Sit Down Comedy … March 20th, 2020

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Sit Down Comedy

The natural order did not feel that plaguing us with a Presidential election was enough. Apparently, what was needed was a virus, which has scared us all into our corners to ruminate. I don’t know about you, but I have found that rumination is a skill that demands tremendous effort, patience and a certain degree of intelligence.

So it will be difficult to assess how long we will all be able to sustain our positions—until, like all creatures great and small, we try to fight our way free because we’ve been cornered.

I rely on a practice which I’ve used daily for many years. It seems on point for this situation. I call it:

“The Ten Questions I Ask Myself Every Day.”

Honestly, on some occasions, I don’t spend much time musing over them. But I do have them written down, and I do take the space to respect the exercise, and at least afford some sort of answer.

I thought you might be interested in them, and if you aren’t, this is an excellent place to stop reading.

****

1.Why in the hell are you so afraid?

(Remember, I’m asking myself.)

Fear is one of those luxuries we afford ourselves, even though we know it has no value. After all, there are rumors that individuals have been scared to death, but never any reports of humans being scared to life.

2. Can you identify your prejudice?

This forces me to admit that I am still prejudiced, even though I’ve worked on it. But since my upbringing was mostly out of my control until my late teens, I accumulated a lot of misinformation that still needs to be rummaged through and placed in the garbage heap.

3. Can you work on your diet without cheating?

I’m a big, fat boy, so I am constantly dieting. But even if I were slender, I would still have to work on my diet to ensure I maintain my nutrition, so I could use my vitamins and minerals to fight off…viruses.

But can I do what I do without cheating? And by cheating, I mean making promises to myself that I know I will not keep.

4. Can you stop lying?

Of course I can.

Actually, when you boil down the hours, minutes and seconds it takes to maintain a life of lies, it is much more time-intensive to be a deceiver than a truth-teller. I guess the question is, can I finally convince myself that I’m always going to get caught in my lie.

5. Can you slow down without stopping?

I know this sounds a little weird, but often we feel we have two gears: a dead stop or a deadly speed. Sometimes it’s good to know how to do a little less but still make it look like it’s the same amount. It’s in the slow-downed times that we discover the things that are worth speeding up for.

6. Can you consider multiplying your talents?

The deadliest words that can come off anybody’s lips are, “I don’t have any talent.”

We all do. It’s just the difference between having a single stick and two sticks. One stick is usually a weapon. Two sticks can be rubbed together to make a fire.

Can I take my abilities to make more abilities, so I will have the ability to survive?

7. Are you always attempting to maintain good cheer?

It’s important to know what good cheer is. It’s not a facial expression, nor a giggle, nor a spate of silliness. Good cheer is honestly knowing that fear and bitching will get you nowhere. So you might as well manufacture a better outlook.

8. Can you avoid arguing with people and just live out your heart?

We argue because we want people to approve us.

I’m not going to argue with you. I know what’s in my heart. I know it’s not going to hurt anybody, and I have a pretty good idea how to live it out.

9. What does love look like today?

Love looks different every single day. Sometimes it’s stealing kisses. Other times it’s giving space. Frequently, it’s quietly respecting without inserting an opinion. And on occasion, it’s intervening.

Wisdom is knowing which love to use today.

10. And finally, did you murder, blame and shame?

I become completely useless when I blame the world around me for my circumstances. And I topple from useless into despair when I take all the shame upon myself.

I don’t care who’s to blame.

And I will not allow you to place the shame on me.

***

Now, I realize this is a lot of questions.

But the answers don’t have to be long, and when you finish, you will find yourself thoughtful.

And it is my experience that thoughtful never hurt anyone.

Thoughtless is the culprit.

 

 

3 Things … February 6th, 2020

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You Need to Know About Black History Month

1.  It makes white people feel “R-E-A-L white.” Look what we did.

 

2.  Skin color doesn’t do shit—people do.

 

3.  It’s all American history.

 

1 Thing You Can Do to Gain the Lasting Respect of Others

Be Straight

Stop trying to make the facts conform to your conviction.

