Sunday, February 15, 2015

Pep Talk: "Show 'Em!"

Since this aging jock from Missouri can remember, inside of thy soul has always been a fascination with words and their meaning. In reflection, it seems that love affair was manifested early. As a youth, Scrabble games in Baldwin, Kansas at Aunt Ruth and Grandpa Perry’s were always a blast. Anybody else dig Scrabble? Love that game! 

Ruth Perry is still with us. The former school teacher is going strong north of a century. Can’t see or hear real well but her mind is razor sharp. Admirable.

Anyway, back to the story. I’ve always loved words. Perhaps, the reason for pursuing a career in journalism, writing books, blogs, speaking and all that jazz? I still cherish opening a tattered Oxford American Dictionary and finding the meaning behind a word considered for sharing.

Which, finally, brings me to the point of all this. It’s been interesting to see the reaction to Victory’s “A Stronger Cord” project. It’s about bringing folks together and realizing that, “Hey, we all have our stories of good, bad and ugly. We’re all just a bunch of knuckleheads who believe that by coming together to warm up, work out and hang out, we can sweat, bond and grow. Body, mind and spirit. Exercise. The great stress reducer, connector and equalizer.

Each workout ends with the gathered, in unison, shouting “Knuckleheads!” There are some who are offended. Don’t like that name. For good reason. If you open up a dictionary, the definition makes you pause: “A stupid person.”

Well, this movement of ASC folks realize there are too many isolated, unfit and stressed folks - ourselves among them - in this country. Zip codes don’t matter. We live in missions, mansions and everything in between. The modern-day Knuckleheads are trying to change that grim reality. We sweat, bond and grow.

The men and women participating in ASC workouts have a different definition of the word. We are “fitness-minded, dependable and productive folks who are one step from stupid, heed Solomon’s wise words, unite with others and seek a stronger cord to families, jobs (schools) and communities. That’s an ASC Knucklehead.

This might be way to obvious coming from a Missourian, but what we call ourselves matters little when compared to who were are. Actions speak louder than words, right?

Just my opinion, but it seems this country has lost its sense of humor. We get offended easily. Whether we live in a mission, mansion and somewhere else. It seems, we’ve become a tad thin-skinned. Don’t get me wrong, I’m talking about good-natured humor here, not hurtful and degrading words.

But for folks to get bent out of shape because a group of people are focusing on becoming more fitness-minded, dependable and productive with a passion for developing a stronger cord to families, jobs and communities? And they joke around and call themselves, “Knuckleheads?”

Really? Let’s don’t go there this week. Let’s make sure actions define us and determine how we define others.

Show ‘em!

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