Clinic

Clinic: (n) a hospital department where outpatients are given medical treatment

Old Marion Webster always tends to leave out a detail or two in presenting definitions.

Clinics are not only places where people go to get medical assistance, but often find themselves frequenting due to poverty.

I’ve been to a clinic. It wasn’t because I doing research for one of my essays. No–I was busted.

Broke. Without bucks. Dollarless.

I found the experience to be humiliating–not because I thought I was better than all the other clientele. It was humiliating by design.

All the furniture was old, scarred, some pieces broken. The magazines were dated at least four years earlier, and had articles which had already proven to be incorrect. The candy machine was empty except for peanuts and Cheese-it crackers. The Coke machine was out of order and the coffee maker had a crack in it, so they could only make one cup at a time.

The nurses were volunteers who attempted to be cheery, but still conveyed a sense of yearning to get over their stint quickly and return to their normal lives.

The people around me were sick–some very sick. It made them look and act dreary.

I sat there and thought to myself, how easy it would be for people of substance and finance to just donate new magazines.

How about that church down the road which recently bought new furniture for their parlor–giving that old plush couch and chairs to this clinic so people would feel just a bit more comfortable as they sat for hours, waiting for a three-minute visit?

Would it kill the vendors to make sure that the candy machine was adequately stocked, and price it just a bit more reasonably for those who have to search longer for quarters?

How about giving them a new coffee pot, or taking up a donation to make the Cokes reappear?

I wasn’t angry over the indifference–just perplexed by the ignorance.

Now that prosperity has crept my way, I have a little extra money every once in a while that might seem like a gold mine for a clinic.

Maybe just buying flowers for the attendants to wear every day. Or if you worry that the patients might be allergic, purchase more colorful scrubs.

For some reason or another, rich people do not feel it’s enough to insult the less fortunate with mere poverty. They want to make sure the experience leaves a bitter taste in their mouths.

 

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By

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By: (prep) identifying the agent performing an action.

If you want success to radiate around your efforts, you have to discover what makes things work best.

Finding out by what means peace of mind and joy are enacted is probably the most important pearl we can recover.

This happened to me the day I accepted the idea that faith works by love.

A loveless faith is just a braggart spirit–a person filled with presumption who decides to make bold statements, hoping that eventually he or she will luck into achieving them.

By the same token, love that does not prompt us to expand our faith becomes cloistered and sappy.

What are some other possibilities? What additional “teams” can be brought together for righteousness?

Politics works by truth. Wow.

Marriage works by communication. Certainly.

Good health works by good eating. Not medication.

Prosperity works by labor. (After all, you even have to buy a lottery ticket.)

And human appeal works by good cheer. Everyone loves the funny guy or gal.

Finding out by what means things are achieved is the actual definition of genius.

 

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Bourgeoisie

Bourgeoisie: (n) the middle class, typically with reference to its perceived materialistic values

It was called a skeleton key.Dictionary B

Certain locks were made to be universal, and opened by a single common key.

It was so simple. You just put the skeleton key in the lock and it opened up the door.

You didn’t have to have key cards or specially-ground units specifically designed to open particular doors. Of course, it fell by the wayside because it didn’t provide much in the way of privacy.

But as we consider the future of our country, with a desire to honor the needs of its people, let us realize that leading with finance or the ownership of things may be a good campaign approach, but it does not do very much to further our joining together as a nation.

Yes, we need a middle class. That middle class should have solvency. But that solvency should be used to expand the vision of those families to look for reasons to help others.

As it pertains to the bourgeoisie, you cannot simply give money to people and think it will miraculously turn into mercy.

It doesn’t.

Therefore–as in the case of the skeleton key–the most important thing we can do is teach people to value each other so when they do go into the marketplace and achieve success, or even prosperity, they will open their hearts to use their profits to profit others.

 

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Boulevard

Boulevard: (n) a wide street in a town or city

Los Angeles, California.Dictionary B

I was thirty years old before I got there. I tried many times. My failed attempts made it seem even more charming.

