Week 1 – Bucolic Week 2 – Knack Week 3 – Drudge Week 4 Impunity
“Vice-president Pence comes from a bucolic region where farms are still common.” The regions where our president and vice president have their origins give us an interesting contrast. Trump comes from the hustle and bustle of the New York metropolitan scene. Mike Pence comes from the less metropolitan area of Indiana which has many farming communities. Born and raised in Indiana, Pence has a religious background where Trump has become a believer only in recent years. This stark contrast of backgrounds helps balance the leadership of our country. A bucolic background helps to smooth the political waters of the Presidential office!
“My home town in Oklahoma is in a bucolic region where farms are still common.” This week’s word, ‘bucolic,’ is an adjective with two related meanings. The most often used definition is “relating to or typical of rural life (as in our example sentence). The second way it is used is “of or relating to shepherds or herdsmen.” Two synonyms that give some additional sense to bucolic are rural and rustic which lends itself to giving a calm and placid feeling. Davenport, Oklahoma, where I spent part of my early childhood is a sleepy little country hamlet surrounded by farms and woods. It is a typical bucolic rural community!
“The London to Edinburgh commuter train scampers through a bucolic landscape complete with green fields, cattle, and quaint farm houses.” A ‘bucolic’ landscape will be a peaceful pastoral scene that is complete with wooded areas, grassy knolls, and tilled fields ready for planting. Manmade structures are seldom more that barns, cow pens, and farm houses. An occasional small village may also be seen, but rarely will it include a bustling, large community of modern homes, businesses, and factories. A bucolic landscape is an artist or photographers delight!
“The massive population growth between New York and Washington, D.C., has transformed a collection of bucolic villages and mill towns into a chain of strip-mall suburbs and urban blight.” This example sentence portrays a contrast between an early American scene and today’s modern world. By way of history, “We get bucolic from the Latin word bucolicus, which is ultimately from the Greek word boukolos, meaning ‘cowherd.’ When bucolic was first used in English in the early 17th century, it meant “pastoral” in a narrow sense – that is, it referred to things related to shepherds or herdsmen and in particular to pastoral poetry.” (A quote from the Merriam-Webster dictionary.) Much of the bucolic American countryside is fast disappearing today!
“Her marriage to Jack was very serene and bucolic.” Many relationships do not have this kind of description. A seldom used meaning of bucolic is that of ‘idyllic.’ To some people a rural life in a pastoral setting would tend to be an ideal way of life. However, in our modern culture, this way of life is rapidly passing away. Many parents would like to have their children grow up in such a stable atmosphere but our modern lifestyles do not lend themselves well to this. Not many of us today have such a serene and bucolic life!
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“Many liberals have a knack for drawing unreasonable expectations for the future.” They do this because they want to change everything. They think that nothing of today or yesterday carries much value for what the future should be. They imagine things that have little basis in reality and that have never been proven as workable. Their rampant imagination does not see any limitation on what they can do. They have a tendency to ignore valid laws built on experience. This ‘knack’ produces completely unreasonable results!
“Once you get the knack of riding a bicycle you’ll never lose it.” This example sentence we have all heard at least once or twice. It does illustrate one of the meanings of ‘knack’ as an ability, talent, or special skill needed to do something. Knack also means “a special ready capacity that is hard to analyze or teach.” A second meaning of knack is “a clever trick or stratagem and/or a clever way of doing something.” Knack comes from a Middle English word “knak” first appearing in use during the 14th century. To have a knack for doing something special is a gift, so don’t lose it!
“Nick, (grandson of a friend) has a knack for drawing.” Every time we see him, he is drawing some kind of cartoon picture. Nick is in high school and handicapped, but he has a real talent for drawing in pencil and charcoal. He hopes to someday be a cartoon artist. He is proof that a person with a handicap can be creative and artistic. Nick says he is still developing his ‘knack’ for drawing!
R. K. Kidd is a jazz musician with an incredible knack for improvisation. Not only is he a musician, but an accomplished artist. His art work is special for his ability to give his art a sense of motion while at the same time bringing the static picture of the musician’s music into a sense of movement. I have several of his pictures on my wall and really enjoy his ability to give his pictures a sense of sound motion. He does indeed have a knack for improvisation with his art and music!
“She’s tried every knack in Cupid’s book to get her guy to marry her.” This is a relationship that you really need to question. This guy is either really smart or really dumb. If he is smart, he is avoiding a solid commitment, and he is doing so for a reason. His reason is that he may not want to get married. If he is dumb, can she really want to marry someone who lacks the intelligence to know what she wants or how to take care of her? In either case, she has a problem. Her heart tells her one thing and logic is telling her another. Every knack in Cupid’s book is evidently not her answer!