Don’t merely pull out statistics to support your assertion.

Don’t quote the scriptures to confirm your theology.

And stop smirking because you’re convinced that the word “straight” cannot be used for anything other than the opposite of “gay.”

Come with me and we’ll practice:

Abortion kills something.

Religion has very little to do with faith.

Brain injuries are horrible and shouldn’t be marginalized.

The founding fathers warned against religion as much as they praised it.

Guns don’t control themselves.

North Korea is not a Superpower.

Climate change is real enough that we need to get real about it.

Drugs are dangerous—all drugs.

Poverty will not go away. Do what you can.

Wealth is all in who has it.

As far as gender, it does take two to make one.

Concerning race, no one is better than anyone else.

The truth is not here to confirm your theory, politics, theology or prejudice.

The truth is here to free us from stupidity.

The B. S. M. G. Report


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Overcoming the weak in my week,

I have sought what to seek

BAD

There’s nothing to be achieved by the impeachment of Donald J. Trump.

This is not a statement on his innocence or guilt, but rather, the acknowledgement that such an endeavor is beyond us during this time with the unfolding calendar of the United States of America.

The country is weary–its citizens exhausted.

There is too much to discern to maintain any will to continue to reason.

In less than a year, an election proposed by our constitution, will settle the matter.

Although there are those who insist “an awful lot can happen in a year,” or that they wish to “nail the lid” on a coffin that has already been constructed, I contend that the deed is too costly for what might be guaranteed.

For you see, as a young man I purchased an old, green, Bell Telephone van. It was pukey. But the ugliest part of it was the carpet inside, which ran from steering wheel to back door.

I hated it. It was greasy, grimy, stained and filthy. Anyone who got into my van and saw the floor was surely convinced that I was a no-good slob.

One day I took it upon myself to get rid of that damn carpet.

I will tell you—it had been placed in the van with a notion to keep it there until Jesus had his welcome-back party. I cut, I pulled, I tore and I ripped. I probably got a lifetime of carpet fibers and asbestos up my nose.

After about three hours, I finally ripped up the last piece of carpet, though little portions stubbornly remained.

The underneath floor was just as putrid, requiring me to immediately get another carpet put in.

When I arrived at the back door of the carpet store, where I had been promised free c arpet from left-over jobs, the manager looked in my van and said, “Why’d you tear the old carpet out? You should have shampooed it and then put new carpet on top.”

Here are the facts:

Whether you’re a MAGA enthusiast for the President or you believe he’s the anti-Christ, he was duly elected and is part of our bizarre American history.

If you want him gone, wait for the next election.

Clean him out of Washington.

And lay down a new layer of carpet.

Because impeaching is like tearing out carpet—it’s a helluva project and will leave you with a bigger job at the end.

SAD

Sitting in my chair watching television, I teared up.

Maybe I’m an emotional fool, but sometimes I cry because I realize the great potential and am inundated with the present reality.

As I watched, person after person after show after news broadcast conveyed one message:

“You can’t trust anyone.”

Sometimes it was said sadly, sometimes communicated in anger. But in all cases, it was a definitive proclamation that trusting humans is not only foolish but dangerous.

Yet it will certainly be difficult to solve problems when the people we need to help us have become our enemies.

MAD

I don’t want to be a whiner.

I don’t want to be one of those kinds of guys who bitches about things and refuses to leave well enough alone.

And even though I have an abiding joy in watching college football, I am greatly disturbed at how it is gradually becoming America’s modern-day slave market.

57% of the college football athletes are black.

That is compared to 13% of the general population being that color.

Only 2.8% of the students on campuses are African American.

But 70% of the fan base of college football is Caucasian.

On top of that, sports announcers have begun to discuss the athletes as if they’re specimens instead of human beings.

  • “He has a huge, massive chest.”
  • “Look at his rock-hard abs.”
  • “He has thighs twice the size of a normal boy his age.”
  • “He looks like Adonis.”

