’22 A To Z Challenge – G

 

 

 

 

 

 

I dropped a bag of Scrabble tiles, and picked up seven of them at random.  They spelled out

GLUDDER

Is that a real word??
Not only is it a real word, it is a Scottish word.  Like the multiple meanings of Flag in the last A to Z post, my thrifty Scots ancestors wanted to get as much out of a word as possible.

The way to tell an Englishman, an Irishman, and a Scotsman in a bar pub, is to serve them a drink with a fly in it.  The Englishman will push the drink away, and order another.  The Irishman will shrug, dip the fly out, and consume the drink.  The Scotsman will dip out the fly, give it a bit of a squeeze, and shout, “Come on, give it up, ya wee sot!”  Hell, he’d probably down the Englishman’s first, if he could get away with it.  Which drunkenly brings us to the many meanings of a word which sounds like it was coined after several drams of Glen Fiddich in the local.

If you are north of Hadrian’s Wall, the word Gludder can, and still does, mean
a glow of heat from the sun;
a bright and warm period of sunshine between rain showers;
the sound of a body falling into the mire;
to do dirty work or work in a dirty manner;
to swallow food in a slovenly or disgusting way.

Scotland has never been the entertainment and excitement capital of the world.  My Ancestors had to have something to do besides count all their sheep, because they kept dozing off.  They tried tossing large rocks across the frozen surface of ponds and rivers, and invented curling.  They practiced knocking smaller stones into gopher holes with their walking sticks, and invented golf, which is just flog, spelled backwards.  Some time before they were forced to go home to the Missus at closing time, they dreamed up words like gludder.  May the banks and braes forgive them.  😳

Parents Of Kids Say The Darnedest Things

Pros

Don’t cast aspirations on her femininity – Cast aspersions, instead.

It continues to reside in the attack. – I had to go up to the attic, to research this.

He spoke a sort of pigeon Galician – This pigeon thinks it should read pidgin.

So, needlessly to say – It was needless to use an adverb instead of an adjective.

He built the viaduct that brought the water – Then it would be an aqueduct.

Mary had a little lamb.  Her cheeks were white as snow – And the lamb’s fleece was white as snow.

The horseflies left whelps with their bites – The young whelps had welts on them.

The squad debauched from the fort – This debauched author meant debouched.

The pilot waggled the plane’s wings for an instance – an instance where it should read, instant.

The company was marketing Santinism. – They weren’t marketing the correct spelling of Satanism.

Phone gets stuck in base guitar – It’s fishy that there’s no bass.

Businessman revels how he got rich – If I were rich, I’d revel, but I wouldn’t reveal how I did it.

He sniffed his depreciation of the idea. – I’d appreciate him using deprecation

The family fortune was dilapidated – and my patience with this usage was depleted.

Amateurs

The idea has gained some exposer recently – Police arrested the exposer for indecent exposure.

Believe it or not – I found a Belief It Or Not Christian video – not wrong…. just wrong!

They were forced to be reckoned with. – I was forced to write, “A force to be reckoned with.”

An elderly none came in – but the nun would have none of that spelling.

She was dancing in the isleI’ll tell you that it should be aisle.

Vacuums don’t cause autism – Neither do vaccines.

I pulled up the parking brake leaver – Well, leave ‘er parked, and look up lever.

Darwin advocated ‘Survival of the Fitness’ – The fittest of us know that’s not true.

It could justify killing or torchering – That spelling is torturing me.

One only has to take a looksy – to know that it should be a look-see.

I was going to lambest him for saying that – I’s like to lambaste you for using lambest.

I’m into essential oils and incest. – Does your daughter know about this?

‘The Office’ is a meaty okra show. – About as mediocre as that spelling.

She said she got a Bachelorette Degree – Blondie meant a baccalaureate!!

I have only lent in my pocket – because you gave up your dictionary for lent.

A term that attempts to draft on an air of coolness – I drank some cool draft while I looked up graft.

This woman had the gull to insult him – A little bird told me she had gall.

He’s got the saddle soars to prove it – Lets waft on over to where they are sores.

