G-Poppers … October 20th, 2017

 Jonathots Daily Blog

(3465)

He was tall, lean, with tight jeans, leather skin, cowboy hat and a big cigarette puffing out of his head.

He was The Marlboro Man.

G-Pop grew up believing that this cowboy was the symbol of masculinity.

Unfortunately, G-Pop was so-so tall, portly, marshmallow skin, baseball hat, with no “Puff the Magic Dragon.” Needless to say, his appearance was not deemed macho.

The vision persisted until other images of emaciated victims of cigarette smoking splashed on the scene–the consequence of years of tobacco, tar and nicotine.

So nowadays we don’t really know what makes up a man or what constitutes a woman, though we are certain that the two sexes are better when they intertwine instead of interact.

What makes a man?

What constitutes a woman?

It does sound like the beginning of a very long essay, or a series done by a writer attempting to generate readership through a dribble of controversy. G-Pop shall save you the time.

  • A man is a person who tells the truth, beginning with himself.
  • Likewise a woman tells the truth, beginning with herself.

The absence of truth places every human being right back in the center of the animal kingdom, willing to do anything to survive.

And as Pontius Pilate sardonically phrased, “What is truth?”

Truth is what we understand to be factual, while waiting for more information to enlighten us.

There’s nothing sexier than telling the truth.

Nothing more romantic than making it clear that you can be trusted.

There’s nothing more valuable to another soul than being able to relax with the account that’s been stated, and have some measure of confidence that it’s true.

Matter of fact, the truth sounds terribly alluring until you realize that occasionally it demands confession, apologies and repentance.

There is a contingency of our society that has begun to believe that the best way to avoid difficulty is to always deny any responsibility. It is pukey, sickening and devoid of any of the clarity which makes it simpler to live life.

Somebody lied to The Marlboro Man about cigarettes, so he ended up lying to us. Somebody’s lying today, and we are being tempted to buy into the lies and offer them up as explanations.

God help us all.

G-Pop would love to encourage his children to tell the truth, beginning with themselves.

It’s not always pretty, but it is always beautiful.

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Dear Man/Dear Woman: A Noteworthy Conversation … January 30th, 2016

 Jonathots Daily Blog

(2829)

Dear Man Dear Woman

Dear Woman: A couple of days ago I read an article in a magazine…

 

Dear Man: You’re just trying to impress me with the fact that you can read.

 

Dear Woman: Actually, I’m trying to impress you with the fact that I read something and retained enough to have a discussion. Anyway, in this article it said that men and women should appreciate their differences because it grants each of them a “unique perspective.”

 

Dear Man: A unique perspective?

 

Dear Woman: Yeah, that’s what I geared in on too. What does that mean?

 

Dear Man: That means I have a way of looking at things that’s different from you, and you would garner great insight by listening to my feelings on the issue.

 

Dear Woman: Do you think that’s true?

 

Dear Man: I was taught it was true. Matter of fact, I grew up believing that relationships were 50-50. Somewhere along the line, that got pooh-poohed, and now we believe that it’s gotta be 100% and 100%. It’s the me plus me equals us.

 

Dear Woman: We don’t believe that. It’s a war with an unsettling truce. Men pretend that women are smarter while still retaining the power.

 

Dear Man: Well, how do they do that?

 

Dear Woman: By telling you that you have a “unique perspective” which they value hearing and enjoy ignoring.

 

Dear Man: So what you’re saying is that telling someone they have a unique perspective is not a positive?

 

Dear Woman: Absolutely not. It’s never positive. Saying that someone has a unique perspective is only two argument points away from the classic, “We’ll just have to agree to disagree.”

 

Dear Man: So you believe that’s why we have so many stalemates in discussions between men and women?

 

Dear Woman: Yes. Every idea has a genesis and an exodus.

 

Dear Man: Explain.

 

Dear Woman: That wasn’t very clear, was it? What I’m saying is that the word “unique” is a genesis, but as the word “unique” goes through the human experience, it changes to other words. And by the time it evolves, our emotions interpret it in a much different way.

 

Dear Man: So you’re saying that “unique” doesn’t really mean “unique” to us?

 

Dear Woman: Exactly. “Unique” is translated in our brain as “different.” And different is not something we enjoy. It’s something we tolerate. And we always tell people they need more tolerance.

 

Dear Man: So how do you build a relationship on tolerance?

 

Dear Woman: You can’t. You kind of end up faking it.

