Crackpot

Crackpot: (n) a person who is eccentric, unrealistic, or fanatical.

 So what is a crackpot?

It may not be a word we use much nowadays. We favor asshole. But asshole has too broad a beam to it (pardon the expression).

A crackpot is something specific. A crackpot is a person who may start out well-intentioned but ends up ridiculous because he or she always makes the same mistake.

Crackpots leave out a step.funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

For instance, it’s easy to find crackpots in religion. Many start out with a common theme: God created us. It’s a good beginning. But then they jump ahead to crazy notions:

God only loves us.

God wants us only concerned with worship.

God wants us to preach vigorously against sin.

God wants us to keep heaven on our mind.

God wants us to fight for Him.

They leave out the middle steps which justify our faith. For instance:

God created us all—and then here comes life.

You see? There’s a lot of living before we get about the business of dying. There’s a lot of living that needs to be done in peace and joy before we stand face-to-face in an afterlife of eternal glow.

The same thing is true in politics:

Our country needs to have its problems solved, says the politician. Well, it would be difficult to disagree with that. What makes these politicians crackpots is that they skip plans, responsibilities, taxes and timelines—and they jump straight ahead to attack their political enemies, blame other countries or try to load down great legislation with too many programs—and this brings everything to a screeching halt.

In business: “We are out to make a good product…” Then the crackpots of industry leap ahead to this statement: “…and more importantly, make a huge profit.”

Somewhere between the product and the profit there needs to be a happy consumer, a well-cared-for work force and balanced books.

A crackpot is someone who starts out with a good idea and skips all the work it takes to achieve solvency, assuming that the reward should be enjoyed right here and right now. 

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Cower

Cower: (v) to crouch as in fear or shame.

Sometimes a story is just a story.

It is told to make a point, hoping that the lesson can be learned more easily with the introduction of characters, props and surroundings.funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

When we begin to believe that every story is a commandment or that every tale placed in a holy book is intended to be the immutable word of God, we not only threaten the world around us with our piety, but we drastically miss the point.

It doesn’t take long to discover this if you ever read the Good Book.

The story of Adam and Eve is not placed in the pages to warn of the danger of eating too much fruit or to suggest that blindly following the commandments of the Almighty is the best way to achieve a good human life.

The purpose of the story is to let us know what we should do when we inevitably fail. For let me tell you, there are only two pieces of ignorance on the Earth:

1. “I never make mistakes.”

2. “I always make mistakes and am not worthy.”

Both of these paths make you dangerous to the people around you and cripple you in your pursuit of living an abundant life.

The story says that Adam and Eve were not supposed to eat some piece of fruit in the Garden. Truthfully, I do not know what in the hell that means, for heaven’s sakes.

Nor do you. You can feel free to speculate on what the fruit might have been, the danger it offered, or parallel it with some action in our world today. But certainly the Creator who tinkered with our brain to form a psyche He called human was fully cognizant that saying “no” to such beings as us was an invitation to rebellion.

People do not like to be told not to do something.

“Thou shalt not” is the best way to set in motion “thou wilt.”

So the story of Eden is not about learning discipline, but rather, learning what to do when personal discipline breaks down.

Having eaten the goddamn fruit, Adam and Eve plotted, becoming liars, deceivers, cover-up artists and hiders.

They cowered.

Feeling that God was more interested in His rules and regulations than He was in them, they ran away in fear of His judgment.

They completely misunderstood.

Had they walked out together, naked as jaybirds, with their half-eaten apple in hand and presented it to God with a repentant heart, we might still be living in Paradise.

God was not trying to build a Paradise that was perfect, but rather, one where imperfection could be revealed without fear.

If your situation, your religion, your politics, your family, your spouse, your school or any other mortal man or woman causes you to cower, it can’t possibly be borne of goodness.

We were not meant to cower, just as we are not meant to be sin-free.

We were meant to boldly live, to boldly fail and to boldly repent.

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Couth

Couth: (adj) showing or having good manners or sophistication

 I never get a chance to do anything couth because I’m too busy trying to correct my uncouth behavior.

I also think that we could make great advancements in our society and also in the human race simply by agreeing with each other about what truly is couth—and therefore being able to identify the patterns of action that would be uncouth.funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

What would be the top five attributes of being couth with people of every culture, from every nation, every religion and every predilection?

1. Learn how to listen by making eye contact and at least imitating interest.

2. Lead with kindness, even if you expect it to be rejected.

3. Smile more, even when you’re not taking selfies.

4. Contribute your talent where it will help—not where you wish it will help.

5. Be grateful.

I offer these five to you today as the Couth of Truth.

