Cottonmouth

Cottonmouth: (n) a venomous snake of the swamps in southeastern U.S., that grows to about 4 feet

Camping is where two people possessing limited experience take five other people who have no experience, to convince those individuals that they, in their limited experience, are actually frontiersmen.funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

I didn’t know this when I was younger.

I got invited to go on a “woodsy trip” because some of my friends thought it would be nice to have me along so I could be funny and tell stories over the fire at night while they toasted marshmallows to a perfect golden brown.

What they did not realize is that I do not favor huge amounts of physical exertion and have been known to sweat when over-thinking. During the day, I found myself an annoying appendage on a process that needed no annoyance other than insisting that a bunch of know-nothings could go into the wilderness and pretend that their “inner cave” people would come to the surface and teach them.

One of the warnings from our two experts—who, we later found out, had simply read a book on the subject—well, one of their admonitions was to “watch out for poisonous snakes.” In this particular region, the most popular variety of the varmints was called a cottonmouth.

I, for one, was curious how the creature had gotten its name, and was told “not to worry much about it because most of the snakes in the area were black snakes, not cottonmouths.”

I paused. I said, “Do they look differently?”

“No,” replied one of the guides. “They’re both black.”

Figuring I had come up with the best possible follow-up question, I queried, “Since they’re both black, how do you know the difference between a black snake and a cottonmouth?”

He rolled his eyes at me. “Don’t be silly,” he chided. “The cottonmouth has a white mouth, which is obvious.”

Everybody else sitting around the circle accepted this explanation. It stirred some concern inside me. If I was going to be close enough to see the inside of a snake’s mouth, to determine whether it was just your average black snake or a cottonmouth, wouldn’t I already be in trouble?

Unless I had a reputation of being a dentist to the reptilian world, I don’t think they would be opening their mouths unless they were planning to bite me.

I was about to bring up this point to my friends when one of the guides—the leaders of our bodies and souls—patted me on the shoulder and said, “Come on. Just trust the Lord.”

As he walked away, I thought, didn’t God warn Adam and Eve about the serpent? 


Donate Button


Subscribe to Jonathan’s Weekly Podcast

Good News and Better News

 

Collar

Collar: (n) a band of material around the neck of a shirt, dress, coat, or jacket

Feeling very comfortable with my interactions with a dear young lady, I explained to her that I preferred collarless shirts. She listened intently,
coming very close to feigning interest.

I explained that the collar rubbed against my neck–itched–and when I sweat, made my skin burn.

It was further aggravated if I inserted a tie into the shirt, needing to fasten that top button. She listened and listened. She even smiled a couple of times.

At the end of the conversation, when I felt I had thoroughly explained the reasons for my preference, she walked over and looked around my neck and said, “I don’t think the collar is your problem.”

I was stupefied. (Well, at least confused.)

I said, “Okay… What is my problem?”

“You just have a really, really dirty neck,” she said.

I was offended. I suppose there were other choices available to me, but fortunately, she stepped in and offered to wash my neck for me so I would understand that my skin was soiled and therefore overly sensitive.

So she got a sudsy washcloth and gently rubbed my neck until it was clean. I was embarrassed, enticed, curious, dumbfounded and a little turned on.

She finished washing my neck, dried it with a clean towel and put some lotion on it.

She was right.

I never had another problem wearing a shirt with a collar.

The only problem was scheduling the times for her to come and wash my neck.

 

Donate Button

 

Subscribe to Jonathan’s Weekly Podcast

Good News and Better News

 

Christmas Tree

Christmas tree: (n) a decorated tree at Yuletide

“If you want a tree, go get it yourself.”

That’s what my dad said when I was fourteen years old and asked him why we had not put up our tree as of yet, at Christmastime.

Normally the practice was to pick a tree and decorate it on my birthday–one week before Christmas. But for some reason, December 20th had rolled around and nobody had even mentioned getting one.

I was offended, disrupted, angry, bewildered, uncertain, out-of-spirits and generally and profoundly rebellious, in the most adolescent way possible.

So I complained. That’s what I knew how to do.

Since I had asked at least a half a dozen times about the tree, I felt it was time for me to object. he option provided for me by my dad was to go get a tree myself.

This was plausible because our family owned a little farm outside the town, where we grew some Christmas trees. So I had my brother drive me out to the location, grabbed a little hatchet and headed off through the snowy ground to bag myself an evergreen.

With my chubby legs and being severely out of shape, I was completely exhausted from the walk to the pines–ready to give up on my mission. After all, it wasn’t my fault. I was not in charge. If the damn family didn’t want a tree, then we should be treeless.

But the problem was, that included me–and I didn’t want to be treeless.

So braving the cold, little hatchet in hand, I found what I thought would be a good tree and began to whack at the trunk.

My hatchet had obviously been purchased by Davy Crockett when he went to the Alamo and not sharpened since. The first three strikes at the tree trunk didn’t even split the bark. So as not to bore you, I will shorten this story by telling you that an hour later, sweat pouring off my face, I finally got the tree to give up its roots and prepare to move to my home.

The trunk was an absolute mess. It was not a cut, but rather a massacre. But I drug it out, my brother and I put it on top of the car, and we drove it to the house. He kindly helped me saw the bottom off to make it even so we could put it into the Christmas tree stand. To add insult to my effort, it ended up being too tall. We had to cut off part of the top.

