Complexion

Complexion: (n) the natural color, texture, and appearance of a person’s skin

Sometimes I want to laugh, and I’m told it’s not permissible. They connote it would be disrespectful or place me out of step with the times.funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

But I find it very difficult to take one matter seriously–after tens of thousands of years of habitation on the Earth, human beings are still evaluating one another by complexion–and not only evaluating, but feeling the need to live out a personality, a lifestyle, and a culture because of the hue of their skin.

But on this, the liberals and conservatives agree: there are many different cultures with many different customs unique unto them, which are often initiated simply due to the color of skin.

So if you’re a black person you don’t just have a darker complexion–you also need to be in agreement with your ancestors, going all the way back to Africa, which many Americans who have black skin might not even be able to identify on a map.

And if you’re a rosy-cheeked person who has relatives who were once Vikings, you must surely have an affinity for hard work, brats and beer (while denying rape and pillaging.)

I’m a mess. Ends up that I do have a color to my complexion, but enjoy perks from all different cultures and styles.

When will the Earth be able to solve its problems?

When our thinking has a deeper tone than our complexion.

 

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Anodyne

dictionary with letter A

Anodyne: (adj) a manner of communicating unlikely to provoke dissent or offense, deliberately uncontentious

I have never used this word before, nor have I heard it. But I certainly have encountered the spirit of it everywhere I go.

Even though I am often invited to speak and share my thoughts in front of audiences, at the very last moment the sponsor often approaches me in a kindly, smiling profile, trying to gently determine if I plan on being offensive or controversial.

Everyone on Earth knows that nothing is ever achieved by spreading the banquet table of the status quo and offering it for general consumption. The status quo has already had a season of being the status, and its quo is so well-known that there’s very little interest in it.

So the goal is to try to find something that has a bit of edge and transition in its nature, but at the same time, is edifying to the human soul.

The other option is to purposely startle people under the guise of entertainment, hiding behind the religion of the First Amendment, which allows for free speech, no matter how stupid and useless it may be.

So what are the guidelines? I can only speak for myself.

1. Don’t share anything you haven’t tried and found to be successful in your own life.

Fad philosophy is just like fad dieting–for a little while it seems to work and then when it falls apart, you end up weighted down worse than before.

2. It should be understandable.

I’m tired of people expressing superiority by complicating life. If you can’t make it easier for folks, shut your damn mouth.

3. The goal should be to edify and exhort other human beings, even if they choose not to receive the benefits.

  • My heart is more important to me than the conclusion.
  • My motivation is more essential than success.

I have no intention of saying things that are safe, because in the long run, our world becomes dangerous when either goodness doesn’t take evil seriously, or when evil can prove that goodness is way too serious.

 

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

Abustle

by J. R. Practix

dictionary with letter A

Abustle: (adj.) bustling; busy: the main drag was abustle with creative sidewalk artists.

One of my least favorite emotional states or climates for activity is frantic. This is why I don’t like “abustle.”

I don’t mind people being busy, but I don’t want them to let me know they are or appear they are on their “last nerve,” ready to explode with overwrought eagerness. I think the secret in life is to get a lot accomplished and surprise yourself at the end of the day with the list of successes, without ever appearing to lift too many fingers.

Yes–if we’re successful at achieving laziness but are still productive, we may have just discovered the true secret of life.

I get around folks all the time who move like gnats. Have you ever noticed a gnat? It has no particular direction and actually flies in little, tiny circles, attempting to locate some sort of goal that would give its life purpose. So one gnat in a room can be much more annoying than two flies. The flies are bigger and buzz more, but they do occasionally land and rest for a spell instead of continually fidgeting to make themselves known without any obvious purpose.

Do we really look more intelligent and creative when we’re abuzz? Does quickening our step get us somewhere faster, or just increase the possibility of tripping up? Is worrying the sign of true concern, or just an obvious admission that we don’t really know what we’re doing and certainly don’t believe in what we’re pursuing?

I do hate it when people say they’re busy. “I didn’t write you this week because I was busy.” So I guess that means that because I DID write to you, my life must be devoid of purpose. Or does it mean that I took the time to leisurely grant you three or four minutes of my thoughts to send your way?

Don’t tell me you’re too busy. Don’t run around all abustle, convincing the world that God is anxiously awaiting the results of your present adventure. We take ourselves too seriously. In the process, we admit that life is serious. In doing that, we stop having fun.

I am not busy. And if I am busy, I will stop immediately. I will not move one inch until my joy returns and I can go back to meticulously relishing every single moment of my endeavors.

Abaft

by J. R. Practix

dictionary with letter A

Abaft: {nautical} adv. in or behind the stern of a ship. prep. nearer the stern than; behind: the yacht has a shower just abaft the galley.

It was weird.

One morning I put on my sweat pants backwards. I knew almost immediately–because the tag was in the front. Tags aren’t supposed to be in the front. They’re supposed to be abaft.

See, I found that out this morning.

Stubbornly, I decided not to take my pants off and put the tag abaft. It bothered me all day. I became convinced that my crotch was being crushed by a lack of cloth which was intended to caress my backside, and was now kissing up to my front portions.

It was so annoying that when I saw a public restroom in a shopping center, I went into the bathroom, took off my pants to turn them around.  As I was disrobing, another fellow walked in and saw me pantless. His eyes twinkled, obviously seeking an explanation.

“A religious practice,” I stated, making the symbol of the cross on my chest.

Though bewildered, he continued about his business and I restored my pants to normalcy.

Likewise, I once heard an English professor refer to the US as a backward nation because we still cling to our religious fervor. I smiled. I thought about how many times we refer to other countries as backward, and now to have ourselves thrust abaft was unnerving.

I have never used the term again.

Also, at one time we called people who were shy backward. Now we insist they have some attention deficit disorder and give them a pill. Obviously, medication is thrust forward and never abaft.

There are many things I wish were abaft. Prejudice. Anger. Violence. Stupidity presented as pseudo-intellectualism. I-Phones that don’t seem to have a “we” application. And for that matter–back to the original definition–being stern. Yes, wouldn’t it be wonderful if we actually WERE abaft to being stern? If we realistically stopped thinking that serious faces have deeper thoughts?  Yes, let’s put THAT abaft.

And for the record, I became so obsessed with my sweat pants and which way to put them on that I took a pair of scissors and snipped the tag. Sometimes it’s just better to be ignorant than obsessed.

Yes, obsession of that sort should be abaft.