Circumstance

Circumstance: (n) a condition connected with or relevant to an event or action

“Considering the circumstance…”

Damn it, don’t lie to me. You’re not really going to let me consider my circumstance. You might like to pretend you will, so that I will
consider yours.

The true breath of fresh air which enlivens the human brain is that second place cannot be excused away due to circumstance.

We might get sympathy. Some people might even agree that we got an unfair shake.

But once they walk away from us and talk to others, they will call second place what it is–a loss.

The time to consider circumstance is before an endeavor is begun, not after it’s been anemically performed.

It’s not so much that we love winners as it is that we hate losers.

If someone is able to lose with the understanding that there was a personal deficit, we’re willing to allow them into the competition again to acquire a second chance.

Even Apollo Creed gave Rocky an additional crack at the title, because Rocky did so well the first time and did not pretend he won. (Please forgive the obscure reference to a forty-year-old movie.)

What can I do to convince myself that pleading “circumstance” only makes me look like I’m needy instead of letting people know that I am fully aware that I fell short and am prepared to change things up?

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Chuckle

Chuckle: (n) a quiet or suppressed laugh

He drove me crazy (even though that would not require many miles of journey.)

He was a theater critic who came out to watch my show, and even though I settled my inner being by insisting that I would not glance his
way, my left eyeball seemed to deny the commitment and wander over to view his reaction.

I was hilarious–at least as hilarious as I ever get.

I was on–which is merely the opposite of off.

The audience was with me–though you’re never quite sure how much of it is sympathy.

He just sat there. He didn’t smirk. It was like someone had bet him that he could remain emotionless during the entire affair.

I had never met him before, but I hated him. Not with a ferocious anger, sprouting a rage of violence–just a normal, temporary, human hatred, which could be assuaged merely by the introduction of a simple compliment.

After the show he came backstage to see me. I was surprised. I thought the next thing I would receive from this fellow would be his review, in which he used as many synonyms for “mediocre” as possible.

But turns out he thought I was hilarious.

I had to ask him, “Did you ever laugh?”

He frowned at me as if concerned about how much I might have hurt myself falling off the turnip truck.

“You don’t have to laugh out loud to chuckle inside,” he explained. “I am an internal chuckler, who simultaneously admires the material that amuses me.”

I stared at him, but decided not to pursue the conversation, since at this point, the outcome was in my favor.

But as I considered his insight, I realized that I often watched things on television or at the movies, and would tell people how funny they were–yet I wasn’t really sure my face exuded anything other than a death growl.

All I can say is, you can feel free to chuckle, even if it’s done inside your closet of appreciation.

But thank God–oh, thank God–for those who spill and spew their laughter.

 

 

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Bend

Bend: (v) to shape or force something straight into a curve

Dictionary B

I cannot tell you how many nibbles I have in my ass from all the things I’ve taken for granted, which have now come back to bite me.

I think it’s probably the greatest lesson I’ve learned–since everything in life is basically temporary, don’t allow yourself to become permanently smug.

When I was much younger, I was very athletic–not in the conventional sense of playing for organized teams, but I was pretty proficient at most games.

This was especially significant since all of my life, I have struggled with obesity. So I always heard the phrase, “You really move good for a big man.”

This caused me to puff up my chest, believing that my present prowess, provided by my youth, would continue on into my later years.

I never stopped to thank God for the parts of me that bend, because I assumed they would continue their vigil.

They didn’t.

First my ankles bothered me, then my knees, and I will stop there because I don’t want to encourage further sympathy from body parts which have not yet given up.

I am in awe of bending knees. What a magnificent joint.

So since I have not retained the ability to bend all of my human physical parts with as much efficiency as I once did, I have decided to compensate by bending my will and mercy in directions that establish … my greater flexibility.

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Arm

dictionary with letter A

Arm: (n) each of the two upper limbs of the human body from the shoulder to the hand.

I do believe that many times we are actually upset about how well our body parts work together. Let me explain.

If the foot hurts, the rest of the body expresses its sympathy by having the brain note the pain and informing all the other members that they may be pulling extra duty during the day.

This became obvious to me when I woke up one morning and had slept on my arm in such a way that it felt sprained. The shocker came when I realized that this particular dangling participant in my human form performs many functions that I never even think about. So it was virtually impossible to wash myself in the shower, brush my teeth, comb my hair or reach for my box of cereal at the breakfast table.

Each time I did, I was reminded by a conscientious brain that the part of my anatomy I wished to be using was presently on sick leave.

This was communicated through pain.

Within an hour, though, I had become somewhat adept at utilizing my other arm for some functions. I also used my legs more to perform duties instead of reaching to achieve my quest.

I was mindful of my hurt arm and gave it the respect it was due, while simultaneously trying to gently “exercise” it of its demon.

It lasted all day long–and even though I was very glad when I woke up the next morning to discover I had usage back in my limb, I was impressed by the efficiency of my body and simultaneously humbled that some way or another… I can’t always find that same cooperation with the people around me.

