Clamber: (v) to climb, move, or get in or out of something in an awkward and laborious way, typically using both hands and feet

It’s difficult to know whether we are judged by what we’re able to achieve, or how well we overcame the obstacles that attempt to forbid

Yes, you could discuss that one for hours.

It reminds me of the time I took my children to an amusement park. I was still a very young man, but very fat. This created an immediate perplexity. Because I was young, I envisioned things I could do, often not taking into consideration the extra baggage I was bringing along.

Another example:

We went out on a boat trip. They had a little, thin gangplank to get on the boat, which I was grateful to have negotiated. So I assumed that when we returned there would be some sort of similar passageway from the front of the boat onto the dock again.

There wasn’t.

They eased the boat toward the landing, leaving a gap of about three feet between the boat and the safety of the dock. Well, other folks gave it a little bit of a running start, leaped into the air and came down safely onto the pier.

I kept inching my way behind people, letting them go first. I guess I was hoping that I would have a few minutes at the end, to figure out what to do, but failed to realize that all the people stayed on the dock and were going to watch my grand leap.

I tried to make that running start, to clamber with my entire obese body, legs and arms in the air, and land safely.

Just when I got to the end of the boat, my brain said, “Are you crazy?”

An immediate order was given at Mind Central: STOP!!

I nearly tumbled into the water but was able to step back. Then I tried to reach one leg across, and was able to get my foot onto the surface, but I was spread too far to get any pressure on the leg to push me over.

By this time I had secured an audience.

People began to make suggestions. My children were trying to hide and my wife was already being comforted by strangers.

At this point, I decided it was impossible. The ordeal went for ten minutes. The combination of fear, practicality and my limitations was turning me into a sea-lovin’ man.

Finally the captain took a rope and hooked it around some sort of turret and pulled the whole boat a bit closer–with just his sheer brute force. This received applause from those standing by. Even more humiliation.

I still was not able to find a “clambering” approach to leaving the boat. So three guys reached down, grabbed me under my arms and on the count of three, hoisted me up on the dock.

I attempted to land with some authority, stomping my feet a couple of times so the people around me would be aware that I had muscular ability, then quickly grabbed my family and disappeared into the crowd, heading for the refreshment stand.

After all, I was hungry from all the exertion.

Donate Button





Chocolate: (n) a food preparation made from roasted and ground cacao seeds, typically sweetened.

Obesity is a bitch, because it bitches at you because you’re obese.

It forces you to think about food more than you need to, which can eventually cause you to rebel about being confined.

After all, I’ve never seen a prisoner who’s grateful for being locked up because it made him eat more vegetables.

Likewise, even though being fat does require some disciplinary action, removing the finer parts of life–for instance, chocolate– is what the constitution may have meant by “cruel and unusual punishment.”

So sometimes the prisoner locked within the fatty walls must break out and be free.

Matter of fact, it happened to me last night.

I wanted some chocolate.

Realizing that a Milky Way candy bar is in the hundreds of calories, and even a pack of M & M’s has way too much sugar, I did discover a tiny piece of delight called the Candy Kiss, which ended up being just 22 calories and 2.6 grams of sugar.

Now obviously, one Candy Kiss is not enough, especially if you’ve been locked up in solitary for a long period of time, devoid of the pleasure. But sometimes you can convince yourself to hold it to three.

Three Candy Kisses, bitten in half, creating six bites of chocolate, is a mind-boggling, soul-altering spiritual revival, with a good shout of “Hallelujah” followed by a creamy “A-men.”

Sometimes nothing will replace chocolate.

I certainly enjoy my asparagus, but I cannot truthfully say that it is related, coordinated, conjoined or entwined with the marvelous miracle of chocolate.



Donate Button



Caddie: (n) a person who carries a golfer’s clubs

Mike was always trying to figure out ways to make money. He was a fifteen-year-old entrepreneur before anybody was prepared to spell or
pronounce the word.

He liked me.

Now, Mike weighed about 122 pounds. I also weighed 122 pounds–but stored 150 more as a backup. So Mike had a lot of stamina. I just had a lot.

Mike had the brilliant idea of going to the new golf course just outside our town and offering his service as a caddie to our limited supply of financially successful people. He did it for two or three weekends, and came back with… cash.

At fifteen years of age, I so infrequently saw money that it seemed almost mystical and certainly magical.

Mike convinced me that I should take my 270-plus pounds and go out with him the next weekend to caddie at the golf center. He explained that it was nothing more than going on a long walk. (I should have realized at that point that it had been many years since I had been on a long walk. My personal preference was a long drive.)

But I agreed and arrived at the gold course at 8:00 A. M. sharp to carry the bags for Mr. Fundergetz. Now, I’m sure that’s not his real name, but he said it with a German accent so quickly that the best I could ascertain was “Fundergetz.” Most of the morning I opted to call him “sir.”

I had not realized that golf courses were measured in yards–and this was before anyone had thought about using a golf cart. By the time I reached the third hole, carrying the bags and trying to keep up with Fundergetz, I was panting, sweating down the insides of my legs and so flushed in the face that he became concerned for me and asked me to sit down while he ran and got some ice for my forehead.

After a few moments of recuperation, I said, “I’m fine now, and it won’t be too much longer, right?”

At this point, Fundergetz explained to me that it was an eighteen-hole golf course and we were only one-sixth of the way through.

Noting the fear on my face, my trembling brow and a tear coming to the corner of my eye, he showed mercy on me, handed me two dollars and asked if I could make it back to the clubhouse on my own.

I was so humiliated.

