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Location: Clearwater, South Carolina, United States

Tuesday, November 22, 2005


A word that is massively overused in sports and TV “reality” performances is “xtreme”. My computer’s spell check doesn’t like this word at all and I’m not so sure I do either. That spelling of the word was not to be found in any dictionary available to me.

The word extreme is defined in many ways, and means about the same as: severe, intense, excessive, immoderate, extraordinary, exaggerated, radical, outrageous, excessive degree and even to the nth degree. Of course I knew all those meanings and assumed the “xtreme” word meant the same and even more - but the question came to mind – why did they take the “e” out of the original word?

What could that “e” have stood for that by removing it made the word – and the actions it described - more wild and crazy? These “xtreme” sports and reality shows are not my normal TV fare but I have seen just a few minutes of many of them and think I have come up with an answer to my own question.

Of the many words that begin with an “e”, the two that symbolize what was left out of xtreme are elucidation and explanation. This because the actions involved go way beyond what could be clarified or explained – at least to my mind and reasoning.

I would not make a good contestant on the “reality” shows because I would want know if the roaches, or worms, or whatever weird creature I was eating was properly cooked and/or sanitized. After all, there are laws about the contents and preparation of the “food” we eat.

The shows are constantly finding new, more “xtreme”, stunts in which to involve folks that will do most anything for money, thrills and/or their 5 minutes in the spotlight. If they wanted real danger and thrills, they could try the stunts without those safety harnesses – hey, they could throw in a complete funeral service as one of the prizes.

Even some of the so-called sports, not considered “xtreme”, are deemed so by me. How else can I explain to myself about jumping out of a perfectly good airplane and not opening the parachute until much later. Also the striving to fly with a machine that is not designed for that purpose – doing aerial acrobatics and flips on a bike or even a motorcycle. That really is jumping to contusions!

Now I enjoy reading history about many things, but it seems to me that the personal history of the participants of these and some of the other weird sports would be too short to be an interesting read. Consider though that this writing does come from one that has never – at least on purpose – dared God to kill him.

For those of you wondering about the definition of old fogy, it means an extremely old-fashioned or conservative person. Maybe I am one of these or maybe I just don’t enjoy the cuts, bruises, sprains and strains as much as I used to. Maybe the ladder fall of ’03 brought me down to earth in more ways than one.

If you are one that enjoys these very daring sports, I will not openly question your wisdom or sanity – although my aspiration is that your soul is right with God – this because other parts of your anatomy might possibly become spare parts for somebody else. That or the atoms of your flesh might become intermingled with those of concrete, asphalt or even with mother earth after the big splat – because gravity still works - every time.

The most extreme or “xtreme” and exciting life that can be lived is the one of the Christian. Not just in name only or in church pew occupying, but in a radically forgiven relationship with Jesus that offers a breath taking, heart racing, soul energizing, almost incomprehensible joy – in its purest form. Even the best of anything else comes in a very poor second. Jesus placed this awesome LIFE in the realm of our choice because of the sacrifice He made – but we are the ones that have to choose. ec


Blogger Jay Kennedy said...

Great point! I think the most "xtreme" thing that this world could see right now is some spelling and grammar. That would be incredibly EXTREME!

11/22/2005 10:21:00 AM  
Blogger mreddie said...

Jay - Thanks for stopping by, keep us posted on the new job. ec

11/22/2005 03:08:00 PM  
Blogger Anvilcloud said...

Reality and Xtreme tv is not to my taste either. Except for the Idol shows, both American and Canadian.

11/22/2005 04:15:00 PM  
Blogger mreddie said...

AC - Thanks for stopping by. ec

11/22/2005 06:31:00 PM  
Blogger ann said...

"Dangerous, wild, unfettered and free" - my favorite description of our God.

You're absolutely right (as though you need me to tell you so!) about the Christian life. So many people these days, and throughout the ages, I assume, water it down to sitting in a pew on Sunday morning. But there is so much more!

Truly living your life for Christ requires everything. C.S. Lewis asked this question in Mere Christianity - How much of myself must I give? The answer? Everything. If you don't think that's wild, crazy, scary stuff, then I suggest, no, I highly encourage you to look again.

Jesus offers life - a wild, crazy adventure with Him. If any of you have not experienced this life - give it a shot. I guarantee it'll get your blood pumping and your heart racing - and it will definitely cost you yours... and it's awesome - xtreme even.

11/22/2005 07:24:00 PM  
Blogger mreddie said...

Thanks for the comment and for the excitement - there is something to be excited about. ec

11/22/2005 11:00:00 PM  

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