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“Many Democrats like to think of themselves as representatives of factory workers who must drudge all day at repetitive tasks.” This is a myth. In the past this might have been true, but today they want the government to provide everything to a bunch of lazy bums who do not want to work or put out any effort to take care of themselves. Democrats now representative leeches who suck life out of anyone who dares to work and make a living. They would like to be the ruling class and be served by robotic drudges to serve their every need. To them, conservatives are drudges who should work to serve them!
“The simplest remedies feel like weights drudged up from the bottom of the ocean.” This week’s word ‘drudge’ is both an intransitive verb and a transitive verb. It also has a noun form which means “a person who does boring, difficult, or unpleasant work.” The verb means “to do hard, menial or monotonous work” or task that usually requires only physical effort. The origin of this word is from a 14th century Middle English word “druggen.” When something is drugged up, it normally has little meaning but is a task that must be done!
I wonder how I would react to being called a drudge. One example I ran across was “I take exception, though, to being called a drudge.” This thought smacks of being a prisoner who is forced to do hard, menial, or monotonous work without the chance of freedom. This thought really makes you feel thankful for being free and able to make choices that you like. As Americans, we all need to be aware and give thanks that we still have many freedoms. When being a citizen means that you are a drudge for the powerful, that is when you should be scared!
“Without higher education, you may have to slave and drudge to gain a bare sufficiency of the necessaries of life.” Higher education is not always a key to success, but it is helpful. The truth of our example sentence is not a happy thought, but it should be a motivating factor for young people to learn all they can and to try to find that special gift or ability that will allow them to live without being forced to do boring, difficult, or unpleasant work. There are some who are not motivated, who do not have special skills, or are not gifted who may not have a choice but to be a drudge!
The ‘noun’ form of drudge means “a person who does boring, difficult, or unpleasant work.” This noun form has a very negative effect upon a relationship. For one partner in a relationship to be called or think of themselves as a ‘drudge’ injects a mental image of someone who has limited ability or motivation. It hinders trust and an interchange of ideas by putting subconscious limits upon the activities of one of the partners in the relationship. Such thinking puts a degrading influence into the relationship. Thinking of another as a drudge can be an extremely damaging influence upon any relationship!
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“Most liberals think they can do their devious deeds with impunity.” History has given us example after example where this attitude prevails. It may work for a while, but a train wreck will happen that upsets their plans. Human beings are incapable of creating a perfect environment where everything works to perfection. The laws of physics are in place that hinder doing things with impunity. Today, we are seeing the breakdown of authority structures in our society and the obvious results will be chaos. No one knows the final end result of chaos, not even liberals. Doing things with impunity will put forces in play that brings unexpected punishment to all wrong doers!
“History tells us that when laws are flouted with impunity that country is disintegrating.” It is sad to see the short-sightedness of people that think laws are made to protect some but not all citizens. Impunity is a noun that means exemption or freedom from punishment, harm, or loss. Dictators rule with impunity because they become the sole source of law and authority. In a dictatorship there is no open exchange of ideas, there is no dissent, and there is no choice but to do the will of the dictator. The rule of law and respect for law is what enables a country to operate without chaos. The U.S. is disintegrating because our laws are being violated with impunity!
“He had the inanely foolish idea that he was a person who could deceive with impunity.” There is a saying “everyone faces death and pays taxes.” Some things everyone will face and pay the penalty for if it is immoral or illegal. Deceiving innocent people will eventually be found out and legal means will be used to prevent the deceiver from continuing his fraud. Impunity is a mental state of an unbalanced mind. Any human who commits immoral or inhuman acts against other humans will face punishment. Do not harbor the foolish idea that you can deceive with impunity!
“He could do whatever he wanted to whoever he wanted, and with impunity.” This statement can only apply to a king or dictator who has absolute power over people. Cuba’s Castro, Russia’s Stalin and Kim Jung-un of North Korea are examples of this kind of impunity. For the rest of us, we must obey the rules and laws of the country we live in. However, in our country we are seeing the rise of a godless, lawless group that flaunts our laws and the rules of common decency. We will see a leader arise from this group that will become the antithesis of what our nation is supposed to be. This can only happen when the majority becomes insensitive to common decency and good moral character. Such insensitivity will allow a ruler to surface who treats people with lawless disregard and who will punish anyone with impunity!
“She mistakenly believed that she could insult people with impunity.” Insults destroy. An attitude that believes insulting others is the right way to treat people is one that harbors a prideful self-image. Such pride will eventually produce a backlash that is harmful. It is detrimental to most relationships except those that are very unbalanced and weak. To insult with an attitude of impunity is asking for serious trouble and is not a good way to get others to respond in a positive manner. To insult people with an attitude of impunity is to alienate most people and will leave you friendless!
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