I had an old beat-up van, so when I drove to Hollywood to see the sights, it was really quite comical to spot my vehicle in the midst of such sunshine and splendor–especially when we pulled into the parking lot across from the Chinese Theater where they have all the footprints of the stars, and my brood of children poured out of the side doors to explore. I’m sure the natives thought they were being invaded by the “Bluegrass Brigade.”

Los Angeles is full of boulevards and reminders of its opulence and place in American folklore.

When my feet finally got tired and I went back to the van before the rest of the kin, I was studying a map to the stars’ homes. As I read, I considered that most of these supernovas were dead.

I looked around at the wealth and prosperity and realized that these individuals, who were so revered from the silver screen, were once living, breathing human beings, walking the streets, and now seemed to haunt the region.

It gave me a chill down my spine.

Life is short.

Find your boulevard.

Travel well.

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Borrow

Borrow: (v) to take and use something that belongs to someone else with the intention of returning it.

I have an inkling that determining whether people are getting older can be evaluated by judging the shows they watch on television.Dictionary B

For instance, when I was younger I would never have watched “Wheel of Fortune.” And even though I would not call myself an avid viewer now, it is occasionally on in the background while I do other things.

Likewise, I would have made fun of myself for watching the judge shows like “People’s Court.”

I bring this up because on these court TV shows, each case finishes up with an interview in the outside hall, where the announcer asks the litigants what they learned from the experience. Universally, the eternal truth that falls from their lips is, “Don’t trust anybody.”

Benjamin Franklin intoned, in his pseudo-intellectual way, “Neither a lender nor a borrower be.”

It is a wonderful philosophy–if you are never in need.

But since my life has been bespeckled with all varieties of poverty and prosperity, I can appreciate the fact that every once in a while … you are one cup of milk and one bowl of cereal short of breakfast.

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Bony

Bony (adj) of or like bone.

I was born in the wrong century.Dictionary B

I should have been born during the Renaissance, when I could have been a renegade artist whose obesity would have been considered a sign of prosperity instead of weakness.

Yes, in the good old days, when people were struggling to get food, having a paunchy middle caused those around you to be envious of your luxurious calorie intake.

Nowadays, the human race actually prefers a controlled anorexia–even though I do not know what that would be, since the condition means that someone has lost control of their body.

We like people just short of bony–but also far away from plump. (By the way, we have removed the word “pleasingly.”)

I will admit that being overweight is a health hazard. I am not suggesting that people should literally “eat their heart out.” But we must also realize that “skin and bones” leaves the human body deprived of the nutrients to sustain well-being.

What’s the answer?

Gosh, I don’t know.

I guess we do the best we can with what we have, hoping to keep just enough flesh that no one has “a bone to pick with us.”

 

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Bonsai

Bonsai: (n) an ornamental tree or shrub grown in a pot

Once upon a time, in a kingdom where bank accounts were not depleted, I had some extra money burning a hole deep in my right pocket of selfishness.Dictionary B

It was scary.

I went over the bills three or four times just to make sure I hadn’t missed something, but at the end of my calculation, I discovered that I was temporarily endowed with abundance.

I wanted to do something lavishly weird–and not just lavish, like buying several cans of whipped cream, but weird. Something that would give others pause, but then they would feel foolish for questioning the wealthy fellow and his eccentric choices.

I hunted, I searched and I found a gentleman who sold bonsai trees.

I knew nothing about them. But I felt like owning one was a symbol of prosperity. So I bought two. Double the potency.

The fellow tried to explain to me the care of these plants and I listened with the attention span of a three-year-old who has to pee but also wants to ride the roller coaster.

When I got home with my bonsai trees, I realized that I had completely forgotten everything he said, and had left the literature behind, trusting my memory.

Then came that great, ridiculous American assertion: how hard can it be?

  • So I watered them
  • I trimmed their little branches (having remembered this being part of the process)
  • And every day when I returned, they looked a little worse

It was like watching your Grandma die of old age. I was concerned but totally helpless.

Then inexplicably, they developed tiny insects which started eating away at the bark.

It took about five weeks, while I heroically tried to give CPR to these dying new friends, but eventually they turned brown–and for some reason, started to stink.

I threw them both into a big garbage bag, took them out to the curb and said good-bye.

I can’t swear to it, but I thought I heard one of them, from within the bag, gasp, “Murderer.”

 

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