At first hearing, you might think these are compliments, but actually they are observations—the same kinds of asides spoken by slave-traders as they walked among the young black men, stolen and brought over from Africa.

Granted, some of these young men may be headed for the National Football League, to make much money, unlike their unfortunate ancestors. But this does not rationalize the attitudes, terminology and carelessness with which these human beings are regarded.

Meanwhile, not many people are concerned about their education, integration into human life or even their communication skills.

It is racist.

It may be a gentle racism, or even an entertaining one—but it is racist.

Let’s not get rid of college football, but please—let us cease and desist with the plantation talk.

GLAD

There are three outstanding statements that must be honored for the human race to continue to run well.

1. All humans are created equal.

2. In the kingdom of God, there is neither male nor female.

3. Don’t judge unless you want to be judged.

Every time one, two or dare I say, all three of these, link up to form a circle of understanding, my soul rejoices.

So when “Black Lives Matters” arrived along with the “Me Too Movement,” complete with a new awakening of patriotism in this nation, I didn’t see campaigns at war with one another.

We are gradually beginning to grasp that these ideas, along with many others scattered out there, are like the yarn of understanding that must be knit together, to help us endorse our equality, our genders uniting, and the removal of prejudice.

May they create the circle of understanding that is unbroken.

Sit Down Comedy … August 2nd, 2019

Jonathots Daily Blog

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Hurling insults.

It may be the only exercise that many folks are getting.

We’ve become very concerned about being offended, yet are we becoming more offensive ourselves?

An interesting question.

One of the favorite insults is accusing one another of being racist. I think we must understand the path of intolerance. It begins with”

Prejudice

“I have an idea that I hold to be true.”

Opinion

“That idea has become my foundational thought.”

Bigotry

“I believe my idea is so good that I am prepared, willing and in the midst of sharing it with others.”

Racist

“I am convinced that my idea is supported by both nature and God, and therefore means that I must enforce it, alienating some group of people.”

As you see, it’s not easy to be a racist—and no one who is truly a racist is ashamed to admit it. They are loud and proud.

I think what each one of us needs to do instead of hurling insults is take a look at where prejudice tries to wiggle its way into our lives.

There are four encounters which give us the opportunity to use our speech in different ways if we so choose—or arrive at a unity of one voice.

First there’s Platter Chatter

These are the conversations we have with friends and family over dinner or during fellowship.

Next, the Pew View

These are the scriptures, sermons and ideas promoted by our particular religious organization.

Third is the Work Week Speak

I’m referring to the “around the cooler talk,” which sometimes is not cooler. It can actually be hotter.

And finally, the Walk Talk

This is a social environment with people we do not know, so we must be cautious in sharing our ideas and beliefs in front of them.

Is your conversation more prejudiced during Platter Chatter with your family? Does your church have a view of lifestyles that disincludes some people from salvation based on their choices? How about the bigoted jokes spoken at work? Can you refrain from laughing loudly, and in so doing communicate your disdain? Or must you object? And what is the profile of your interchanges around strangers?

In trying to figure out the amount of racism you have in your life, you have to concentrate on whether bigotry has found a home inside you—whether somehow or another you’ve formed your own personal opinion based upon a prejudice that has lingered in your mind.

So ask yourself:

Is your Platter Chatter, Pew View, Work Week Speak and Walk Talk all the same? Or do you allow a little more opinion, prejudice and maybe even bigotry to appear in certain environments, which you don’t permit in others?

It’s a great way to analyze your situation, and it also makes you a bit more cautious about slinging the term “racist” around.

It’s something to ponder.

Of course, there always is the choice of going for a long walk instead of hurling insults.

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The X Word … July 16th, 2019

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THE

Image result for gif of the letter x

WORD


It is my belief that all the people of the United States owe a brief moment of gratitude to President Donald Trump, for he spared us another administration of Hillary and Bill Clinton. When they were in the White House, they brought disgrace, confusion, deception and a certain brand of conceit that has troubled us for years.

The American people looked at the binary choice and selected the unknown.

It was a smart move.

