Monthly Archives: June 2017

Don’t Suffer Fools Gladly

Shakespeare came to mind when I first saw this ambiguous phrase, but it is not his at all. Actually, it comes from the Bible. Saint Paul was writing a letter to the Corinthians and using sarcasm, wrote, “for you suffer fools gladly, seeing yourself as wise” (IICorinthians 11:19). There needs to be a little history explained to get the full meaning. About 2000 years ago Corinth was a real fleshpot (if you know what I mean), and in them being of their ways, when the false apostles came to them, they rather listened to the false news than the teachings he/Paul preached about how to live their life according to Jesus Christ.

That sounds about right to me. Humans are humans and it’s easier to follow the ways we have engrained in us than to accept something new or foreign from what we have practiced. So, Paul, must have asked them to refrain from all their fleshly desires, and, well, you know how that goes…Shoot, most of us can not or had an extraordinarily hard time quitting cigarettes, let alone the ways of the flesh. And Paul wants us to what??? I will listen to the other guy down the street who says I can do everything I am used to doing, not change my ways, but feel guilty knowing there is more; I just don’t want to change anything. That sounds pretty human to me.

w-shakespeare-jesterNow take that phrase and fast forward about 2000 years to present day society. So, we now know where it came from, but the phrase means something different.

Today, people use the term freely when they are disgusted with people they think are stupid, fools, or beneath them in the social spectrum. Oops, there comes the second half of the quote “…seeing yourself as wise.”

But it can mean something a bit different. There are lists of celebrities who do not suffer fools gladly — such as Paul McCartney said that of Harrison when he died. I doubt that Steve Jobs had time to put up with fools or foolish ways. Al Gore was among the lists of influential people I found — and I strongly agree that he has no time to put up with foolish ways. He is on a mission, a climate mission, and his every minute counts to get his message out. The list continues with all people who have no time in their life for fools and their foolish ways. In America, we are a work driven nation and we basically have no time for what is not on the agenda. What needs to be accomplished is of utmost importance.

I will leave you with what G.K. Chesterton (an English writer known as the “prince of paradox”) said on the subject: “When you’re with fools, laugh with them and at them simultaneously.”

And then there is Darwin — he wrote “Do not laugh at the less evolved for they are trying their best with limted mental resources.”

I really don’t think Saint Paul meant all this when he wrote to the Corinthians. I think he said you think you are so darn smart but look at you following the fool rather than the truth. What do you think?

Have a great one…



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Fire at Will

I made a mistake on Friday when I wrote about Fire it Up, Will. That is not what the ad said. After seeing the ad again on TV, I paid more attention and the birds were saying “Fire at Will.” Or, at least I think that is what they were saying. The thing is that people only retain about half of what they hear, and then lose another half of that within the first couple of days. So much for me writing about what I hear on TV because I am not hearing half of what I thought I heard. There are three words in Fire at Will, I thought I heard Fire it up Will. And there is a world of difference in the meaning of those two phrases. So, I did hear a half of what I heard, “Fire” and “Will”. And on Friday I thought the rest of it was “it up” when in actuality it was only “at”.


Without going into what I wrote on about Fire it up Will, Fire at will is a military term when cannonballs were used. Apparently, some men were better at loading the cannons than others and after the generals realized this, they wanted the speedy military men to fire when they were ready instead of having to wait until everyone was ready, so the generals gave the orders to fire at will, allowing those men to fire at their discretion when they were ready.

Now, I don’t think that the birds were meant to be say to go ahead and shoot a gun (or cannonball) so, this other bird is insinuating that the unknown person in the clip may mean fire at Will (the man). Poor Will! So, really, what was the ad saying.

I think that this is just about as confusing as the ad — first off, I did not hear all the words, then is it to fire at your will or is it to fire at Will. Either way, if you are confused, I am even more so. I will remember the ad because I have made such a big deal of it in my mind, but who knows what I will ever remember about it in a month from now. By then, the birds could become people, the wire they were sitting on may become vehicles, and they may be saying shoot them up boys. So much for believing what you see or what you hear. What’s that old saying — believe a half of what you see and a quarter of what you hear. Now, I believe that…

As for tv commercials, there is nothing like the iconic “Where’s the Beef?” Plain, simple and demonstrative because the woman opened the hamburger bun to show you there was more bun than beef.

Have a great one…


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Fire It Up

I will start by confessing I heard this phrase on a Geico commercial and thought it was really cute. There were these birds on a wire talking to one another. One said, “Fire it up, Will.” The other bird said something like how do you know it’s Will. Another said, it’s not Will. Then the word Geico appeared.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAFire it up — you would think it would have to do with a car, or maybe the cannonballs of old. But once I started searching this idiom it has nothing to do with either of these ideas. Wait for it — I was shocked. Fire it up refers to shooting a drug into your vein, or to begin smoking marijuana. Say what!!!???

I looked further, trying to associate the phrase with cars — you know, starting the motor, getting ready to go at a high speed like the NASCAR cars do. They say, fire your motors, but upon thinking about what they say, it’s not fire it up or fire your motors at all, it’s “Gentlemen (or Drivers), start your engines.”  Ah, how we substitute one phrase for another because we think it sounds similar and therefore the meaning should be similar, but come to find out we really do not know what it really means. And the definition — totally different from what we could ever expect.

Now, don’t get fire it up confused with fired up. When you are fired up your feelings are aroused or excited — think of passion, or it could mean to begin to smoke, which would bring us back to fire it up. You are not going to fire up your passion, but your passion will be fired up. Think about someone who really believes in an idea and is willing to give time, energy and money towards that passion, that person is fired up. Excited, aroused. Willing to give. That person is fired up.

Back to fire it up. In my search, I found many a song with the title of Fire It Up, and the majority of them tell stories of drugs, and then there is Joe Cocker’s version. His is the only lyrics that had nothing to do with drugs — he tells the story of a broken heart and he urges the broken heart to let love be fired up again.

I wonder if those who created the ad understood that the definition of fire it up deals with drugs. I wonder if Geico knows. Cute commercial, really cute, but now every time I see that commercial, I am going to wonder about Will…what is really going on away from the wire the birds are sitting on….

And if anyone can find me another definition for fire it up besides dealing with drugs, please share and where did you find it.

Until next time…have a great one…

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