Mark My Words

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There are so many ways we leave our ‘marks’ upon others’ lives and

upon some small part of the world itself. It may be through your

writing, you have touched someone’s mind and heart. It may be by

your creating a painting, taking a photograph,  preparing a special

food dish, making something old, ‘new’ again for someone or. . .

I found the word, “mark” in the dictionary and would like to share

what meanings it has, along with a few expressions that include

various forms of the word, “mark”in them.

 

The definition for ‘mark’-

noun:

1. A visible trace or impression, (line or spot).

2. A symbol, name or other identifier.

3. A name, logo or other indicator.

 

verb:

1. To mark a visible trace or impression, (spot, line or dent).

2. To form, make or depict by making a mark.

3. To supply with natural markings, (a tiger is marked by stripes.)

 

My favorite use of ‘mark’ is the one I used in the beginning. It means

to contribute to others by making our ‘marks.’ This means leaving

our legacy and how we helped make an impression upon another’s

life. There are many books in the library which are ‘marked’ as either

psychology or philosophy. They contain the current meaning and

suggestions for leading a ‘purposeful life.’

 

I enjoyed a pastime in high school and college, along with many

years of going to my youngest brother and  later in life, my two

daughter’s races. The excitement and anticipation of the races,

builds almost like a ‘frenzy,’ when I picture their putting a foot

into a wooden block to ‘mark’ their place.

 

Then, an announcer says these dramatic words:

“On your mark. . .

Get ready,

Set,

Go!”

There are other races, such as cars, horses and drag racing, where

the word, “Go!” are accompanied by a gun shot given to ‘mark’ the

beginning of the race.

 

I have had many dogs in my life, both female and male, ‘mark’ their

territory. This was especially noticeable with my parents’ male dog,

Nicky, who would do this while we were walking in the woods, once

we ‘disembarked’ from their small RV, (actually a Transvan). Nicky

would like to sniff all the other places animals had been ‘marking’

their own parts of the woods.

 

In concert and symphonic band, our musical teacher and director

would ask us to use a pencil to ‘mark’ our parts. Where I sat, I was

in the woodwinds area, with the clarinet section.

 

Since I was always a ‘second row player’ I needed to ‘mark’ a harmony.

Rarely was I able to ‘mark’ the melody.  In marching band, we would

have to count our steps, playing different marching songs, along with

a few popular songs peppered into the mix. We would find our place

on the field or our ‘mark’ before we would perform or make a pattern.

 

If the truth be told, I rarely played the first two games of the season.

I would march trying to be accurate in the precise places I needed

to be. Finally, in the third football game I would be confident in the

way I marched and could play my clarinet.  Two guys, Armin K. and

Mike C., were the only players who ever commented or noticed. Of

course, I had my clarinet in my mouth and looked like I was playing!

 

A side note, I love details about grandparents, so hope you will

appreciate my Grandpa Mattson who would call my clarinet, a

“licorice stick.” This is a popular slang term which some in other

countries may never have heard! I want to tell you I still have my

wooden Selby clarinet and can ‘wet my reed’ and perform simple

songs and scales.

 

If you have a story about music and remember ‘marking’ your place

or listening to the metronome during piano lessons, please share.

 

The younger Mark Ruffalo, with Jennifer Garner was one of my

youngest daughter’s favorite Mark’s in the film, “13 Going on 30.”

My oldest daughter followed, “New Kids on the Block,” band for

a short ‘minute’ and liked Donnie’s brother, Marky Mark (also his

claim to fame was wearing Calvin Klein jeans. We listened to his

band, “Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch’s” version of the Beach

Boys’ song, “Good Vibrations.”

 

There are countless other “Mark’s” such as Mark Harmon who

was a ball player, actor in movies and continues to be in “NCIS.”

 

There was “Mark Anthony,” who Shakespeare focused on, as

well as his being a part of history.

 

Our great American author, Mark Twain left his ‘mark’ upon our

country’s literature. He shared remarkable stories of life upon the

Mississippi and going out West. His wry perspectives of the times

he lived in, along with honest character portrayals made a ‘mark’

upon my thoughts and writing, too.

 

I am sure you can think of other famous Mark’s to add. . .

 

There are many who enjoy the dramatic colors and designs of a

young teenager’s graffiti.  They leave their own distinctive ‘mark’

under bridges, overpasses and other cement or brick walls. I don’t

mind graffiti, as long as it is not upon a historical monument, in

a cemetery where respect should be displayed or designations of

being a member of a  ‘Gang.’

 

I enjoy when my grandchildren take colored chalk and leave their

less than permanent ‘marks’ on sidewalks and the driveway. They

may ‘mark’ their place while playing hopscotch, by putting a rock

down on a square.

 

I did not see this in the definition but do think that ‘marking time’

can be a little like ‘sitting a spell.’ It could include putting slash

‘marks’ on a piece of paper, wall or even ‘marked’ by etching into

a stone wall. The ‘marks’ in prison or concentration camps can

make me weep.

 

When I buy a paperback book at a garage sale or the library

book sale, I don’t ‘value’ some of them as I should. If it is one

of those ‘beach’ or summer reading books, I may ‘mark’ my

page I left off reading by bending back a corner of the page.

Are you guilty of this ‘bad habit?’

 

In our ‘defense,’ sometimes it is easier than getting up to

find a piece of paper or a classy bookmark.

 

Book ‘marks’ can be such lovely decorative gifts. I have my

favorites in my ‘good’ books, which hold or ‘mark’ a special

passage I will read and re-read again. I have a silky one,

a cross-stitched bookmark, a metal one with a pearl-like

decoration and I have one which is in the shape of a paper

clip with a butterfly on the tip.

