Commentator

Commentator: (n) a person who delivers a live commentary on an event

His name was Walter.

People under the age of forty probably don’t even remember who he was.

His last name was Cronkite. He was a commentator. At one time, he was voted “the most respected man in America.”

In this age of controversy about the news media, Walter stands out as historically unique. Case in point:

I have no idea if he wore ladies underwear.

I have no private information on whether he ever sexually harassed his office staff.

I do not know if he was secretly gay.

These are things that seem to be important to us nowadays. We not only want people to do their job, but we want them to do it to our standard of morality.

But what set Walter Cronkite apart from the rest of the commentators of his day–and certainly of our season–is that he really believed what he was doing was valuable.

It was so important to him that he always delivered the news with sincerity, neutrality, gravitas and yet in a reassuring way, letting the American people know that the sky was not falling–there would be another day, and a good chance it would be better.

Maybe it was the bit of “gruff” in his voice, which hinted at crankiness, or the bristle of mustache, perhaps outdated–but aging uncles and grandfathers never seem to care.

Or maybe it was the fact that when the President of the United States was shot in Dallas, Walter, like us, was mortified–and found himself breaking into tears.

There are three things Walter knew about humanity:

  1. When you run across goodness, proclaim it. It’s not always easy to be human and good.
  2. Don’t expect humans to be good in every arena, but make sure they respect the holy ground of their calling.
  3. And Walter knew that as a human being, he needed to make sure he kept his ears tuned to the mission of his heart, and far away from the gossiping rabble.

Walter Cronkite was a commentator.

But history has shown his mercy, his faithfulness and exactly how uncommon he was.

 

Donate Button

Subscribe to Jonathan’s Weekly Podcast

Good News and Better News

 

Advertisements

Cherub

Cherub: (n) a beautiful or innocent-looking child.

It takes a lot for me to become motivated to try to lose weight.

It’s similar to convincing an ant-eater that ant consumption is bad for its health. After all, you are named “ant-eater.” To suddenly stop eating ants not only removes your diet, but robs you of your identity.

I.e., if I am not a fat man, who am I?

If I’m not the guy talking about calories while lamenting my metabolism, how would I be able to find myself in a crowded mall?

My identity is wrapped up in my weaknesses just as much as my virtues. I don’t know why we take so much time to lie, cheat and cover up our frailties, when the
y are obviously going to pop up and announce their presence.

But every once in a while, I do become motivated to try to carve away some of the fat from my body. It usually takes a shock. One such occasion happened when a gentleman from a newspaper, reviewing my show and describing my face, wrote: “He is a chubby fellow with cherub-like features.”

I was appalled.

There is no man born on this Earth who wants to be a chubby cherub. Matter of fact, if you told a woman that her blind date was “chubby and cherub-like” she just might call in sick.

I became obsessed.

I went to my bathroom mirror and stood there for at least fifteen minutes, peering at my cheeks–my second chin which was thinking about adding on an addition–and eventually became convinced that I indeed was a cherub. Although that supposedly has angelic proportions, it also makes you look too child-like and too plump.

I immediately started a diet, which didn’t last long because I was motivated for all the wrong reasons.

So over the years I have tried to grow a beard, which was as successful as any other cherub, and I’ve sported a mustache–a goatee which I occasionally have to pencil in because it’s just not dark enough.

This whole story would be very pathetic except for the fact that deep in my heart, I really don’t care.

My confidence is not based on my appearance, but rather, the confidence my appearance may proffer to others.

 

 

Donate Button

Beard

Beard: (n) a growth of hair on the chin and lower cheeks of a man’s face.Dictionary B

Call it an oversimplification, but I believe the three stages in the life of a man can be summed up as follows:

  1. Birth
  2. Arrogance
  3. Disproven.

The key to success in human life, wearing a male body, is to arrive at “disproven” with a sense of humor instead of disappointment.

So it was well after my birth, in my season of arrogance, that I decided I wanted to grow a beard. For the life of me I cannot remember what stimulated this notion, but understanding my mindset in that season, it had something to do with being sexy. Because being sexy in the arrogant period of macho life is Number 1 on the Top 5 of important goals.

Of course, you know the problem.

Each one of us is issued a body filled with genetic mishaps, and within that body are limitations. As it turned out, one of mine was the ability to grow a decent beard.

I should have suspected this since I don’t really need to shave every day and only do so to keep up with the “Bill Joneses.”

So since I don’t need to shave all the time, it’s highly unlikely that my face is going to suddenly sprout a bush.

And it didn’t.

It grew in various portions of acreage, leaving other areas deserted.

I was unable to grow any hair on my cheeks, so my beard made me look like I was trying to become a Jew instead of a gigolo.

I persisted.

I used eyebrow pencil to fill it in for a long time, before finally one day I looked in the mirror and pitied my poor efforts.

As it turns out, I can grow a mustache and a soul patch.

I call it a beard. This shall satisfy my need for arrogance as I continue on in my understanding of being disproven.

 

Donate Button

Thank you for enjoying Words from Dic(tionary) —  J.R. Practix

 

 

Bandana

Bandana: (n) a large handkerchief, typically having a colorful pattern, worn tied around the head or neck.Dictionary B

Knowing your limitations is important…and annoying.

Importantly annoying. To a certain degree, that summarizes adult life.

When I was a much younger man, I became quite enamored with the hippie philosophy–but more or less the attire rather than the ideals.

Now, let me make it clear that I am a chubby fellow. (Chubby is the generous word I use today for “fat.”)

But I did love the flowered shirts and the bandanas which were often worn on the head, to look cool and maybe have some practical purpose which certainly escaped my perception.

So since they did not make these flowered shirts in my size, I had a girlfriend make one for me. Unfortunately, the material I chose was literally covered with flowers, and she made it a little too big and irregular around the collar, so it kind of draped me at the chest.

But I slid on a bandana and proudly donned my new shirt and went out into society to establish my uniqueness. Much to my chagrin, the first four people who saw me referred to me as “ma’am.”

You see, when you’re chubby and wear a blousy flowered shirt, it does appear to be a blouse. Add a bandana and you look a little like you’re heading off into the field to pick lettuce.

So I was greatly offended, but rather than abandoning my clothing choice, I decided to grow a mustache to enhance my masculine image. Unfortunately, most people just thought the circus had come to town and they had caught the Bearded Lady on “Shave Day.”

It was embarrassing.

It made me defensive.

So my life as a hippie was very brief, and eventually I found it safer to reject the bandana in favor of a baseball cap.

To my delight, almost immediatelyI was once again viewed as a dude.

 

Donate Button

Thank you for enjoying Words from Dic(tionary) —  J.R. Practix

*******************

NEW BOOK RELEASE BY JONATHAN RICHARD CRING

WITHIN

A meeting place for folks who know they’re human

 $3.99 plus $2.00 S&H

$3.99 plus $2.00 Shipping & Handling

$3.99 plus $2.00 Shipping & Handling

Buy Now Button