A difficult subject, this thing called self-discipline. It’s not about what you do, but what you choose not to do. There’s power in self-discipline. To say no, to take a stand, to work beyond your perceived capacity, to deny instant gratification—those are wow moments. Self-discipline negates weakness, leaves behind a sense of well-being—not a behind of greater proportion. It offers peace of mind instead of a sense of failure. It offers pleasure, too. More pleasure than the high of sugar or the self-prescribed drug of choice. The pleasure of a job well done, accomplishment, wearing a pair of pants your body is supposed to fit in, money saved instead of wasted on cigarettes, the completion of a task that is important for you or others. Master over your own mind. Self-discipline…a good thing. Writer’s live by it…so on to the next day of this A-Z challenge..gotta do it…gotta do it…. What’s your S word?
Heavy words in the R category: respect, responsibility, religion, rules, rumors, ridicule. But my finger landed on right.
Funny word, right is. I can turn right, live right, right a wrong. I can give up a right or I can allow you a right. I can in some circumstances take away your right. I wish could write right so I wouldn’t sit here and wonder if I wrote the right word or not. Right doesn’t come easy. Sometimes you have to work for it even if it is a constitutional right. Sometimes you have to fight for it even if it’s an inalienable right. Left and right may be at odds over rights and sometimes rights can be wrongs. Thus so, Robert Frost said ‘I hold it to be the inalienable right of anybody to go to hell in his own way’. Right now, I’m pleased most of my rights have not been trampled on. Guess it’s because I live in the right country, in the right time and place, for all the right reasons. I’ll leave you with this thought: “The greatest right in the world is the right to be wrong.” The credit goes to Harry Weinberger, born in 1888, written in “The First Casualties in War.” Around 1917. Fits the day, doesn’t it?
I love quotations. They make me laugh, cry, ponder and try harder to understand the meaning. Some are simple, like: “Quotation confesses inferiority.” Now that can’t be much sharper, clear, right? Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote that one. I don’t know how many times I’ll use it in my writing but, I will remember Ralph Waldo’s pithy remark. I like better what George Bernard Shaw thought about quotes. Shaw said, “I often quote myself; it adds spice to the conversation.” Damn right. Usually a quote takes me back to my thoughts; agree or disagree. If I agree with myself, what could be better? So this is my quote for the day: “Do as much as you can possibly do to please yourself but, if you leave the please out of your relationship with others, you won’t be as happy.” Not bad….rubs off of a lot of other notable quotes. So repeat my quote if you wish. Ralph Waldo also said, “By necessity, by proclivity and by delight, we all quote.” Thanks Ralph, for setting the record straight.
I do like a puzzle…on a rainy day, when I just can’t get into a book. Puzzles are especially rewarding when there’s 50 or so pieces left. But a tricky one can humble you. How can something so trite, inconsequential make you ponder for hours? A picture printed on cardboard, cut into hundreds of pieces. Senseless. A puzzle, perhaps, is a paradox. To do nothing of importance and be at peace is possibly the essence of everything important.
What’s your P…..word…..
Previous Letters: L is for Law, M is for Men, N is for No, O is for Optimistic. All on my facebook.
For my followers…it was fun to write about the L word yesterday. I didn’t miss the order of things, I posted it on Facebook. I will repost when I don’t feel like the day has got the best of me. N…is the next letter….will brew on that while I sleep.
M…..tons of word options. Why pick the word Men?–Tons of options. 6 Billion people in the world; about 49% men, at least at birth. What is so special about men? One man for a woman to spend her entire life with? Beats the hell out of me why we settle for one. But then men might say the same thing about women. 51% of the population—why put up with one when there are so many to choose from? Not going there. Just sticking with men.
Here’s the thing about men—they sure get a bad wrap. Women beat the hell out of men, whine about them, complain, want miracles from them and humiliate them with jokes, gestures and expectations. Men go to war, lose there identities in mundane jobs as truck drivers, riding rails, as policemen, firemen, ditch diggers, high wire climbers, road builders. They move mountains—for women. Sure-doctors, lawyers, professors do the same thing–work their butts off for women, their family. Yet, the jokes, the finger wagging is all about bad men. Those who aren’t sensitive, attentive, wife like. The men who survive, win out, gain notoriety from women are men who turn out to be good fathers as determined by the women they live with. Doesn’t matter what else they accomplish or sacrifice. Men who are great dads are the best kind of men. The others—good, bad, indifferent. Why?
