Sit Down Comedy … January 18th, 2019

Jonathots Daily Blog

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Sometime back, but still in my retainable memory, I was invited to speak at a youth convention.

It started out slow, as those kinds of gigs often do until the audience realizes you are acceptable and hearable. It ended beautifully, with enthusiasm, passion and even a few tears. I was feeling so inspired that I turned to the gathered and said, “God, you guys look great.”

Afterward, I was greeted by the sponsor of the event, who seemed to lack my joy. He shared that he was greatly uplifted by the message I imparted to the students, but found the use of the word “God” in my closing to be a classic case of using the Lord’s name in vain.

OMG.

Move ahead a little while and it is such a common phrase that we have an Internet abbreviation for it.

I ran across the same problem over the years when I appeared in front of pristine-thinking audiences, using the word “crap.” Once again, move ahead, and I’ve even heard “crap” used in prayers: “Lord, save us from all this crap.”

We get nowhere with language by thinking that certain words are perverse, others are acceptable and a chosen few are supreme.

Let me give you an example:

I have a bottom. I don’t call it a bottom very often, because the occasion to use that word doesn’t arise, and I don’t feel the need to ever be that formal. So instead, I may say, “I’m going to sit on my backside.”

That’s about as vanilla as I can get. I refuse to use the word “tush.” Sometimes when I’m trying to motivate myself, I will say, “I got off my butt and finished dinner.” (“Butt” in this case is required to express to the hearer that a process was necessary to change my stationary position to an active one.)

I would never say, “I got off my derriere and finished dinner.”

Moving along, if I were referring to a woman’s attractive backside today, I might call it a “booty,” only to be playful. But I don’t think I would get the same reaction from her or anyone else by saying, “She certainly has an attractive gluteus maximus.”

Words justify us—meaning they make us come across clearly—or they condemn us—causing us to sound foul or overly cautious.

I have to be honest with you—if I were discussing the government of the United States in its present stand-off, I would certainly put forth this sentence: “The government should get off its ass and fix some things.”

I wouldn’t use “bottom” and I wouldn’t use “butt.” In this case, the word “ass” has a double meaning. It refers both to their languishing position as well as their attitudes, which prevent them from being proactive.

Do you see what I mean?

We need to stop this foolish, politically correct mindset regarding the American language. If a word communicates, it communicates.

For instance, I never say, “I’m going to have a bowel movement,” but I might say, “The baby did a poop.”

If I run across something that’s plain bull, I will call it crap.

If someone is being mistreated and bigotry is being fostered, I might spout, “What the shit is going on?”

If you feel that I should say, “What the potty is going on?” I think you’re either being insincere or you should find a time machine and join us here in the twenty-first century.

Stop looking for whether words are perverse, righteous, foul or sacred. Start noticing how they fit into sentences or questions that communicate the depth of our passion.


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Salient…June 25th, 2018

 Jonathots Daily Blog

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There are matters that are too important to ignore or leave to chance. These are salient moments.

Shall we take a look at a fascinating window of time that occurs in all human beings, from birth to about five years of age? Each one of us is so vulnerable, so needy, so inquisitive and so desperate that we are prepared to be taught to be Earth-dwellers by our parents. Sometimes this extends all the way up to age ten.

Three very intricate systems are introduced: manners, morals and motivation.

This is the period when we develop our ethics–perhaps a work ethic or a social one, but certainly a mental gear we adopt to deal with life and with others.

Most generally this instruction is completed by age eleven, because here comes puberty. For the average parent puberty can be best defined as this: “My children have lost their hearing in favor of their genitals.”

It is difficult to provide additional instruction during this period. Sometimes after a serious error, there will be a brief season of curiosity from the adolescent, but then the trio of temptation, taunting and teasing pulls them right back into the melee of mayhem.

This lasts until about age twenty-five. (Of course, it could be twenty-two, or thirty, depending on the person. But for the sake of this brief essay, I shall characterize it as twenty-five.)

At twenty-five young folks wake up–sometimes after a hangover or after getting their first threatening letter from a bill collector for their student loans, or perhaps realizing they might be in love.

A realization strikes: “Maybe me, an individual, could become us, a family.”

So three new friends show up to invigorate manners, morals and motivation. They are concern, confidence and clever.

We, as humans, develop a legitimate concern for others while building confidence and finding clever ways to use what we have more expansively.

It is a massive transition–a needful one. Without it, many young persons never become actual adults at all, but linger around their families, particularly their parents, coming back for another schooling in morals, manners and motivation.

This concern, confidence and clever births some children, buys a house, acquires job promotions and takes us, as people, to about the age of fifty. (Once again, this could be younger or a little older.)

At fifty, having tapped the fruit of concern, confidence and clever, people want more. There is a wrinkle in the spirit of human beings which causes them to wistfully wish to make a difference and leave behind a legacy.

It is at this point that we pursue wit, words and wisdom. It carries us through to our dying breath.

Yet we certainly know individuals in their seventies who have never escaped concern, confidence and clever–or maybe never even learned morals, manners and motivation.

This is a passage. All human passages are entered only through the power of repentance.

So here is your salient moment:

Gather up all your manners, morals and motivation, and stir in your concern, confidence and cleverness. And if you have reached the age, add on your wit, words and wisdom.

Finish the job.

Of course, if you’re led of the Spirit and you’re a creature who knows how to use faith, you don’t have to wait for birthdays to dictate your future.

As the Good Book says, “today is the day of salvation.”

 

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Quatrain of the Dog and Cat … May 28, 2013

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cat and dog

(Meow) Meow. Meow? Meow!

Ruff! Ruff? Ruff. (Ruff)

Different but the same.

NoOne learns the words.

 

 

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