Covert Action

Covert action: (n) a secret action undertaken to influence the course of political events, as a government intelligence operation.

Stubborn doesn’t work.

Oh, we think it does. Somehow or another we believe that “sticking to our guns” empowers us to win the day.

Think about that phrase: “sticking to your guns.”

May I point out that if you’ve had to introduce a gun into a situation, maybe arbitration has failed.funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

We live in a time when people are impressed with the ability to stubbornly hold on to their politics and their beliefs. It makes it very difficult to have the kind of intelligent conversation which allows for everyone to walk away, head out the door, and on their way home, change their minds just a little.

Maybe that’s the best we can do—just change ourselves a teeny bit, so we don’t come across too predictable or too obnoxious.

Yet I will tell you—it is fruitless to approach a stubborn person with a stubborn profile. You will never argue down someone who’s argumentative. And for those who believe they have found the secret of God, you are wasting your time blurting out a piece of theological insight that might enhance their profile and journey.

Those who still give a damn, wish to see some change and are yearning for a humanity that is as humane to humans as it is to animals, well…

If that’s what you want, you’re going to have to be covert.

You’re going to need to be humorous when others are blatantly serious.

You’re going to be required to bring some gravitas when the world seems to have gone tipsy on an alcoholic binge.

And you’re going to have to find ways to say good things in a better way, in order to convince anyone to honor the best.

You will not be able to speak to Republicans if they smell “donkey” on you.

Likewise, those Democrats can see an “elephant” coming a mile away.

What is needed is a covert action, if we’re going to change the politics, the spirituality, the manners, the integrity, the ethics and the temperament of our time.

We will have to cease to punch their conscience and instead, create new ways to tickle their fancy.

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Cohort

Cohort: (n) a group of people banded together

I have a son who’s convinced that I am becoming more conservative as I get older.

Actually, nothing could be further from the truth. Age has done one thing and only one thing for me–it has insisted that I be practical.

It stands over me, often in a threatening pose, barking in my ear that the plans I had made to do something beyond my physical abilities are not filled with initiative, but rather, reek of stupidity.

I become more and more astounded with the simplicity of the statement, “Those that are not against us are for us.”

Therefore, mankind is my cohort, and I, its.

I am looking for reasons to enjoy the people around me instead of tagging them as enemies to be avoided.

Every time I read something, I find one little tiny nugget of valuable common sense. It doesn’t matter whether it’s the Bible or the Communist Manifesto–each document has a golden gleam which makes its writing valuable and worthy of human hearing.

But also, each document is chock-full of filler–statements thrown in, sometimes as afterthoughts and often in ignorance.

So when a Republican talks, I listen for sense. Likewise, when a Democrat shares, I probe the speech for reasonability. In the process of doing this, I find myself making more friends and being far less critical.

Recently a friend asked what I thought about a song that was being touted on the Internet. I replied, “They started on the same beat, didn’t miss a lyric and ended in pitch.”

There’s a lot to be said for that. It is a fine beginning for discussion. But often, humans will find one word within the body of the poetry which they consider distasteful, and relegate the entire presentation to being hellish nothingness.

A cohort of critics.

How boring.

How boorish.

How stubborn

How meaningless.

I found out some time ago that the world never gets anything right. Celebration occurs when the effort comes close.

 

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Churn

Churn: (v) to move about vigorously.

It all depends what you disrupt.

If you stir up and churn milk and have the patience to stay with it, you get creamy, sweet butter. On the other hand, you can probably sit all
day long churning dirt, and even if you add water, you will end up with muddy conclusions.

It isn’t always effective to motivate people or circumstances. If there is quality, intelligence, spirit and humility, then churning can bring about a beautiful, natural change.

But if people are stubborn, angry, racist and ignorant, churning normally initiates violence.

You’ve got to judge your circumstances.

Is there enough milk of human kindness in the people you’re dealing with to see them turn into butter?

 

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Blown

Blown: (adj) past participle of blow

Dictionary BYou can’t make a duck bark. It’s a simple statement.

Therefore, it’s virtually impossible to get your dog to quack.

Patterns of behavior are established through choice and genetics, and maintained by stubborn tradition.

So as I listen to people complain about leaders who are causing turmoil and steering the American public into bad decisions, I look on, perplexed.

  • Nobody can make me prejudiced.
  • Nobody can turn me into a bigot.
  • Nobody can suddenly convince me that black people are evil or that people from China are out to get me.

I am the one who is ready to hear the nonsense.

So therefore, it is the responsibility of our citizens to own up to the fact that the transitions which have occurred in our lifetime, which have promoted truth or at least tolerance, have been avoided by many, who have sat by, pretending to be part of the parade, only to whisper complaints to each other as the floats go by.