Sure, there are a shit load of bad men roaming the world–can’t argue the obvious. But can’t we celebrate the other side of obvious? Why do women try to transform, negate, disenfranchise the nature of good men? Is it fair to expect men to think, feel or act like a woman? Okay, perhaps if you’re in a homosexual relationship but even then, who gets bashed the most—the men. Why can’t men be different than women? Let their traits, their biological nature prevail. Men and women are unequal in many ways. Let it be. Accept the difference, the innate, emotional difference. Celebrate Men…
Kneecaps. Come in twos….like a lot of body parts. But kneecaps don’t cause trouble unless they are abused by the owner. Kneecaps are a stabilizing force…can tell more about you than a lot of other twosome parts. Can you imagine a world where you were assessed/judged by your kneecaps? No more weighing in at the doc’s office, no more sexually harassing insults, no more…..what? Here’s a couple of thoughts that popped up during the night when I pondered the letter K. ‘Look at her–she’s got a great set of kneecaps’. Or ‘boy, he sure has got kneecaps’. Think about it–see how simple, stress free life would be if we concentrated on those anatomical wonders instead of beauteous tatas or a set of masculine meatballs. Kneecaps tell more about you than other body parts. Kneecaps tell you where you’ve been or where you’re going. Kneecaps can show if you’ve been lax on diet or exercise, essentially if you’ve been good to yourself. Kneecaps can be covered or exposed and not cause riots or sneers. Kneecaps keep you centered. I’m purposing we all concentrate on kneecaps, make a fuss about them, take them to heart—compliment or critique these two glorious structures in body beautiful. Keep kneecaps at the top of your list–take your eyes off the obvious and change the world! Really—-
People get a little squirrely when it comes to judgement. Oh, you shouldn’t judge others. Or, don’t judge a book by its cover. Or don’t be so judgmental. Or don’t judge someone until you’ve walked in their shoes. Now that’s a tough one….she’s a size nine, I’m only a six. Different for sure. But here’s the rub….people do judge, are judgmental, and no matter the issue, will continue to judge. If they don’t, they are utter fools. Could be sleeping with Jeffery Dalmer’s look alike if you didn’t judge. Then there are some who just lie about judging. When someone says ‘don’t judge so and so for such and such’…isn’t that being judgmental? It’s still suggesting, inferring that you know better than the the other person what they should or shouldn’t think and do. So, if you think about judgement…..it takes layers of judgement, decision to get along in life: to maintain a friendship, a partnership–business or marriage, to help a stranger, break a rule, engage in certain activities, support someone’s lifestyle. Sometimes, you judge and the ruling is you don’t want any of the above. It’s fair game to judge when you seek a service–plumber, grocery store, need a hair cut. Etc, etc….and when it comes to people and personal issues…well, if we didn’t judge, we’d all have our shoulders tied to strings and someone over our head would control every action. Get my drift. So here’s what Samuel Johnson (1709-1784) said about Judgement: “Judgement is, to estimate things at their true value.” I like that. Works for me when I’m pondering a point of concern or interest. And here’s another guy’s thoughts on the art of Judgement: Richard Sheridan, 1751-1816, “The number of those who go thro’ the fatigue of judging for themselves is very small indeed!” Now ain’t that the truth! Brainwashed …a lot of us. Mindlessly swayed by media hype or lost in our own shortsighted incidents where emotions rule and judgement about the essence of life without consequences gets thrown out with the bath water. Can’t hurt to get back on track, though, and judge for yourself. Take a stand, know what you stand for. Like Judge Judy…..listen, observe and strike the gavel. Senses may or may not deceive you, but judgement—well, it might be your best friend. Jury in…off to jail…or not…
I’m not smart enough to figure out the essence of intelligence but here’s a good thought by a note worthy fellow: “The test of intelligence is not how much we know how to do but how we behave when we don’t know what to do.” That’s John Holt’s (1923-1985) comment about the I subject. For sure, John, right on! I know to put out a fire when I see flames. Do you think he ever said, ‘if I’d only known’ and then ran like hell to get out of trouble? That, to me, seems pretty smart. Anyhow, somewhere along this rocky road of acquiring ‘intelligence’, small pebbles for me at that, I figured out the more I read, the smarter I felt. Feeling good counts for something, right? However, what difference does it make, though, if indeed I’m smarter after reading a good book, a dozen books? For qualifiers, no one has ever told me my IQ or asked for that specific number in a job interview. In fact, I don’t want to know mine or yours, either. Intelligence, it seems, isn’t something that serves a good purpose unless your in the habit of serving a good purposes. Ralph Waldo Emerson said it much more eloquently: “Intelligence–yes, but of what kind and aim? There is the intelligence of Socrates, and the intelligence of a thief or a forger.” Aren’t we all glad he didn’t say ‘or politicians’? Oh, Ralph, you are so intelligent! By the way, he’s not a relative of mine. (We share the same surname.) I wish he was then maybe some of his intelligence would have got through the filter of my gene pool. But let’s get back to John Holt. He finished his weighty thesis with the following: “Any situation, any activity, that puts before us real problems, that we have to solve for ourselves, problems for which there are no answers in any book, sharpens our intelligence.” Wow…I can relate to that. Time to get off my duff and fix that leaky toilet.
H….the letter leaves me giggling. Hilarious. My first thought was to go for Hilary….ah, but then I wouldn’t be laughing. Serious subject there…and since it’s raining buckets today, I need big yucks, belly whoppers, knee slappers. Not a politician that too often makes me cringe. Okay, women friends, I know you want a woman as president but…really…shouldn’t we have a person who is the best possible choice for the job? Granted, we never know if we’re getting a winner until the chosen one gets that 3 o’clock in the a.m. call. And four or eight years is a long time to suffer through amateurish mistakes. Been there, done that. Oh well, back to hilarious…Did I tell you what my buddy Will Rogers said? “There’s no trick to being a humorist when you have the whole government working for you.” Okay, it’s not a knee slapper, maybe not even hilarious but it’s a good joke. I looked for hilarious jokes and couldn’t find any. Many about blondes—politically incorrect, then about religion—politically incorrect, then even looked for Hillary jokes but they were mostly about Bill, the real jokester. Darn, I’m not getting my yucks, my belly whoppers. And the rain keeps coming. Better settle for a Knock Knock joke:
Knock Knock Who’s There? Armenia. Armenia Who? Armenia every word I say?Hiliarious——