could be served at a party for “know-about-its.” Anything else placed on a platter would appear to either have been an accident or an affrontation.

I was especially startled when I discovered the price of this cheese, and realized that someone had succeeded in marketing their particular sour milk product as “refined”–to the detriment of other Wisconsin standards.

I have to admit to you that I took a risk.

I bought a cheese that looked like Brie and put it on the plate, assuming that no one knew what the product was–just desired confirmation that it was “the good stuff.”

Comically, they ate the “cheese food” product all night long, content that they were among the elite, consuming Brie. Donate ButtonThank you for enjoying Words from Dic(tionary) —  J.R. Practix 


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Background

Background (n) the circumstances or situation prevailing at a particular time or underlying a particular event.

“What’s your background?”Dictionary B

A very popular question.

I learned many years ago to dodge all inquiries which attempt to squeeze me into a favorable box.

Once people discover the roots of my nationality, the place of my birth, my chosen occupation and even my favorite color, for some reason, these nosy neighbors determine that they know enough about me to converse with me–or even market a product–in my direction.

I believe this is why we’re so juiced up on the idea of cultures and customs. Because once we determine that somebody is from Jamaica, then we are most assuredly confident that they must love reggae music.

So how difficult is it to be a rock and roll advocate and live in Jamaica?

How absolutely frustrating must it be to live in Wisconsin and have never eaten cheese?

Can you actually dwell in Iowa or Nebraska without having a running dialogue on raising corn?

The thing that makes us most uninteresting is the thing that we seem to pursue with great fervor.

“Let me shrink who you are so that who you are will fit into what I need you to be.”

So even as I watch the phenomenon of the gay community gaining credence in our society, television insists that all gay people speak with a lisp, love theater, cry at the drop of a hat and are basically snarky.

So what are we really achieving when we claim to be accepting of people–but we’re really only accepting of people when they arrive in large, definable clumps?

I will not tell you my background.

What I will share is my present footing and what I dream to be my foreground.

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Acquaint

Words from Dic(tionary)

by J. R. Practix

dictionary with letter A

  Acquaint: (v.) to make someone aware of or familiar with: e.g. “let me acquaint you with your new staff.”

Aware. Familiar.

There are so many forces at work, trying to snatch my awareness and force me to become familiar with their rendition of the truth or their innovative marketing scheme.

I am in danger of becoming a red rubber ball, bouncing among a playground full of childish participants, who view me merely as a tool of their game.

It is up to me to acquaint myself with the things in life that enrich the possibility for optimism, without turning me into a silly bird flying in every direction, chasing sunbeams.

I need to believe without ignoring my reality. How do you do that?

I must become aware of good hues, while familiarizing myself with darker tints. If I mingle the two, I can become pragmatic AND pursue my portion of the solution instead of rallying to the rear of the naysayers:

  • I will acquaint myself with the beauty of a crooning sparrow. These creatures beckon the beginning of a new day.
  • I will acquaint myself with the homeless people in my community, who would revel in receiving my dollar bill instead of me eating unnecessary calories from the convenience store treat.
  • I will acquaint myself with music of all types instead of taking sides on tunes and ridiculing those choices that are not found on my I-pod.
  • I will acquaint myself with traditions that have been the salvation of many a soul, instead of finding fault with the numerous silly attempts they often make to share their testimony.
  • I will acquaint myself with the beauty and power of both political parties and astound the world around me by pointing out the better moments of each.
  • I will acquaint myself with the God I discover in nature instead of somehow or another bowing down to nature AS God.
  • I will acquaint myself with the gentleness of touching a human hand instead of pawing at life, grabbing on for satisfaction.

I will become aware. I will familiarize myself with truth.

Yes, I will acquaint myself with what makes me free.

I will acquaint myself with you–without asking you to become me.