Concordance

Concordance: (n) an alphabetical list of the words in a text

There was a season in my life’s journey when I wanted to be a “Reverend.” Not just a minister or preacher, but an actual, full-fledged cleric.

I liked the sound of it. “Reverend.”

At that time, my immature, jealous spirit was anxious to be recognized for doing nothing while having a title. To accentuate this need and punctuate its funny wisdom on words that begin with a C
possibility, I bought myself the “Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance.”

I immediately realized why it had the name “Strong” and “Exhaustive.” To just carry the thing required you to be built like an ox.

I located some churches to pontificate spiritual lessons (in other words, preach sermons) so I opened up my Exhaustive Concordance and found words I wanted to share about, and discovered where they were peppered and placed all over the Bible, and then spent all my time trying to pull together these abstract texts–which were thousands of years apart–and create a cohesive message.

It was “inspiration by committee”–the inspiration being anything anybody could get out of my mish-mash and the committee being a host of ancient Bedouin writers who happened to mention my favored word in some favored way.

It is a horrible way to share truth, persisting to this day.

As I lost my interest in the word “Reverend,” and most of my need to evangelize through my sermonizing, I soon discovered that I no longer needed a concordance.

I just needed to share my life–good and bad–and in so doing, become much more enlightening.

And much less exhaustive.

 

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Bastion

Bastion (n) an institution, place, or person strongly defending or upholding particular principlesDictionary B

I have been invited, from time to time, to pontificate on the issue of parenting.

I suppose I receive the requests because people have looked at my children and deemed them to be acceptable human citizens.

I never accept these opportunities.

Why? Because I have no idea how to parent.

Any good parent will tell you that somehow or another, they lucked their way into ending up with decent children. It could have easily gone the other way.

Children are not born bad, but one bout with narcotics can make them look like they are hell’s spawn.

So truthfully, there is really only one bastion for the human spirit. Without this particular quality, everything we do is overwrought, inconsistent, and foolish.

The only hope for the human race is humility.

I don’t care if it’s popular or not; I do not check the polls to find out if it’s favored by the masses.

Whenever I promise to do anything in my life, I always follow it with a disclaimer.

Sometimes I say the old-fashioned, “God willing.”

On other occasions, I warn people that the success of what I allege is dependent on my limited ability.

But human beings, without the bastion of humility, are similar to dogs … who think they own the master’s bed. 

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Adjourn

Words from Dic(tionary)

dictionary with letter A

Adjourn: (v.) to break off a meeting, legal case or game with the intention of resuming it later. e.g. the meeting was adjourned until December 4th.

The key to organization, which by the way, is the breath of successful life, is to get your ducks in a row without making everybody around you go “quackers.”

In other words, be efficient without being a jerk.

This is my problem with Parliamentary procedure. For when I think of the word “adjourn,” I recall all the meetings I have attended, which have basically consisted of children trying to act grown-up by following some archaic procedure of rules and regulations which end up being the conversation of the room instead of working on the topics themselves.

Quite bluntly, in that atmosphere, the person who seconds the motion and whether they have seconded a motion before instead of waiting in line, or whether the vote was taken before discussion, becomes much more important to the committee than whether they pass resolutions.

Thus, Congress.

The thing that upsets me about our form of government is that we’re much more concerned about maintaining the traditions of our system, tipping our hats to old-fashioned methods, than we are about whether progress is being made and we’re actually addressing situations before they slap us in the face.

I usually don’t pontificate on this issue because I don’t have an alternative.

I do understand if we don’t have SOME sort of order while considering options in a meeting place, that chaos can quickly become the ruler of the day. But I am not convinced that following the rules of Parliament (which by the way, isn’t even American) has anything to do with the general welfare or the common good.

What should come out of a meeting?

  1. All ideas expressed within a time limit.
  2. Those who are uncertain of facts should be able to question them.
  3. A vote–up or down.

That’s it. The quickest, easiest, friendliest and most human way to achieve that should be pursued with great passion.

I’m just not sure that all of the rules and regulations that we follow like a herd of sheep is doing anything but fleecing us of possibility.

So for me, I’d like to adjourn Parliamentary procedure.

Can I get a second on that?