***

Now that I’ve had something to say about some things that other people say, it’s back to business as usual.  What??!  Ranting IS my usual?  I dare you to read this post and say that.   😉

Bakers’ Dozen Fibbing Fridays

Pensitivity101 and her Loss Control Officer were distracted by a troupe of Polish folk-dancers, so I was able to make off, undetected, with another list of ten chances to win the Paul Bunyan Tall Tale award.

  1. What did the Three Wise Men bring as gifts to the babe in the stables?

Watermelon-flavored bubblegum, a Hello Kitty backpack, and a bunch of those pine-scented car deodorizers.  Do you know what stables smell like??!  And He’s not helping matters any.  He’s being investigated by the EPA for air quality violations.  “Holy shit” may be what He produces, but it still reeks.
2. Band Aid had a Number One hit with the same record 3 times. What was it?

A catchy little ad-jingle that goes I am stuck on Band-Aid brand, ‘cause Band-Aid’s stuck on me.
3. Why is Rudolph’s nose red?

Santa can’t possibly eat all the cookies and drink all the milk that people leave out for him, all by himself, so Rudolf helps out.  Approximately 40% of the milk – and almost all of the egg nog – are chemically enhanced with rum, rye or vodka.  The night barely begins before Rudolf’s bloodshot eyes start to leak down to his nose.  The bright glow helps tell where they are, but soon Rudy has no idea where he’s going.  Santa has to attach a Garmin mini-GPS unit to his antlers, even to assure they get back to dead-drunk North.
4. Who was Santa’s Little Helper?

They were some special little ‘stay-awake’ pills that Santa got from Walter White of the Breaking Bad TV show.  Pound a few of those down with a king-can or two of Monster© soda, and stay awake and alert for the 24 hours that it takes to chase the sunrise, and deliver seven billion toys in 24 hours.
5. What will you find on Quality Street?

Snooty bitches like Posh Spice, (GOOP) Gwyneth Paltrow, and Oprah Winfrey, believing their own press, and looking down their noses at lesser beings – anyone other than them.  What you won’t find, is the likes of the Kardashians, Nicky Minaj, or Cardi B – who all believe in quantity, over Quality.
6. What is egg nog?

According to the translation of the French side of Canadian cartons, it is “Chicken Milk.”  I don’t know how you’d milk a chicken.  You must need a very short stool.
7. Who is Saint Nick?

He is my neighbor, Nicholas Dunning-Kruger, whose wife is an obsessive shopper.  She only has two complaints – “I have nothing to wear.” and, “There is no room in my closet.”  She will contentedly spend 12 to 14 hours of a Saturday, going into every shoe store within a fifteen-mile radius, and still return home with nothing more than a smile.  Nick obligingly, obediently, uncomplainingly drives her around and patiently waits for her.  He is the inspiration for my Beothuk Flash Fiction.  I don’t know why he hasn’t smothered her, or slashed her wrists with a sharpened credit card.  He truly is a saint.
8. Where is Christmas Island?

It’s at the seaward end of the Happy Holidays Archipelago, just across the Incensed Christians Strait from Lovingly Inclusive Key.  There are lots of shopping and party places, but be careful if you want to visit.  There are a bunch of religious nut-cases who try to block access with large crosses, and insist that they own the entire island, when they only hold title to one small area.
9. What does Feliz Navidad mean?

It means that you’re living too far south in the United States.  Move somewhere far enough north that people say Merry Christmas – or at least, Happy Holidays – or your festive meal will be arroz con pollo. (recipe)
10. What is a gobbler?

That would be my divorced uncle, Fred, at any Easter, Thanksgiving or Christmas family gathering where someone else is providing a home cooked meal.  Free is his favorite flavor.

 

Speaking English Like An Arab

Over centuries, dozens of Arabic words have entered the English language, through science, philosophy, mathematics, food, fabrics, trade and travel.

Most were introduced by inland and maritime trade along the Silk Route, while others came through the Islamic conquests of southern Europe. Not all of these words are of Arabic origin – some came from India, Persia and ancient Greece – but Arab merchants helped export them to the West.

Finally, the discovery of medieval Islamic scientists and astronomers during the Renaissance brought new words and concepts to Europe.  I have picked the top 15 most surprising words with Arabic origins.