There is a disgruntled spirit in our country which is blown by every ill wind.

It is unconfronted.

It is denied–as we pretend that everything is alright.

It isn’t.

We are still one of the most bigoted countries in the world, intolerant of the behavior of each other, and willing to become violent if someone takes our parking space.

I don’t think we will change these attitudes by hatching meanness to address the meanness.

But as long as people are blown by every wind of doctrine and every carnival barker, we will suffer under a cloud of uncertainty.

 

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Bipartisan

Bipartisan: (adj) involving the agreement or cooperation of two political parties

Dictionary B

Compromise is when one person wants pizza and another desires a hot dog, so it is decided to settle on hamburgers, with the hope that the bun will remind the pizza desirer of his choice and the beef in the hamburger will hearken to the filler in the hot dog.

In other words, no one’s happy but instead, tries to feast on the nobility of negotiation.

Bipartisan is a term that is not used as often in our day and age, mainly because we are convinced of the purity of our motives, and therefore, the divinity of our cause.

Or maybe it’s just that we’re too damn stubborn to sit and listen after we’ve yapped and fillibustered.

But the truth of the matter is, bipartisan is a ridiculous notion put forth by people who spend their day thinking that the world’s problems will be solved by forming an excellent debate.

When one person wants pizza and another wants hot dogs, hamburger is not the answer. It is unsatisfying to both parties and merely provides a surrogate solution, which will continue to be picked at by the participating partisans while they try to get their way.

Truth is never what you think, what I think or even a merger of our thought bubbles.

Truth is something completely erratic, which exists only in the hearts of those who are willing to humbly admit that they do not know what the hell they’re talking about.

Only through conversation can the stupidity of our reasoning be revealed, and then, only through repentance will it ever be abandoned.

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Bandage

Bandage: (n) a strip of material used to bind a wound or to protect an injured part of the body.Dictionary B

The reason “the truth makes you free” is that you do not have to exhaust yourself finding new hiding places for your stupidity.

During a particularly stubborn point in my life, I developed an infection in my left big toe.

I didn’t think much about it. At first it just looked like athlete’s foot. (Matter of fact, that’s what I called it. I was rather proud to be athletic enough to have a corresponding foot.)

But it got worse. It festered and then spread to my nearby toe, so I had two little fellas who were now unable to go to market.

My denial increased.

I did not want to go to the doctor with it because I felt ridiculous asking a man of medicine to deal with “my little piggies.”

It began to seep pus, having to be bandaged every day by a friend of mine, who was so gracious that she pretended it wasn’t a big deal.

After a while, it stunk.

She and I pretended like it didn’t, so as to keep propriety moving along properly. Then it started turning black.

That’s not good.

So I tried more home remedies, and convinced myself on a daily basis that it appeared to be healing. I even bought some silver over the Internet because it was referred to as an “old-fashioned antibiotic” that I could pour on the wound and believe I had discovered some great medical elixir of the gods.

My toe got so sick that it finally made all of me sick. I went to the hospital, but was too late to save the two toes, so they were amputated.

I hope I haven’t grossed you out with my story, and if you’re still reading it, you must have a great constitution.

But here’s the truth about bandages:

They were created to cover a wound while it’s healing … not disguise a wound that needs treatment.

 

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Ankle

dictionary with letter A

Ankle: (n.) the narrow part of the body, including a joint, between the foot and the calf.

During a six month period at age twenty, I sprained my ankle about five times. It was brought about by a natural imbalance.

I was a healthy, energetic and semi-athletic fat boy who believed I could move with the grace and ease of my skinnier counterparts, only to discover that my obesity played out whenever my ankle would step in the wrong direction and twist.

It made me so mad. I kept re-injuring the same ankle over and over again–my left one.

The first time I banged it up was caused by stepping down from a bus into a gopher hole, turning the ankle so badly that I was convinced that the bottom of my shoe touched my shin. Unfortunately, I had plans to go on a weekend trip which I refused to cancel, so when the ankle on my already-chubby leg grew to the size of a tree trunk, I insisted on walking on it and continuing my plans with friends, even though moving a mere twenty yards took me about thirty minutes.

I didn’t care. I was young, stubborn and determined to continue my quest for invincibility.

So the ankle tried to heal, and then because I went out to play football or shoot some hoops, it got bent again.

Honestly, I don’t know when it stopped being susceptible to injury, but somewhere along the line I must have rested it long enough to stop the onslaught of repetitive painfulness.

There are two parts of the human body that were never meant to be used for walking, running or actually any kind of upright position. One is the knee and the other is the ankle.

Sometimes when I look at that small region near the foot which is supposed to handle all of our weight, I think it’s a wonder we aren’t laid up in hospital beds … all the time.

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