 

Dear Man: So let me try my hand at it. After “unique” becomes “different” in our heads, “different” can quickly become “alien.” In other words, people from Mexico have different customs than we do, so therefore we view them as aliens.

 

Dear Woman: Very well said. And of course, once something is alien, we stick it in Outer Space. It’s not really allowed past our borders, is it?

 

Dear Man: So if I convince myself that your feelings are unique and therefore different, which makes them alien, it’s very easy for me to turn a deaf ear and view them as intrusive.

 

Dear Woman: Yeah. I’m an intruder on your girl power.

 

Dear Man: And I’m an intruder on your macho.

 

Dear Woman: So we end up tolerating each other to get what we want.

 

Dear Man: And when we don’t want it so much any more, we decide to get rid of the intruder.

 

Dear Woman: So as long as we look at each other as unique, instead of finding common ground, we will focus on the differences, become alien to one another and eventually, in a bit of disgust, consider each other intrusive.

 

Dear Man: It’s kind of funny. Because if either one of us found ourselves stuck in the jungle, we would quickly learn to adapt–find our inner monkey–instead of insisting that the monkeys have a “unique perspective.”

 

Dear Woman: You should never consider yourself a monkey.

 

Dear Man: You know what I’m saying. To survive, we find commonality. To fail, we focus on differences. That’s just life.

 

Dear Woman: Except when it comes to men and women, right? Then we think we’re so damn clever by highlighting the uniqueness.

 

Dear Man: So you don’t think I have any uniqueness?

 

Dear Woman: Yes, I do. But it has nothing to do with you being a woman. It has to do with your experience. Your faith. Your charity. Your hope. Your sense of humor. That’s what makes you fresh to me.

 

Dear Man: So how did it get all screwed up?

 

Dear Woman: I guess the way it always gets screwed up. One night, one member of the sexes didn’t want to listen to the other one, so he or she decided that the other gender was unique, and therefore incomprehensible.

 

Dear Man: So I am going to give you a blessing. You are not unique. You are not different. You are not alien to me. And you are not an intruder. It’s my job to figure out how the culture screwed us up … and how we can get back to the Garden.

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Dear Man/Dear Woman: A Noteworthy Conversation … January 16th, 2016

 Jonathots Daily Blog

(2815)

Dear Man Dear Woman

Dear Man: Do you like M & M’s?

 

Dear Woman: Yeah, I suppose so.

 

Dear Man: What flavor?

 

Dear Woman: I haven’t given it much thought. I guess the red ones.

 

Dear Man: Is that strawberry or cherry?

 

Dear Woman: Like I said, I don’t think about M & Ms much. It’s kind of a kid’s candy. But I guess cherry.

 

Dear Man: There’s only one flavor. Chocolate.

 

Dear Woman: What do you mean?

 

Dear Man: I mean that the candy-coated shell is just a color, not a flavor.

 

Dear Woman: Are you sure?

 

Dear Man: Positive. They were trying to sell chocolate, wanted to find a cute way to do it, so they surrounded it with a candy shell and colorized it.

 

Dear Woman: Wow. I hadn’t thought of that before.

 

Dear Man: I have. Especially recently. You see, that’s what they’ve done to us–men and women.

 

Dear Woman: Turned us into M & M’s?

 

Dear Man: Exactly. We’re really both chocolate. We’re just human beings. 99 percent of our physical makeup is identical. But society comes along and coats us in a candy shell and gives us a color.

 

Dear Woman: So what’s my color?

 

Dear Man: You know. The standard. Pink for me and blue for you. They will also let you be brown. But you’d better not choose yellow, red or even green, or you could be accused of being…well, you know.

 

Dear Woman: Shall we say effeminate? Since it would be completely politically incorrect to say gay? But on the other hand, as a woman you are allowed to be a little bit blue, but if you turned brown, then you would be too macho.

 

Dear Man: Or the politically incorrect term, butch. And even though there’s no validity to the colorations and the candy shell doesn’t produce any flavor, we still live by the colors. And did you know–there are rock and roll bands who insist on having only green M & M’s?

 

Dear Woman: Clever. But what’s your point?

 

Dear Man: I guess my point is, the more we try to designate each other by color, race, religion and gender, the less we realize that we’re all chocolate.

 

Dear Woman: But aren’t some differences a good thing? Isn’t it important for men and women to have unique aspects, to keep the mystery in our romance?

 

Dear Man: I guess if that actually did happen it would be alright. But we use our difference to prove how separate we are–therefore establishing that it’s basically impossible for us to coexist without arguing or fighting. Can I tell you something? You’re a great guy, but you’re not all blue.

