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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Funny (10/04/12)

TITLE: What is in a Word?
By Ramona Cook
10/08/12


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In our English street language we use the word “funny” in several ways.

Some things are “funny” ha ha, and some are “funny” strange, even weird. Some are “funny” for consideration of silliness, and that is the kind of “funny” I want to present in my true story, well, part of it.

It happened one Sunday morning in the spring of probably 1944. My Mother was taking her knee baby (me, at 5 years of age) her toddler and her lap baby to church. Mother attended a very conservative denomination of the Church of God. That particular group did not permit women to “adorn” themselves with make-up or jewelry,
the women wore long sleeves and considerably long dresses, and their hair was always long as well.

As we were crossing the street to the Church there was a lady that I thought looked beautiful. She had dark hair that was under a beautiful white hat, her dress was calf length and it was also white. Her finger nails and toe nails were painted bright red, her shoes were high heeled sandals, and she was decked out with bright gold jewelry.

I asked my mother where that lady was going; she responded that the lady was going to the Catholic Church, which was on the same street.

I doubt we had gone more than 10 steps before I announced to Mother that I was going to be a Catholic when I grew up.

That was “funny” for a five year old.

But I have to ask myself what other decisions I have made based on what I thought was beautiful and promising.

I’ve certainly done that in a marriage, actually two marriages.

It is “funny strange” how we hope for and think we see something that in fact does not exist, except for the moment.

I do wear lipstick and heels and jewelry now, but I am not a better Christian than was my mother when she did not.

I tried to be married and I was a faithful wife. I worked hard and was thrifty. Why would the pieces not fit to complete the picture is a puzzle to me.

For a number of years I felt hurt and decided that it was their entire fault, in each case, because I could not see anything I had done wrong. Later, much later, I had to admit that I had refused to read the road signs.

In so many ways the message from them had been loud and clear, but I refused to acknowledge the message, because I had a picture of what was “right” and doggedly I held on to it.

I still consider my major fault in the marriages to be that I imagined a relationship that was not there in fact.

I would have been a kinder person if I had cut the binder for them, because men do not like to cut the strings of marriage. They much prefer it to have been the woman’s idea. I think because it then frees them to appear as a responsible man saying, “It was not what I wanted.” Despite the fact that they act out, sometimes for years, saying with their actions, “I don’t like you.”

Sometimes our “man” is “mama’s little boy, in a big body.” Sometimes we girls have been raised to be caretakers and we look good to them, in the beginning, kind of motherly, until we need them to be our man.

It is “funny” strange how we don’t see the real things. Just as a five year old who thought a dazzlingly dressed lady was superior as a woman; we often think and act upon the momentary illusion.

Is there a sad “funny?”

It must be that to discern each moment and each day for what it provides to us in hard copy information is a better way to make decisions about what is and what is not beautiful; about what is and is not real.

Living a fantasy is not funny.

But life has it's funny spots for all of us, and sometimes we are the joke and get to laugh at ourselves.

In all times we do have the great priviledge of enjoying and praising a Great God Who is always a Certainity in our behalf, and that should be a fact to put a constant smile on our face.


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This article has been read 227 times
Member Comments
Member Date
CD Swanson 10/11/12
Sweet story with a beautiful message. Thank you.
God bless~
Phee Paradise 10/12/12
Life is funny in a lot of ways. You demonstrated this with several good examples. Your description of the dressed up lady was very good, but I think your point about the marriages was a little vague.
Marie Hearty 10/12/12
Some very good points you make here. Good story!

God bless.
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 10/13/12
This is a powerful story and I'm sure not easy to tell to a bunch of strangers. I admire your courage in sharing.

I think you'd be surprised if you counted the number of times you used the word funny. You can be on topic without using the topic word at all. Though I understand the feeling that people may not get it if you don't use the word. To that I say trust yourself. It was clear that you were talking about the funny--strange and not the ha-ha kind. You didn't need to repeat the word because you showed it was on topic with your well-written words.

I believe this story will really touch many hearts. Like you said there is a sad funny too and you definitely showed the reader that as well. You have a gift of storytelling and I'm honored to have read this piece. It speaks volumes. I especially enjoyed the childhood story. Keep writing.
Judy Sauer 10/17/12
Interesting story. What could have made it powerful would be shifting words around to avoid starting nearly every sentence with I.

Two of the best friends a writer can have are the Thesaurus and Dictionary. I encourage you to explore alternative words. This is where the teammates of Thesaurus and Dictionary intersect. What words you are unfamiliar with, find the definition.

As Oliver Wendell Holmes once said, "A mind, once stretched by a new idea never returns to its original state."

Keep up the writing. Glad you submitted this story. Your explanations for the various types of funny were great. Good, bad, happy, or sad, tyou're bound to find a funny.