Mike was so disappointed.

I was completely emasculated by the whole experience.

So when I arrived back at the clubhouse to complete my restoration, I got two hot dogs, a coke and a Baby Ruth candy bar.

It is amazing how good they made me feel.

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















Bulimia: (n) an eating disorder

Bulimia just makes me sick to my stomach.

I’m sorry. I know it’s not funny. It’s a serious eating disorder.

But sometimes I wish they would take these serious things and not tempt meDictionary B with humorous images.

Are there positive things about bulimia?

  • You can find a second use for your toothbrush. (I know–once again inappropriate.)
  • It conjures a new definition for take-out food.
  • But mostly, it is a by-product of an obsession we have with being slim.

No one is going to tell you the truth about body weight. Why? Because in doing so, billions of dollars could be lost in commerce for remedies.

How much of your body weight and my body weight is conditioned, pre-determined and affected by genetics?

I saw a lady the other day in the store who was so thin that I was not sure there was a leg inside her skin-tight jeans. But then I saw her glance over at me, with my abundance of human flesh, and produce a sneer.

What have we done to ourselves?

Certainly obesity causes a myriad of health situations. But anorexia, bulimia and trying to live on less nutrition than necessary to sustain our vital organs is equally as dangerous.

I have found that solutions are achieved in a three-step process:

  1. Find the real truth
  2. Stop fighting the real truth
  3. Develop a plan based on the real truth

Until we do this on the subject of weight loss, we will have people literally tearing their insides out to be thin.


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





Bronze: (v) to make a person or part of the body suntanned.

I’ve often missed out on conventional wisdom because I could not afford to go to the convention.

So I frequently found myself going against the common thread of understanding and sewing up my own solutions.Dictionary B

On one such occasion, I scheduled our music group to perform in Miami, Florida, in the month of July.

Nobody does that.

Miami becomes a glowing hot rock, to be avoided by any living creature which does not wish to swelter. But our group wasn’t that popular–we were certainly never going to be able to be in Miami in January.

So we went in July.

It was very reasonably priced (since nobody was there) and really no hotter than the rest of the country, which was also experiencing summer.

But my achievement during those two weeks was something I had never experienced before and haven’t since. For you see, I worked up the courage to put on a pair of shorts, go shirtless, and walk around the beach until my skin turned bronze.

God, I loved it.

At night, I stood in front of the mirror and stared at my brown hide, realizing that I had never before enjoyed my body–because it was the color of pewter.

I was bronzed.

I wasn’t intimidated to step along the sidewalks near the ocean in my cutoff blue jeans and just act like I was one of the locals.

In the midst of those two weeks, a friend of mine debuted her new book and invited me to come to Nashville, Tennessee, for the signing. When I arrived I was the talk of the town.

“Where’d you get that tan?”

“Must be nice to lay on the beach all day long…”

Never in my life had I felt physically valuable to the world around me.

  • Spiritually–yes.
  • Emotionally–certainly.
  • Creatively–I hope so.

But for the first time, my “bronze” covered up some of my obesity, puffiness and, shall we say, “whitey-white-white.”

Now, I know you’re not supposed to get too much sun. I know there’s a danger of cancer.

But I am so grateful that on at least one occasion in my life, I got to walk around, for a little while… as a bronze Greek god.

Donate Button

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




Bend: (v) to shape or force something straight into a curve

Dictionary B

I cannot tell you how many nibbles I have in my ass from all the things I’ve taken for granted, which have now come back to bite me.

I think it’s probably the greatest lesson I’ve learned–since everything in life is basically temporary, don’t allow yourself to become permanently smug.

When I was much younger, I was very athletic–not in the conventional sense of playing for organized teams, but I was pretty proficient at most games.

This was especially significant since all of my life, I have struggled with obesity. So I always heard the phrase, “You really move good for a big man.”

This caused me to puff up my chest, believing that my present prowess, provided by my youth, would continue on into my later years.

I never stopped to thank God for the parts of me that bend, because I assumed they would continue their vigil.

They didn’t.

First my ankles bothered me, then my knees, and I will stop there because I don’t want to encourage further sympathy from body parts which have not yet given up.

I am in awe of bending knees. What a magnificent joint.

So since I have not retained the ability to bend all of my human physical parts with as much efficiency as I once did, I have decided to compensate by bending my will and mercy in directions that establish … my greater flexibility.

Donate Button

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



Belly: (n) the front part of the human trunk below the ribs, containing the stomach and bowels.

Dictionary B

I’ve always tried to stay optimistic because if I become downcast, I see my belly, which only adds to the depression.

I don’t know whether you’re supposed to see your belly when you look down. Some people might have a view of other anatomical parts.

But not me.

Since I was a lad of seven, my belly has preceded me into affairs. It pushes itself to the forefront, trying to establish dominance and certainly, advertise other potential character flaws.

I have tried to lose my belly–but apparently there is some sort of snitch in my brain which always informs this large protrusion of my intentions.

The belly protects itself.

If I try to starve it out, it prepares for the siege.

It actually seems to be proud of its acreage. I, on the other hand, keep trying to find pants to cover it up.

I am not alone in this situation. Occasionally, when I stop to look at other people, I see that they, too, have accumulated quite an impressive forerunner to their forthcoming.

In other words, they have big bellies.

I have read that in history, possessing such a large amount of flesh was once considered to be a symbol of prosperity. That was a time when starvation was common, and obesity was evidence that you could put food on your table.

As I write this today, I am not sure that my belly will ever leave.

It is a damn sentimental creature of habit.

Donate Button

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