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Courier

Courier: (n) a messenger who transports packages and documents

After many years of receiving mail, packages and having messages transferred all over the world, I can probably count on two hands the number of times that something went afoul.

Stop for a second and think about that.funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

Especially in this age of free shipping and orders being delivered to your door, seemingly night and day, how do these companies maintain such a meticulous record of efficiency?

I know it’s popular to attack institutions, religion, politics, business and entertainment, but every once in a while we should stop and consider the courtesy and care given by the courier.

For we certainly believe with all our hearts that if we mail a letter, ship a package or send something overnight, it is going to arrive safe and sound—often within the tiny window of our desire.

There is nothing else I know of that is so constant.

  • The grocery store runs out of sales items.
  • Politicians lie.
  • Religion can leave your soul dry and unfulfilled.
  • Entertainment is hit and miss.
  • And businesses set out to write a book and often get no further than Chapter Eleven.

But the courier stands, perhaps singularly, as the symbol of efficient, merciful, repetitious and tender loving care.

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Countdown

Countdown: (n) backward counting

At one time—I believe it was September 17th, 1988—it was contended that the world was supposed to end.funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

Then there was the rumor, based on the Mayan Calendar, that time would cease on 12/12/2012.

Yesterday, while watching TV, I was informed by a young scholar that the Earth has thirteen years left before it turns on us and exterminates all humanity.

No matter how much we try to turn the conversation to possibilities, joy and the general good cheer of common labor, there are just too many people determined to participate in a countdown to destruction.

Religious people think Jesus is going to come back to judge the quick and the dead, establishing his kingdom on Earth.

Environmentalists proclaim that the oceans will rise, and the weather will become so unpredictable that finding a place to dwell in the dwindling landscape will turn us all into barbarians.

Other people have financial countdowns.

But for some reason we seem determined to destroy our home—or at least talk about its doom in great detail.

It’s why a great man once said that the end of the world is known only to God, and Him alone. God doesn’t get drunk and share it with someone else. It really is on the downlow.

Because as nasty as we can be, thinking we have many more years to live, we all could become insanely possessed with our own survival if we literally had a clock ticking toward oblivion.


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Council

Council: (n) a body of persons specially designated to act in an advisory or legislative capacity

Sarah was voted to be a member of the council. She felt honored, even though it was a rather quick process. She was nominated, seconded and voted in before she had much of a chance to either object or assent.

On the way home from the meeting, she asked herself, “I wonder why they wanted me on the council?”funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

Sarah had to admit that she was sometimes guilty of over-thinking, but found that to be more virtuous than underthinking, or worse, being thoughtless.

Sarah decided there were only three possibilities why she was selected to be on the council:

  1. No one else really wanted to do it and they thought she might agree to be the pigeon.
  2. She would go to the council meetings, not make waves, not embarrass anybody from the hometown and just vote with the blowing of the wind.
  3. Or they might have thought that Sarah was an aggressive go-getter who would represent their causes and sentiments well, and argue, if necessary, to see change.

As Sarah drove home, she giggled. She realized that’s why very little gets done in business, religion or politics. The people who are voted onto councils, gathered for a congress or placed in the boardroom either were not quick enough to escape, so timid that it was assumed they wouldn’t mess with anything, or hot-heads that the community at large wanted to chase away—so they sent them in a new direction.


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Correct

Correct: (adj) conforming to fact or truth; free from error; accurate

“Correct” is the favored word for those who wish to appear righteous but are really working a hidden agenda or stoking a deception. For “correct” does not need to be accurate and of course, accurate can fall short of truthful while still maintaining a claim to accuracy.funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

We play this game in religion, entertainment, business and politics every single day.

We, as the consumer, as the public, are offered a few correct statements which fail to address some accurate observations. Since the accurate observations are hidden from us, we will never know the truth.

This is why we sit here today, arguing over a report that was commissioned by our own government, and now is being obfuscated by the same. It’s easier to read the report and find correct statements that jive with a needful political conclusion. We might even want to offer some accurate insights to make it seem that transparency was nearly achieved.

But the truth is a very hard business to open up on Main Street America.

The truth is often feared—and the truth, which is the only thing that can free us of the lying that paralyzes our progress, is hidden away and reserved for those who know it but are damned because they squelch it.

Simply because something is correct does not make it accurate. Accuracy can offer contradictions. Yet it is only when we have studied all of the accurate ideas that we might be prepared to draw some conclusions about truth.

But wise men know that we are not on a search for the correct, the accurate or even truth itself.

No—we are in pursuit of uncovering our own hypocrisy, which clears our eyes, to be willing to honestly see.


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