Admiral: amir أمير

The word for this high-ranking naval commander evolved from amir, the Arabic word for a prince or ruler. The word was first documented on the island of Sicily in the 11th century, where the Arabs had ruled for 300 years.

Alchemy: al kimiya الكيمياء

The ancient branch of philosophy known as alchemy involved the study of substances and materials. Medieval alchemists believed that some liquids could be turned to gold, or a potion that would make its drinker immortal. The original Arabic word stems from the Greek term “khemeia, though some scholars also trace its roots back to ancient Egypt.

Cotton: qutun قطن

Though cotton was known to the ancient Romans, the word and the fabric were imported by Arab merchants to Europe in the late Middle Ages.

Elixir: al-iksir الإكسير

Today, an elixir is a liquid remedy with healing powers. In Arabic, it originally referred to a dry powder for treating wounds. It was later adopted by alchemists who referred to an elixir as the elusive mineral powder that would turn metals into gold.

Jumper: jubba جبّة

The Arabic word for overcoat originally entered European languages as “juppa“, valuable silk clothing, in southern Italy in the 11th century.

Macrame: miqrama مقرمة

This type of knotted textile used in craft and high fashion originates from the hand-loomed fabrics of Arabic weavers. In Arabic, miqrama refers to an embroidered tapestry or bedspread.

Mohair: al-mokhayyar المخيّر

In Arabic, al-mokhayyar was a high-quality cloth made of fine goat hair. Various forms of it were imported to the West for centuries, the most famous being the wool made from Angora goats of Turkey.

Monsoon: mawsim موسم

Early Arab sea merchants on the Indian Ocean rim used the word “mawsim” or “seasons” to refer to the seasonal sailing winds. Later, the word was adopted by Portuguese, Dutch and English sailors as they navigated extreme weather conditions off the coasts of India, South-East Asia and China.

Muslin: musuliyin موصلي

Muslin, a cotton-based fabric, is said to have derived its name from the traders of the city of Mosul, or the musuliyin, who imported it from South Asia to Europe.

Nadir: nazir نظير

In English, a nadir refers to the worst moment, or the point at which something is of the least value. But in Arabic, the word means a counterpart, and was used in medieval Islamic astronomy to refer to the diametrically opposing points of a celestial sphere.

Orange: naranj نارنج

Though both the fruit and the word came from India, Arabs introduced oranges to the Mediterranean region. For many southern European countries today, they are considered a staple fruit.

Serendipity: serendib سرنديب

The ancient fairy tale place of Serendib, which appears in One Thousand and One Nights and other ancient oral traditions, was also the old Arabic name for the island of Sri Lanka. The English word serendipity, meaning a fortunate discovery, was coined by the English author Horace Walpole in 1754.

Safari: safar سفر

The English adopted the Swahili word for journey – safari – in the 19th century for their hunting expeditions in East Africa. Though a safari today involves an organized trip to spot wild animals, its origins are from the Arabic “safar”, or journey, a reminder of the crucial presence of Arab sea merchants on the East African coast.

Sugar: sukkar سكّر

Another word to have travelled the Silk Road is sugar, which was originally produced in India. By the sixth century, sugar cane cultivation reached Persia, and was brought into the Mediterranean by the Arabs, who produced it extensively.

Tariff: ta’riff تعريف

A tariff in Medieval Arabic means a notification. It was introduced to western languages around the 14th century through commerce on the Mediterranean Sea, where it referred to the bill of lading on a merchant ship, or the statement of products and prices for sale.

Somebody Kicked His Imaginary Puppy

Even when I Have Nothing To Say About Christianity, some of them get all butt-hurt about it.  Yay me!  I’d take a victory lap – if it was a real accomplishment.

One fundamental reality that those who call themselves atheists don’t realize is this; there is an extraordinarily cunning being who is elated that they refuse to believe in God and will do what it takes to keep them in that state of delusion.

I mean, he even offered God in the flesh incentives to deny Himself.

Awwww.  Did someone kick your imaginary puppy??!  I’ll pray that Jesus comes to stroke your fevered brow, and make everything all better…. while you’re busy refuting these memes.  That Iceland one might be a problem.  You could claim that God-appointed, Donald Trump was prevented from buying it, and folding it into the Holy Christian American Empire.

So few words – so many misconceptions.

