Train tracks always make me think of routes and journeys (and country music, but that's a different blog post).
Train tracks always make me think of routes and journeys (and country music, but that’s a different blog post).

What route are you taking to get to the root of the problem?

Taking a hand (fingers?) at this week’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt from Linda Hill, which is: Route/Root, use either/both however the hell you want.

Route is one of those funny words that I will sometimes pronounce “rowt” and sometimes as “root.” I think it can go either way, pronunciation-wise (hmmm, should we call these bisexual words? Anyway.)

Be right back . . .

Even though I’ve worked my entire life with the Internet at my fingertips, I still will just not look easy things up. Trying to break that habit and just check Webster to find that assumption is correct – rut or raut both work. Love it when I’m right.

But root is never pronounced “raut.” English really is a bizarre language, at least we don’t have to worry about masculine or feminine words (and articles for those words) or splitting verbs like in German.

Route is a word that I hardly ever use, now that I think about it. When talking about a trip, I’ll usually say/think “which way are you going to go” or “how you going to get there.”

Route just seems so formal to me. Parades have routes. Trains and trucks have routes. Ships have routes across the ocean. I’m sure the Secret Service plan out routes for the presidents as they move from point A to point B. In the military, route also seems to be used a lot – route of attack, approach, and so on.

For just driving somewhere, I don’t need a route I just need some directions.

The word does make me think of road trips and traveling. I love a good road trip (best road trip food ever – Smart Pop White Cheddar Popcorn. Sunflower seeds are a very close second.). Thinking I need to plan a little road trip to Gettysburg, Antietam, or maybe even Chancellorsville. It’s been a few months since the last Civil War battlefield, so I’m due. Also thinking a road trip to Valley Forge is in order this year and maybe even branching out to a Revolutionary War battlefield visit (it’s been years since King’s Mountain and Cowpens, the only two I’ve ever been too).

I said route both ways in my head the entire time I was typing that. I’ve now said the word so much that my brain is refusing to attach any meaning to the sound any longer.

Think I’ve tapped that one out. Time to take a different route.

The Root of All Evil

I’m not going to actually talk about that, because it’s Saturday at 6 and that’s just waaaaay too philosophical for now. I do like that phrase though. Is it pride? Money? Arrogance? Self-interest? Who knows, probably no one single root of all evil. And, I’m not religious, so certainly isn’t the Devil. Now, according to the Bible, God gave free will and created the Devil, a fallen angel. So, I guess, in a way, God would be the root of all evil if you really want to go far enough back to the source.

Where’d that come from? Stream of consciousness indeed!

Too often, we look at the surface level of issues and problems and try to fix those without working on the underlying root causes. I like to break things down to the essentials when thinking about anything. What are the roots? What’s the basic idea?

Only once you understand that can you really start moving forward and understand whatever it is you’re trying to figure out – issue in a relationship, health issues, motivation to work hard/not work hard – whatever it is, drill down to the core, the root, the bedrock, whatever word you want to use and you’ll make better progress for whatever it is you’re doing.

Wish I had figured that out early in my life. Plus, once I did figure it out – it’s been a good while now – I wish I had had the discipline to apply it to my own life. As they say, better late than never.

And that’s my 20 minute allotted time. With an extra 30 or so minutes in there because I kept watching multiple football games – come on Northern Illinois, take down the Ohio St. money factory. I do love it when a small school shocks one of the big ones.


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