In that moment, it seemed a prudent way to avoid many of the mistakes that were made by the Arkansas couple the first time they were bequeathed the honor of occupying the nation’s house at Pennsylvania Avenue.

Yet, President Trump was a novice.

We have all been novices. We immediately had to accept two important factors:

  1. Not knowing what to do, we were required to learn.
  2. Since we were learning, mistakes would have to be confessed and changed.

The novice we elected took a profile of already knowing instead of studying up for the job. The end result is that errors were made, and rather than correcting those mistakes, smoke screens were sent out to disguise the mishaps, and attempts were made to rally “we, the people” behind nasty causes.

That is why I tell you that the X word that should never be spoken or written again is:

XENOPHOBIA

It is a prejudice against people from other countries, but also other lifestyles. It is fostered because of insecurity.

For instance, there isn’t a black person in this country who isn’t a little nervous around the white folks who have caused him or her problems.

There isn’t a Native American who can’t point to mistreatment of his tribe by the immigrants who came from other lands.

Nor is there a Japanese American who is unaware that at one time, his great-grandfather or great-grandmother were put into an internment camp.

The Chinese Americans recall the history of how they were mistreated in the West during the great expansion of the nineteenth century.

And also, every white person in this country is a little sensitive about being cast into the role of the villain on all issues of race.

We are neurotic.

Somewhere deep in our soul is the desire to be kind and tenderhearted, but a fear of one another manifests as a hatred of each other. So when the drums of prejudice start beating, the accusations start flying, the bullets pierce black flesh at white hands, and the nation seems to look on those south of the border as trash, it is time for our leaders to calm us.

They should teach us to appreciate one another. Give us a chance to get used to skin colors and lifestyles, and acclimate to our neighbors. After all, we have an absolutely magnificent country in which to do it.

I say, shame on our political parties.

Shame on the Democratic Party for presenting Hillary Clinton with a side of her husband, Bill, as warmed-over hash.

And shame on the Republicans for failing to take their candidate and place him in adequate restraints for learning and growing into the job of President.

Both parties have turned us into raging xenophobes.

This will not be solved with a political solution. This will require the simplicity of neighbors chatting with each other and gradually coming to a national common sense that acknowledges that even though we are nervous—at times terrified—of the person standing next to us, America is still the best spot to be, this side of heaven.

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Sit Down Comedy … July 12th, 2019

Jonathots Daily Blog

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Paralyzed by the immobility of a weary exasperation, I pause, waiting for the Senate of Sitters, the House of Misrepresentation, the President of Whim and the Court of Supreme Confusion to hatch a single egg of an idea from their coop of chickens.

I would suggest that it’s time for each of us to step up and become the solution before we are drug into the quicksand of indecision and suffocated by lameness.

So therefore, may I suggest the following mission statement:

A lways

B elieving in the persistent power of goodness

C oncerned

D eeply in our portion of the responsibility of carrying the banner of possibility, we

E ffectively craft a plan of action which has historical awareness, future vision and a great sensitivity to the present need.

F inding reasons to agree, similarities among us all

G iving us a common joy which beckons an uncommon strength to tackle our problems, while

H aving respect for one another and reverence for great ideals,

I join with you to form US, which is the “we, the people” who are in pursuit of a more perfect union.

J ustice is our mind, creativity our heart and mercy our soul.

K indly we enjoin.

L osing the fickle identity of political parties, we

M ingle.

N aturally becoming the melting pot of cultures that we have advertised ourselves to be,

O ur hope is an equality that lends itself to equity—

P ure of heart, to find the divine within us.

Q uiet in ignorance,

R allying toward learning who we are together, we

S urvive to expand what we know without shame over our lacking, for

T ruth is submission to the next well-proven revelation. We

U nite with each other in our hunger and thirst for what is better. Indeed,

V ictory is sweeter when celebrated by all, and

W inning, more peaceful when there are fewer losers.

X marks the spot where there is an atmosphere wherein

Y ou and I, once and for all, are able to look one another in the eye without fear or prejudice—to go out every single day and be:

Z ealously affected by a good thing.


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