The most cunning trick that the Mother Church ever pulled, was to convince the faithful that Satan exists – and They (and only They) can protect you, if you just give up…. 10% of your income, your autonomy, your ability to think – critically.

The language usage is devious, and questionable, being used to prop up shaky assumptions and claims.  The existence of God, or the Devil, is not a fundamental reality, unless and until proof or at least sufficiently convincing evidence is presented.  Your blind belief, no matter how strong, does not ensure that it is the truth.

those who call themselves atheists  Atheist do not “call themselves Atheists,” like it was some trendy term they just pulled out of their ass, any more than Christians just call themselves Theists.  These are linguistic definitions, based on individuals’ belief, or lack thereof.  Some people’s gullibility level is just higher (or lower) than others’.

Atheism is generally, just not believing in the existence of God – or gods.  It is having not been presented with sufficiently convincing evidence.  There are some Atheists who would refuse to believe in the Christian God.  Most Atheists I know, myself included, would quickly and rationally believe – just as soon as that evidence is provided.  To even suggest otherwise is foolish.  I mean, c’mon, salvation, eternal life, Heaven…. and especially Hell, if they were clearly shown to exist.  It is the religious who most often reject any position which does not agree with their presuppositions.

Especially for the believers in the tripartite God – Father, Son and Holy Spirit – there are some convincing refutations.  If Jesus is God, who did He pray to in the Garden of Gethsemane?  While he was on the cross, He said, “Forgive them Father, for they know not what they do.”  If Jesus was God, why did He have to report this?  Was the Internet down that day??!

Bobby Butthurt has unintentionally provided me with yet another contradiction – an arguing point that I had not previously considered.  I mean, he even offered God-in-the-flesh incentives to deny Himself.  If Jesus is God incarnate, creator and owner of infinity, and all that is – what could Satan possibly offer him as incentives??!  What do you get a deity Who already has everything?  😕

Book Review #27

Through no fault of my own, I managed to read another book which is older than me.  It is over four decades older, though to categorize it as a book, is perhaps generous.  It was only 68 pages, a couple of them being photos from a trip.  It is said to be the first English-language book produced in this German-speaking town.  I did not acquire it just to tick off a reading challenge sector.

The book:  A Canadian’s Travels In Egypt

The author:  Ward H. Bowlby K.C.

The review:  If you Googled ‘Vanity Press,’ there would be a picture of this ego trip about an Egyptian trip.  A local historian publishes a weekly newspaper column.  He mentioned that he had a pdf file of a carefully-scanned 1902 original.  He would forward a copy to anyone who asked – so I asked.

Ward Bowlby was a big noise here in then-Berlin, Ontario, at the end of the 19th century.  He had attended Ontario Law College in Toronto, being first in his class each year.  He came from a well-to-do family.  Besides generous fees, paid by other local captains of industry, he owned a large timber/lumber company during a significant period of city growth.

In the winter of 1898/99, he felt that he had earned a little vacation.  This was not your average on-the-cheap tourist-class jaunt.  Ward, and 8 of his family and friends, took a four month getaway from a cold, Canadian winter, including two months on a Nile houseboat.

They went by train from Berlin to New York City, and boarded a steamer.  Over 11 days, they visited Gibraltar, Pompeii, and Naples.  Then they transferred to an Italian steamer for a trip to Alexandria.  After eight days in Cairo, which included a visit by the two men in the party to an ‘Arab music hall,’ where they were suitably scandalized by half-naked belly-dancers, they chartered a Nile tour-boat.

They got as far upstream as Aswan (Assouan), and then returned, visiting village markets, Luxor tombs, the Sphinx, and the Great Pyramids.  Bowlby kept a daily diary of the Egyptian portion, later turning it into a published travelogue.  After Egypt, the party spent 10 days in ‘The Holy Land’ – Palestine, long before the (re)creation of Israel.  Sadly, Bowlby kept no notes about that segment of the trip.

He had 56 copies printed, and bound with leather with gilt lettering.  He autographed each copy, and gave them to people he wanted to impress.  I don’t know how common these travelogues were at that time.  This one has the feel of the quiet bombast of, This is something that I could afford to do, and you can’t.  The K. C. behind his name, above, indicates, not merely a lawyer, but King’s Counsel.  He suffixed each autograph with ‘Esq.’

