Debit Card

Debit Card: (n) a plastic card that resembles a credit card but functions like a check 

No one should have a debit card if they don’t know the value of money.

And if they use their debit card poorly, they will soon have a nasty lesson on the danger of money.

I think a debit card is an absolutely marvelous invention—as long as you have money in the bank and you’re just swiping it away.

Yes—how apropos. “Look at me! I’m swiping my own money. I am stealing from myself. Don’t tell anyone.”

Of course, someone is told.

Whoever is in charge of keeping the tally on your balance—well, that individual knows fully well how much money can still be swiped before you are not only a thief, but a criminal.

Money is serious business that should never be taken too seriously.

But when money is not taken seriously, you can get into serious trouble.

I am happiest when I am not dealing with money or debit cards or credit or paying for anything.

I’ve never gone fishing in a lake and had a crab crawl up to me and charge me for the fish I just caught. (That may be because crabs don’t live near lakes.)

But there’s something beautiful about entertaining oneself, or even feeding your face, without spending a dime. But it is not interesting enough that I will actually pursue it.

It does, however, make great verbiage for an article, where you’re trying to be just a little bit cutie—and bitchy—about debit cards.

Choose

Choose: (v) to pick out, select or decide on a course of action

I could be kind or I could be mean. I can choose.

Being mean is touted. Being kind is lifted up as virtuous, as it is also mocked as valueless. Is there something in between? How about “keen?”

I could be alert, or I could be dull. It’s for me to choose. Alert is what we applaud and dull is what we observe.

I can be selfish, or look for opportunities to be giving. Is it true that if I give I actually get more, or is that just promotional talk from those who desperately need me to give?

I can choose to enjoy the holidays, or complain about how hectic they are. I do seem to be more grown-up when I bitch. Isn’t that ironic?

I can choose to believe in God, or don the garments of the intelligentsia and sneer at the notion. Do I really want to tie myself into a bunch of hillbilly religionists? Yet do I want to choose to be part of the obnoxiously over-educated?

I can insist I’m a man with no knowledge of women, or scream like a woman who says she is unfairly treated by a man. I suppose I could choose to be a man who understands that a woman is just a human. But it would be a very unpopular position.

That’s the problem. The things I feel I need to choose, which are full of spirit and life, are often relegated to being “buddied up” with the ridiculous and superstitious.

How will I choose?

Can I keep my choice to myself, or must my light shine before all men?

How will we choose?

How can we choose and satisfy the disgruntled masses, while pursuing the glory and advantage of simply believing there’s more?

 

 

 

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Business

j-r-practix-with-border-2

Business: (n) the practice of commerce.

“Business as usual.”

Maybe if we clarified what “usual” is, we might have a better idea of the true nature of business.

If by business we mean simply finding a way to create commerce without any real concern except profit margin, then we unleash an unruly effort on the world that doesn’t seem to answer to any higher guideline.

But if we know what the “usual” is of business, and that “usual” has productive roots, then business can be a good thing–matter of fact, the heart of every endeavor.

For even the Good Book tells us not to be slothful in business. What is slothful in business?

Anyone who starts a storefront or an Internet escapade should ask two questions:

  1. Is this needed?
  2. Can I maintain quality?

Because if it’s not needed, it not only will have a short life, but it continues to increase the cynicism about true ingenuity in the marketplace.

And if the essence of quality if sacrified to manufacturing costs, then people will cynically hold a broken piece of junk in their hands that makes them further suspicious of the world as a whole.

Slothful in business is when we’re more concerned with producing than we are with being productive.

Not every corporation needs to have a noble cause–but everyone who decides to market a product needs to be able to give a quick explanation of its purpose and value, and also a guarantee that it was put together with tender, loving care.

Anyone who thinks that’s unrealistic will probably find him or herself in a slothful profile. And anyone who asks the two magic questions–is it needed and can I maintain quality?–is helping to build the trust among humans that is necessary to keep us from self-destruction.

 

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Admirable

Words from Dic(tionary)

Admirable (adj.): arousing or deserving respect or approval: e.g. he has one admirable quality.

B.T.P.Y.A.

It’s an acronym I came up with in the 1980s. I put together a little traveling show, along with my oldest son, who was sixteen at the time and flirting with insanity. I thought it would be a great way for us to connect and maybe enrich the lives of some other folks along the way.

It stood for: Be the Person You Admire.

It’s a rather simple principle, asking a very powerful question: what is the purpose of admiring–granting admiration to someone or some cause–if you’re not prepared to mimic the virtue which you acclaim?

For instance, many people have great admiration for Abraham Lincoln but still find themselves enslaving certain portions of humanity in the prison of their own minds.

There are billions of folks who adhere, with great reverence, to the divinity of Jesus of Nazareth, who nevertheless do not agree that the most important thing in life is to treat those who are considered “the least” as valuable.

There are so many things we admire, but we do it from afar. Matter of fact, we even have a phrase to handle that: “I admired her from afar.”

Now, I personally have had an unrequited crush on a woman in my life AND I have had a requited sensation which led to romantic bliss. I can truthfully tell you–the second one is better.

I do not think we can continue to express admiration without emulating that which we proclaim to be beautiful, significant or holy.

Case in point: I am not a Christian because I like church. I tolerate church because I’m a Christian. Church, to me, is one of those institutions which has become weak and sometimes pointless and needs my mercy, generosity and support. I do not abandon the church because she sometimes embarrasses me.

But in the style of Jesus, who I admire, I continue to love the unlovely, lift up the downtrodden and energize the grave.

B.T.P.Y.A.–if we would just follow through on the things that generate admiration in our spirits, and give ourselves a chance to “Xerox goodness,” doing our best to replicate some of the value, we would improve our lives by leaps and bounds.

Admiration is often a way to escape the responsibility of doing something ourselves.

OR … it is a roadmap which will take us to a destination where we can create our own admirable deeds.