 

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Archangel

dictionary with letter A

Archangel: (n) an angel of high rank

Gabriel drew the short straw.

God had decided that announcing the birth of the Messiah would have to be prompted by a visitation from an archangel.

Gabriel lost.

It isn’t that the archangels were especially angry about saving mankind–it’s just that trying to tell a fourteen-year-old virgin that she’s pregnant is not exactly the most pleasant task.

Angels are always a little perplexed with humanity anyway. Matter of fact, the only thing an angel and a Homo sapien share in common is free will. And any respectable angel will be quick to tell you that they use their free will much more righteously than earth-bound bipeds.

Gabriel mused. How do you tell a young girl that her life is about to be interrupted in the most inconvenient ways, only to be further dismantled by adventure and mayhem?

It fell Gabriel’s lot.

He spent a few moments alone to make sure he had rid himself of all preconceived ideas and prejudice. He realized that a certain amount of compassion would be necessary to talk to Mary of Nazareth about welcoming a baby which would not be easily explained tor either her betrothed or to her parents, sitting around the dinner table.

In contemplating it, the archangel gained more and more heart and sympathy for the human race:

  • They were certainly more tempted than angels, who spent time surrounded by goodness and mercy.
  • Humans also possessed an emotional explosion not fully comprehended in the heart of the standard celestial inhabitant.
  • And on top of that, Mary was a young girl with dreams which would have to be melted into a divine mission of being the mother of God.

Yes, Gabriel drew the short straw.

The rest of the angels flew away, giggling in delight. But instead of viewing it as a burden, Gabriel took it on as a challenge, which turned into an opportunity.

“Behold, Mary, you are blessed.”

That’s a pretty nice thing to say.

Even though the rest of the message was much more daunting, he felt good about blessing the little lady.

Archangels are the bridge between God and human beings.

Michael, one of the other members of the team, once noted, “We angels have just enough of God to know what we should do, and enough human to sometimes be miserable doing it.”

Maybe that’s true.

But without the archangels, our world would slide into a pit of mediocrity, and nothing of excellence would be achieved.

Time passed (though angels have no watches).

Gabriel sat for a moment, remembering what it was like to speak to Mary. There were many jobs that followed.

He recalled that one of his favorites was whispering into the ear of an artist who was staring at the ceiling, wondering what to do … prompting him to paint God.

 

 

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Aplenty

dictionary with letter A

Aplenty (adj): in abundance (e.g.he has work aplenty.)

I needed this word this morning.

Often my perspective needs an adjustment and I have neither the aptitude nor the tools.

Why? Because the momentum of my heart and soul has been stalled by my mind and body. These roommates fight all the time–and just when I think that my emotions and spirituality have gained an edge, my greedy brain and my insatiable appetites rally their forces and win the day.

It’s always over the same issue: is this going to be enough?

  • It’s why romances break up–because we begin to believe that the person we once adored has somehow become dowdy.
  • It’s how obesity overtakes our physical frame–because we’re convinced that our usual single doughnut isn’t quite enough to finish our cup of coffee.
  • It’s how many people abandon spirituality–because they expect God to make the journey to them instead of meeting Him halfway.

For me, it was looking ahead to a busy day and wondering if I had the wherewithal to cover the many nuances. Rather than taking it one step at a time, and realizing the fact that I was breathing was certainly a positive sign, I instead allowed my brain to become worrisome, which immediately made my body grow fatigued in sympathy.

I don’t know what “aplenty” is. By the time I’m convinced that I have enough, I sit there alone with my stockpile–having missed the present opportunity.

Maybe that’s the definition of maturity: keep firing your bullets and stop counting your ammunition.

 

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Anguish

dictionary with letter A

Anguish: (n) severe mental or physical pain or suffering.

One man’s severe is another woman’s menstrual cramp.

Therefore, when is it permissible to share your feelings concerning the load you carry? When are we allowed to admit that we hurt?

Because honestly, I have grown up in a world where complaining is permitted and hated at the same time.

Of course, I personally don’t complain. I merely cite examples, while others around me drone on incessantly about their often irrelevant needs.

How do you develop a sympathy for what one person considers to be severe anguish while secretly wondering if they’re just wimping out?

Is there a time to tell people that they’re wimps? Or is that just, in our modern-day society, considered to be another form of verbal bullying?

Over the years, I have learned that there are small windows–tiny little openings that are available when we can share our heart and be candid about our misgivings and pain. It is brief, it is personal and to exceed the time limit or guess wrong and ram your head into a brick wall instead of sticking it through a window is extraordinarily socially embarrassing.

So I have developed the idea that I will listen to almost anyone for about two minutes if they feel the need to flush out their anguish, and will only excuse myself when people either start to repeat themselves or insist that there’s no hope for solution.

We all have different thresholds of pain.

To ask individuals to adapt to my style is just as aggravating as if I were to demand they change the color of their skin.

But intelligent folks learn when to share, when to pray and even, to some degree … when to suffer in silence.

 

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