The manuscript itself was as tedious as the year-end newsletter you might receive from any bragging almost-friend.  The basic story though, was like watching the Hercule Poirot movie, Death On The Nile, an interesting historical glimpse into the period actions of some monied Canadians.

I Cant Rely On Kindle

I continue to hold my love of dead-tree versions of books, if only because I can get many of them for free, from the Library – and often in LARGE PRINTTo you, with failing eyes, we throw – something you may more easily read.  I am becoming more habituated and inured to the Kindle book variants, especially since a couple of authors, whose series I follow, publish only electronically.

One of the benefits to Kindle is that, when the writer uses an esoteric or unfamiliar word, I need only poke the screen to get a dictionary meaning.  I had hoped that the meaning of every word used in each book would be available, but the dictionary file is on-board, not accessed on the internet.  That hope was dashed, repeatedly, by a recent book.

I read, I knew by the cant of his head, so I poked CANT in the eye – actually, in the A.  I got back, an expression of enthusiasm for high ideals – a sermon or extended oration.  Neither of those seemed to fill the bill, so I took a taxi over to Dictionary.com, which told me that my ‘cant’ meant, a salient angle – a slanted or tilting position.

On the next page, They had not hung the celebratory bunting.  Kindle only offered me two small, seed-eating birds, one European, one American.  My online dictionary was far more generous.  First it told me that bunting was a baseball play, where a pitched ball is gently returned by a stationary bat, or, it could be a hooded sleeping garment for infants (also, bunting bag).  Finally, it admitted that bunting was patriotic and festive decorations made from coarse cloth, or from paper, usually in the form of draperies, wide streamers, etc., in the colors of the national flag.  That’s the one I needed.  Busy word!

The story said, “Fashion was becoming important.  Lacing emphasized waists, and skirts flared out with gores.”  I poked the word ‘gores,’ and got, Gore, Al, Vice-President of the United States.  It’s a good thing they weren’t playing cards, or I’d have been told that trump was the President.  Their boat-launching site was a couple of klicks past the fort.  I should have known better.  Kindle claimed that klicks meant the same as clicks.  Now see here, Kindle, see also: slang, (mainly) military, diminutive of kilometers.

At last, the literary bad guy, returned to his hant.  When I prodded Kindle, it told me that Han was a Chinese river, or a dynasty from 206 B C to 220 A D.  Interesting, but that’s not even the same word.  Dictionary.com only told me that hant was the Scottish form of the verb – to haunt.  I had to go further afield for this one.

I eventually found that, from that Scottish verb form, came the noun which means, an often light-duty structure, temporarily or intermittently occupied, such as a party tent, duck blind or fishing hut.  This all qualifies as an episode of Things I Learned While Researching Other Things.

I am surprised that I was never asked, Did you mean can’t?  I can’t wait to see what I publish in a couple of days.  Are you as excited as I am?  😉

One Of These Things Is Not Like The Other

If you have never remarked, at least to yourself, about the number of English words that are almost the same size and shape, have almost the same letters and meaning, and yet are different…. You’ve never done a crossword puzzle.  😳

Where to find Guinness – Any decent bar – but in the crossword, you have to work sideways.  What is the second latter?  Is it Eire or Erin?

Claim – is it aver, or avow?

Price rise – bump or jump?

Cell inhabitants – nuns or cons?

Prohibit – bar or ban?

Talk a lot – yak or gab?

Geological period – era or eon?

Sleep – nod or nap?

The top – acme or apex?

Peak – top or tip?

Not real – fake or faux?

Hand warmers – mitts or muffs?

Gourmet delicacy – snail or quail?

Hurled – flung or slung?

Comics dog – Otto or Odie?

Over – atop or upon?

The 411 – info or data?

Stop up – plug or clog?

Exploited – milked or bilked?

Wicked – evil or vile?

Senate yes – aye or yea?

Kick out – eject or evict?

Made mad – angered or enraged?

Outdo – beat or best?

Pants part – seat or seam?

Agree with – sync or side?