Acoustic

Words from Dic(tionary)

by J. R. Practix

dictionary with letter A

Acoustic: (adj.) of music or musical instruments not having electrical amplification: e.g. acoustic guitar

  • It has to be fun.
  • It has to be humble.
  • And it has to be willing to learn.

Those are the three ingredients I think are necessary to make any adventure workable, enjoyable and realistic. Whenever any group of people takes themselves so seriously that they believe they’ve arrived at the apex of all understanding or the pinnacle of all talent, they are obnoxious and in some ways, dangerous.

This is true of musicians.

Music, which was meant to be a heartfelt explosion of joy, intimacy and emotion, has become, God forbid, a craft. And as craftsmen, we sit around and discuss the subtleties of the use of particular implementations which hold our delicate treasures together.

Thus the word acoustic.

So the rock band, which was once willing to admit “they only knew four chords and that’s why their music sounded the way it did,” pretentiously now does a documentary film, sharing their music acoustically instead of using electronic assistance. We’re supposed to stand back in awe of these cave men, who have discovered that there is some little world outside their enclosure, and mull over their genius simply because … “they’ve unplugged.”

I love music.

  • Music was God’s way of saying life should be tuneful.
  • Music was God’s apology for conversation.
  • And music is our way of expressing ourselves without insisting that the whole room listen to us pontificate.

So we should HUMBLY pursue it, realizing our limitations and ceasing to make excuses for our frequent bobbles.

But instead, we proclaim some people who compose to be “masters,” and everyone else mere “minstrels.”

So rather than enjoying the fact that other people have picked up our instrument and exceeded our efforts, we instead attempt to tear them down because they are not purists and don’t honor the traditions of syncopation or structure.

YUK.

I don’t care if you rock, jazz, square dance, hillbilly, rap or insist on Mozart. Be humble about it and have some fun. You’re not a better musician because you play an acoustic guitar instead of an electric one. It’s not a better auditorium because it’s acoustically adjusted to the high A-sharp on the first violin.

It’s supposed to be joyful. “A joyful noise”–remember that? So unless you plan on giggling and dancing, don’t come my way.

Acoustic set.

Somebody needs to take off the rubber nose and the big floppy shoes.

Abolish

by J. R. Practix

dictionary with letter A

Abolish:   v. to formally put an end to a system, practice or institution

That’s a strong word. Matter of fact, as I sat down and thought about it, the only “abolish” I ever heard of was slavery.

  • I personally would like to abolish fat grams.
  • I would like to abolish calories.
  • I would like to abolish ignorance that tries to pass itself off as comedy.
  • I would like to abolish about seventy-eight pounds off my body.
  • I would like to abolish some of the decisions made by my children in the name of free choice.
  • I would like to abolish some of the choices made by me when I was childish, in the pursuit of some hippie philosophy.
  • I would like to abolish the parliamentary procedure which seeps into our grown-up world and makes us feel like we’re really adult but ends up just halting progress.
  • I would like to abolish political parties so that individual candidates could run, and since we didn’t already know the talking points, we would have to listen to what they had to say.

But none of those are as strong as abolishing slavery was.

How about this one?

I would like to abolish all the foolhardy people who are talking about legalizing mind-altering drugs simply based on economic convenience, with no aforethought about what might cause some young person to become involved with these deadly chemicals, lending themselves to other even more deadly chemicals.

I guess there are a lot of things I’d like to abolish. But the problem with “abolish” is that you find out that merely stating your case is not enough, and as in the American Civil War, you end up squaring off and fighting to the death over the issue.

I’m not sure what I’m willing to die for. Certainly not abolishing fat grams (although the little boogers probably have a plan for MY demise).

Abolish is a strong word. I guess instead of abolish, I would just like to hear some intelligent dialogue on many of the issues of our day instead of hearing pundits portray their platform as they pontificate their principle.

Yes, I would like to hear an intelligent conversation about abortion, capital punishment, civil rights, global warming and nuclear proliferation, without being handed a pamphlet listing the ten reasons why the other side is anti-American.

It was a good thing to abolish slavery.

Who knows? Maybe it would be a good thing to abolish calories. But if you stand up to abolish something, you’d better be ready to fight.

That’s scary crap.