 

Dear Woman: What do you mean, I’m not all blue?

 

Dear Man: Well, you’re afraid of spiders. You don’t like to get your hands too dirty. And you don’t sit around drinking beers and watching football all the time.

 

Dear Woman: What’s wrong with that?

 

Dear Man: Nothing–except it adds a little pink to your shell. At least by the standards of our society. They say you’re supposed to be the aggressor and I’m supposed to be the vanquished.

 

Dear Woman: So what color would you say I am?

 

Dear Man: Well, kind of purple. Not a raving lavender–more a mauve.

 

Dear Woman: This is so stupid. And by the way, you’re not all pink. You’re kind of purple, too–because for some reason, you like to check the oil in your own car.

 

Dear Man: You see what I mean? We’re both shades of purple. Even in the M & M world, our candy colors are more alike than different.

 

Dear Woman: So why don’t people recognize this?

 

Dear Man: Because there are billions of dollars to be made by insisting there’s a war between the sexes instead of finding our common flavor.

 

Dear Woman: You really think it’s all about money?

 

Dear Man: “The love of money is the root of all evil.”

 

Dear Woman: Do you think it can change?

 

Dear Man: I think it can, if we put away childish things…like M & M’s.

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Dear Man/Dear Woman: A Noteworthy Conversation … December 26th, 2015

 Jonathots Daily Blog

(2794)

Dear Man Dear Woman

Dear Man,

I do need another choice.

Something between independent and dependent is what I’m looking for. I don’t know about you. Independent sounds stupid. What’s the whole purpose of a relationship then? It also makes me sound bratty.

Dependent, on the other hand… Well, I don’t even know where to start with that.

It just seems to me that what we end up needing makes us needy and then eventually frustrates us because we don’t ever seem to get as much as we need.

 

Dear Woman,

Do you think it’s any different for me? If I don’t act independent, all my friends say I’m pussy whipped. Yet if I become dependent, hang around more often or become interested in something that is deemed “feminine,” my masculinity is in question.

 

Dear Man,

So do you think this is normal?

 

Dear Woman,

Well, if it is normal, it’s pretty unpleasant. You see, I don’t even know if I can use the word “unpleasant.” It challenges my macho. But if I acted macho you’d cry.

 

Dear Man,

Do you think I like to cry? I just started crying when I was a little kid.

 

Dear Woman,

So did I. But somewhere along the line, an adult picked me up and said, “You’re a big boy, now. Be tough. Don’t cry.”

But my eyes still water if I shut my thumb in the door.

 

Dear Man,

So you’re saying you want to cry and you don’t?

 

Dear Woman,

I’m saying I don’t know. There’s so much expected of me that I can’t tell the difference between what is real and what is programmed. For instance, since we’re being honest, I don’t like spiders either.

 

Dear Man,

So why didn’t you say something?

 

Dear Woman,

Because you’re scared of them and it’s my job to come to the rescue and… I don’t know. Slay the damn thing.

 

Dear Man,

Aren’t there guys who don’t mind killing spiders?

 

Dear Woman,

I don’t know because we wouldn’t be allowed to say. I just think that some guys get used to doing it with their hands and other guys grab a tissue, wishing they can use their foot. It just sucks.

 

Dear Man,

So for me, when I’m too independent you look weak. When I’m too dependent, I feel weak.

 

Dear Woman,

And when you’re too independent, I feel like I should be supportive, but I feel left out. And when you’re too dependent, I wonder if I have enough energy, courage and faith to carry the both of us.

 

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Untotaled: Stepping 28 (September 14th, 1966) Cindy Kerns… August 23, 2014

Jonathots Daily Blog

(2330)

(Transcript)

Fat boy, locker room, peer pressure, fear of inadequacy, dirty jokes, girl talk, not enough information.

This was my life on September 14th. I was in search of bragging rights. Very simply, I needed a girlfriend.

Even though I was just a kid, I had reached an age where if I didn’t get some experience with the girl crowd very soon, I would be considered queer in every way.

So I picked Cindy Kerns. She was a year older than me, from another school and attended my church. The best way to describe her is to tell you that her mother called her a “flower.” The pastor’s wife referred to her as a “late bloomer.” But I knew the guys on my football team would think she was stink weed.

(All the terms have a botanical source, but certainly different interpretations.)

I knew I could get Cindy interested in me. I was no expert with girls, but because she followed me around and swooned a little bit when I was present, I figured she was interested. She was sweet.