Father-involved – parental or paternal?….or, if mother’s involved – prenatal

Old-time actress, in five letters – starts with GA.  Ooh!  Ooh!  I got this!  Green Acres TV show – Eva Gabor.  Oops. Sorry!  Even old-timier than that – Greta Garbo!  Same five letters – different order.  Rats!

Dog food brand (in four) – Iams or Alpo

Because of the product that they provide, crossword composers are usually exacting and precise in the usage of words in both their clues, and solutions.  Sadly, illiteracy and incorrect usage creep in, even among the best.

The solution to doesn’t want to, is the six-letter word averse, not the seven-letter adverse, which means, unfavorable, contrary, opposing.

The correct response, (in four letters, second letter I), to lay low is kill.  To hide, is to lie low.

The pedant in me says that core group is not a cadre!  A cadre is a frame or border, which contains other things placed inside.  If you’re pretentious enough to use the word cadre, then your core group are the newbies.

Muss one’s hair.  Tussle means wrestle, scuffle or struggle  It’s not accurate, unless we’re talking about Amos, from the 9 Chickweed Lane comic strip – tousle comes from the Scottish touse – to handle roughly – to dishevel.

Finally, we get to related things which occur serially and sequentially, but are not identical.

Festive nights are not eves!  Eve is the short form for evening, the time when light and dark are about the same – dusk, twilight, nightfall, even gloaming – depending on the date, perhaps from Six P.M. till Nine.   ‘Nights’ continue through till sunup the next morning, but very few festive parties do.

To fill a pipe does not mean tamp.  They are two separate actions.  A pipe must first be filled, before the tobacco can be tamped down for a slow, even smoulder.  It’s why Scotty stopped smoking a pipe.  When he was smoking someone else’s tobacco, he crammed so much into the bowl that he could hardly draw.  When he was smoking his own, there was so little that it wasn’t worth it.

Ties vs. laces.  I see teenagers all the time, whose shoes have been laced, the ends of which are dragging on the ground, untied.  I often wonder why they, or someone else, don’t step on a trailing end, and produce an epic face-plant.

Unlatch a gate – open.  I can unlatch a gate, and leave it for the dog, or the cows, or even my buddy the burglar, to open when it is necessary, or convenient.

Assuming that the therapy session goes well, and the meds kick in, I’ll be back, as usual, in a couple of days.  You’ve been warned.  😉

Inventing Christianity

I offer the following, as it was offered to me – for cogitation and contemplation.  I have found no official corroboration, nor refutation.  Christians who deny that their religion is not just a made-up one, can research this historical document, apparently composed and signed by Constantine, Roman Emperor and first, self-appointed Pope.   😯

A new consciousness of personal human dignity has emerged across our empire.  Men feel the infinite value and responsibility of a new life.  But within their realm of imposed happiness, a strange thing is occurring.  As naturally as they have rejected the former political structure, men have begun to seek a religion of a more personal nature.

It is admitted that when in recent times the appearance of our Savior, Jesus Christ had become known to all men, there immediately made its appearance a new religion, not small, and not dwelling in some corner of the Earth, but indestructible and unconquerable, because it has assistance directly from God.  This religion, thus suddenly appearing at the time appointed by the inscrutable counsel of God, is the one that has been honored by all with the name of Christ.

It is true that religion and civilization advance together.  But it is equally true that religious creeds and practices can often lag behind civilization.  We find that situation at present with the lingering of the pagan gods and the emergence of the new Christian faith.  We find a further example of this with the new Christian faith fighting within itself, so many varied views as to what should or should not be believed.  So many different ideas as to who and what is God and who and what is our Savior.

Any religion must reflect the pure ideals of the society in which it exists, its practices and sacrifices can only be as the general sentiment allows.  No new religion can easily claim the soil where other gods have long been worshipped.  To survive, a religion must have structure, rules, order, and, most important, consistency.  The following mandates are offered as a means to protect that which we created:

Always remember that an Angry vengeful God is preferable to a benign, loving entity.  We must Proclaim that Obedience and compliance with God’s directives is the only way to obtain eternal peace in heaven, while disobedience leads to everlasting suffering.  The fear of that perpetual suffering should be used to keep the faithful under our control.  The faithful can never forget that the only salvation from their fear comes from the Christian faith, its Doctrine and practices never open to question, their obedience absolute.