But eventually it sat in our living room, waiting to be adorned.

That evening when my father returned from working at his loan company, he stepped into the house, looked at the tree, and said to me, “Is that the best tree you could get?”

I didn’t respond to him directly, but in my mind I thought, “Yes. It’s the best tree I could get. Because this year it’s my tree.”

 

 

Donate Button

Caffeine

Caffeine: (n) a crystalline stimulant that is found especially in tea and coffee

I was twenty years old and was thoroughly convinced that every idea that popped into my head was granted by the supreme fairies of genius notions. I was in the midst of the seduction of a particular inspiration, working feverishly, with pen in hand, when I realized I was getting
sleepy.

Successful people don’t sleep, I thought. A budding impresario does not yearn for the pillow.

So I went down to the local drugstore and bought a product called “No Doze. ” I didn’t even read the instructions. (You have to be twenty-five years old to consider such a mature move.)

I just took two. Nothing happened.

So I chased it with two more, waited half and hour and took two more.

Within the span of two hours, I ended up taking eight No Doze, when I finally decided to read the instructions, which explained that each tablet contained the caffeine equivalent to fifteen cups of coffee.

Shortly after reading this warning, my heart started to palpitate. My face blanched, Sweat burst out on every part of my body. I thought I was going to die.

For the first time in my life, I went to the emergency room of the hospital and explained to them what I had done.

The doctor quipped, “You shouldn’t have taken so many.”

True, but not poignant.

By this time my chest was cramping and my legs were twitching. The doctor reached over into his magical cabinet and pulled out a shot of something, which I later learned was a tranquilizer.

I slept in that examination room for six hours. I awoke drained, embarrassed, and desperately trying to explain how I planned to pay for the late-night visit.

So over the years I have convinced myself that I am allergic to caffeine–so as not to accidentally stimulate any reaction similar to the one I had that night so many years ago.

 

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

Bondage

Bondage: (n) the state of being a slave.

Dribbling sweat and spitting out angry consonants, the preacher forewarns his timid congregation of the dangerDictionary B of the bondage of sin. Here’s the real essence of bondage:

Bondage is the loss of free will.

Whether it’s taken from you due to addiction, removed by the authorities because of your criminal activity, or snatched from you by religious fervor which insists on stringent practices to please a pissed-off God.

Bondage is when human beings can’t decide for themselves.

Presently, we are in bondage to the delusion of destiny–the ridiculous notion that our lives are pre-determined by some ethereal force which has programmed us for purposes beyond our control.

Actually, the most frightening thing about human life is that we choose to do both the evil and the good that spew from our nature. We are not prodded by the heavens nor are we drug to the depths of hell by demons.

The only true bondage is when we revoke our free will to something, someone, or some place and find ourselves dissatisfied, without a vote.

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


Jonathan’s Latest Book Release!

PoHymn: A Rustling in the Stagnant

Click here to get your copy now!

PoHymn cover jon

 

 

Bodily

Bodily: (adj) of or concerning the body.

Dictionary B

Every piece of contradiction is held in place with a reverence to a little scrap of silliness that we’re frightened to abandon.

So in politics we accept lying because it is the silliness we believe holds the process together.

In entertainment, we talk about the “bottom line,” preaching the notion that the pieces of art we foster must make huge profits–otherwise they are not worthy of production.

Likewise, we lift high the silliness of “blind faith,” when it is our doubt that makes our spiritual experience rich with discovery and hope.

And finally, this certainly is true when we talk about bodily functions.

Everybody craps, pisses, farts, screws, sweats, stinks and has aches and pains.

But rather than finding the great commonality which might remove a lion’s share of foolish bigotry, we whisper about these bodily similarities for fear of offending those who somehow believe that the One who created us would find such talk “nasty.”

I have nothing against appropriate dialogue in given surroundings.

But as long as we are afraid of our bodies, we will generate a cloud of deceit to hide our human essence.

 

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


Jonathan’s Latest Book Release!

PoHymn: A Rustling in the Stagnant

Click here to get your copy now!

PoHymn cover jon

 

 

Beatific

Beatific: (adj) blissfully happy; imparting holy bliss.Dictionary B

He probably smelled like sweat, grain and farts.

I’m talking about Jesus.

Since he was always on the move in an arid climate and there were no ways to prevent body odor, he reeked.

There was also no halo around his head to let you know that he was special, divine or even beatific.

  • What you had was an encounter.
  • What you possessed was your sense of wonder.
  • And what you had to decide for yourself was whether what you heard could contradict what you were seeing and smelling.

I supposed it would be easier if angels came with a glow. But actually, angels just come with truth. And even though the truth makes us free, we are not always in a hurry to discover our freedom, but are literally captivated by our error.

What tells us that the experience in front of us has eternal possibilities?

How can we know that we’re in the presence of greatness?

And how can we allow words and ideas which may seem contradictory to our training to come and soothe us with mercy and tenderness?

I don’t know the answer.

It is the way of mankind to ignore true value in favor of cheap exchange.

But we can take hope in the notion that beauty can often be identified by the presence of genuine humility.

 

Donate Button

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