So here was my plan: make my boast after showering, tell them about Cindy, and then acquire a picture from Cindy of one of her other friends from school–a cheerleader–which I could show to my friends instead of the real picture of my actual girlfriend. Then I could make lots of claims and look cool.

Amazingly enough, it came off without a hitch.

I don’t know why Cindy didn’t get suspicious about me requesting pictures of other girls from her school. I guess she just thought I was interested in her friends. She only asked for one picture–mine.

It made me feel bad, but not as bad as I would feel if I had to show my friends a picture of Cindy instead of some unknown beauty from down the road.

Once football season was over and I didn’t have to deal with these guys with their macho jargon on an everyday basis, I dumped Cindy.

But in that brief two-and-a-half month period, I grew to like her. I learned when to kiss, how to kiss and things to say to a woman at just the right times.

Adolescence is a terrible time to try to be a human being. In an attempt to become something that you probably will never be, you can really hurt other people from becoming what they could be.

So I would like to apologize to Cindy (who I am sure by now wouldn’t even remember who I am). And I would also like to apologize to the girl whose picture I used to impress my friends.

After all, it’s unfair to carry on a relationship with a stranger by photograph.

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The Sermon on the Mount in music and story. Click the mountain!

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Click here to get info on the "Gospel According to Common Sense" Tour

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Untotaled: Stepping 24 (August 17th, 1965) Walleye… July 26, 2014

 Jonathots Daily Blog

(2303)

(Transcript)

There once was a young man named Jonathan who somewhat resembled me.

He was old enough to think but too old to be cute and thought about very much. His mother was busy and his dad a trifle old–and everything Jonathan really enjoyed was not appreciated by anybody else in his abode.

His dad and brothers favored hunting and fishing. It made them feel macho. Jonathan, on the other hand, was more “couch-o.”

But he was still willing to try.

He took the gun thrust into his hands and went out to chase rabbits. He liked shooting, but couldn’t hit any of the fuzzy bunnies.

The male members of the herd were greatly disappointed. A “stalefate.”

One sunny afternoon, he walked with a pole to the city reservoir to fish. An hour passed. Then two. Yet all at once, he had a bite on his hook. He pulled in the biggest fish he had ever conceived.

He ran home with his prize, stopping along the way to pant and catch his breath.

Jonathan’s dad was thrilled. He told Jonathan that he had caught a walleye–one and one-half pounds. The father was so impressed.

Then an hour later the newspaper showed up to get the whole story and take a picture. It was in the next week’s edition.

For a full three days following the print-out, Jonathan was small-town famous–the young man who had bagged a reservoir walleye.

For a while his dad was proud. No doubt about it.

It felt good.

 

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Arizona morning

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Published in: on July 26, 2014 at 1:14 pm  Comments (1)  
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Jesonian: Show Me the Father … June 15, 2014

Jonathots Daily Blog

(2264)

Jesus talking to a discipleAnd Phillip said to Jesus, “Show us the Father and it will be enough for us.”

Jesus said, “Phillip, don’t you realize after all these years of traveling together, that my goal has been to not only show you the Father but to be a good Father.”

Because a good father gives his children permission to be happy. He gives them a path to happiness. And he walks them to the door.

Even when they feel poor in spirit, he tells them that they can survive the tough times.

Don’t be afraid to cry, says a good father. I’ll be there to comfort you.

And by the way, be meek. You don’t have to be mean to get what you want.

But it’s very important to get an appetite for life, because if you’re hungry and thirsty, you will be filled.

A good father shows mercy because he knows it’s the only way to get mercy.

“Son, don’t be macho. And my daughter, please don’t use your feminine wiles. Have a pure heart. Be prepared to feel.”

Make peace. Ignore trouble makers. It may sound simple, but where you find peace, you find God.

You will be beaten, but you don’t have to lose. You will be attacked but defeat is unnecessary.

You will be humiliated and mocked. Do yourself a favor–let it go.

For my son and my daughter, I am your father. What you’ve seen me do, make it your own. And in the end, we can rejoice and be exceedingly glad … together.

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Arizona morning

After an appearance earlier this year in Surprise, Arizona, Janet and I were blessed to receive a “surprise” ourselves. Click on the beautiful Arizona picture above to share it with us!

Click here to get info on the "Gospel According to Common Sense" Tour

Click here to get info on the “Gospel According to Common Sense” Tour

Please contact Jonathan’s agent, Jackie Barnett, at (615) 481-1474, for information about scheduling SpiriTed in 2014.

Click here to listen to Spirited music

Click here to listen to Spirited music

 

 

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