Sin is the mechanism whereby control will be enforced.  For the Hebrew nation the Ten Commandments, which Moses first delivered, have long stood as their basic tenets.  But we need more.  A list of sins should be created, a list that adapts to the times, each sin designed to instill fear.  There must be a clear belief that a failure to obtain forgiveness of sin places the immortal soul in the gravest of danger, with forgiveness obtained only through the Christian faith.  This concept should begin at birth with the belief that all men are born into the world with sin.  Never will they dwell with God unless there is absolution for this original sin through the Christian faith.

Many of the prior religions fostered a belief that when one lifetime ends another begins, the cycle never ending.  This spiritual immortality, this reincarnation is surely comforting, but the Christian faith will offer only one physical life and One opportunity at eternal salvation.  When that life ends the soul moves to either heaven or hell, both of which we must not only create but define.

Never can the failings of man be blamed on any lacking or deficiency in the Christian faith.  Instead an adversary must be created.  A diabolos, a spirit, a devil, who constantly poses challenges along the path to salvation.  All of man’s sins and shortcomings must be blamed on this devil, who is always present, always tempting, never relenting, with the only resistance coming from Christian doctrine.

No spiritual abilities can ever be tolerated.  Those who profess visions or an ability to speak with God are a danger.  As treason is punishable by death, heretical thinking and acts must likewise know the wrath of God.  Heretics can never be tolerated, their deaths a righteous calling, a warning to others that actions and thoughts contrary to the Christian faith come with dire consequences.  Killing in the name of God is not a sin.  Defending the faith with the spilling of blood is a duty we must never abandon.  (Emphasis mine – lovely religion, this Christianity.)

Religion expresses itself in terms of the knowledge of the world in which it exists.  If that be defective then religion likewise is defective.  Never be afraid to change.  It is the only way to survive.  But never be too anxious to do so, either.

Sacred objects are those things that man must not use or touch because they belong only to God.  Creating these, whether they be churches, places, people, words, or things, is essential to rooting our Christian faith.  Keeping them sacred through rules and punishments is equally important.

Priests shall become a special class unto themselves.  I am the natural choice to ultimately lead these priests, as religion is a vital part of politics.  The first duty of the state is to stay right with God and keep God on good terms with the people.  The priests’ duty is to keep the people on good terms with me.

Above all, the Essence of Christianity must be in loving God and following Him in faith, but it must also include upholding the authority of the Priests and believing in Christian doctrine without question.  On this objective we must unite as the conduct of public affairs will be considerably eased if we take this step.  Let us rejoice in unity.

Constantinus
Pontifex maximus
Nicea
ad 325

Dim And Dimmer

Two uncommon words walk into a bar, arguing about whether they are homonyms, or homophones.  No-one greets them by name, like Norm, on “Cheers,” because no-one recognises them.

In most cases of homonyms, people know one or both of the odd couple.  Everyone knows both wait, and weight.  Most are familiar with meet and meat, but mete might be a stranger.  I recently ran into a pair of homophones that only word-nerds like me don’t need to be introduced to.  Ladies and gentlemen – let’s have a big hand for the comedy duo of

FAIN AND FEIGN

FAIN: adverb – gladly, willingly – adjective – willing, glad, pleased, eager
FEIGN: imitate deceptively, make believe, pretend, put on an appearance of

Rather than argue about whether to call themselves homonyms, or homophones, they might better try to find another term to describe themselves.  Far too many ‘Good Christians’ in the Bible Belt of the southern United States, particularly in Arkansas and Texas, get far too upset, ‘and don’t cotton to none of that there HOMO-anything!’

A not-out gay comedian was doing a tour of small cities in West Texas.  Perhaps looking for a bit of one-night companionship, he engaged the waitress in a greasy-spoon diner, about the presence of local gay culture – clubs, favored restaurants, etc.  She quickly and firmly informed him, “They ain’t no homosexuals in Texas.  Not live ones, anyways.”

I would fain believe her, and I do not have to feign my distress.

The largest group of homonyms heteronyms includes AIR, ERR, E’ER, ERE, HEIR, AYR, AYRE, AYER and perhaps a Canadian EHer.  I’ll be back in a couple of days.  Be sure to join me, eh.  😉   😆