 

I have marked many passages in my Bible, since I received

it upon my high school graduation. The book has ‘marks’ and

underlined places. Tucked into the pages, there are several

pieces of paper with scribbles made by my children during

church.

 

One is quite funny, a ‘bunny ballerina’ by my oldest daughter

when she was 4 years old. The other is quite serious, drawn

carefully by my youngest daughter at around 8 years old of

Jesus on the Cross.

 

Although it is a name and therefore capitalized, I do like another

part of the Bible, which is in the New Testament which goes like

this: “Matthew, Mark, Luke and John.”

 

I have to close this multiple usages of the word, “mark”

with something I really enjoy.

 

Are

you

ready

for

the

BEST

use

of

‘mark?’

 

I absolutely love going to a store where it has many large signs

after the ending of each season.

These all say, “Mark Down Prices.”

I like the neon yellow, neon orange and even neon green signs

found in different departments.

 

Now, even better than the ‘Markdowns’. . .

are the ‘Slashing Prices!’

 

 

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44 responses »

  1. I played clarinet for a few years (before taking up the saxophone)…one more thing we have in common. I wish my mother had not sold off my baritone sax. I preferred practicing on a tenor sax, but the baritone had a much richer sound.

    I give you high marks for this fun post. 🙂 – Mike

    • I love this ‘high marks’ for the post, Mike!
      I also am amazed at the saxophone playing Mike. This is a more challenging and difficult instrument. I wish I could have learned but my ability to play an average clarinet was about all I could manage. My one brother played the trombone, the other a cornet and trumpet, so one year when I was a senior we were all in marching band together! Fun memories and so thankful you added your two cents to this, too!

      • Except for the weight on the neck strap, the saxophone was easier than clarinet because you don’t need as strong an umberture for the saxophone. On the other hand, clarinet players have much better endurance for kissing. 🙂

  2. I am the best use of mark I know, Robin. 🙂 😉 ❤ Thanks of this wonderful post on this magnificent word. You are right on the mark.

    I remember the clarinet being called the licorice stick, Robin. And the one year I played the saxophone, in the sixth grade, I remember having to "wet my reed," too. Joy of sax! I never learned how to read music, though, and free-lancing was frowned upon.

    • I was not very good at playing but really liked being part of band.
      I am sure you had ‘an ear’ for music, which I didn’t!
      I also thought of you, but wasn’t sure how many times I should recommend people checking out your blog, Mark! You are my favorite blogging friend named Mark (oh, yeah, like your grandmother I only know one Mark here! Your grandmother and grandfather only had one favorite boy! ha ha!)
      I love the smiles and heart, too. Thanks for this and you are a great Mark!

    • Oh, thanks for the reminder and addition to this post, Jenny. I agree this is a great use of ‘marking’ papers but it is time consuming. I used to have to ‘mark’ papers in my Language Arts classes of 4th-6th graders. It is hard sometimes, especially when I wish to grade on effort, too. So glad you don’t have to do this, Jenny.

  3. I give you high marks for your post…thanks for stopping by my blog as well. I will follow you and see what else you are up to. I am 53 and know what dating after 50 is all about….in between hot flashes!!

    • I am chuckling about the hot flashes and dating after 50! Did you see I included you on my awards post? I am not sure if I told you that it is called, Premio Dardos award nominations. I used to love getting on these lists since then others come to visit. Now, it does seem timeconsuming but still worth the effort to accept. Do as you like with your way of accepting your nomination and so glad we are connected!

  4. A wonderful and thorough exploration Robin 🙂 I’m with you, leaving a ‘mark’; something of ourselves for our children or dear ones is a driving force for me. And of course who doesn’t like the sales! row upon row of goods at marked down prices 🙂

      • You are welcome, Yolanda. I have been away at my Mom’s and must get to reading my friends’ blogs and finish up my comments, too. The library ‘cut me off’ the computer even before I finished all my comments yesterday.
        I am smiling at your expressing row upon row of goods with marked down prices. This formed such a fun picture in my mind.

  5. just don’t let the grandchildren mark the sidewalks in orlando or the mayor will put them in jail for 2 weeks…i could not play the flute & march .i don’t know how people do it. maybe it’s b/c i didn’t get a flute until 11th grade ,everyone else in 6th or maybe b/c he made me march on the 50 yard line

      • I was running out of time yesterday so I wrote this rather obscurely. I am smiling at your admission of not being able to do this back in 11th grade, I didn’t admit it until my 20th high school reunion!
        Sorry about your having to march on the 50 yard line.
        I meant to say something about the chalk on sidewalks in Orlando. This was a great news item to insert here in the comments. I had not heard of this strange mayor and his ordinance! Wow, talking about the punishment not measuring the “crime.”

    • Jill, I am sure if you were looking at the way I commented on this post, you would wonder why the ones who were last got their responses! I didn’t realize how close to 9 p.m. it was yesterday when I began writing my replies. I am sorry that you were one of the ones who didn’t get one…
      Anyway, I am chuckling since the reeds did turn green when they were put away wet. I would try to leave the little plastic container ‘ajar’ to let the air in to dry. This didn’t always work out well!
      I liked the mark your word about the post, Jill. Thank you for both this comment and the picture of my lime green edged reed!

  6. This is a hallmark example of your wonderful works Robin! And I have to say that I love the follow up remarks regarding all of the best uses of marks there are. Including the Mark-iest of all of your commenters, our buddy Mark! 🙂

    • Thank you, Colleen for the compliment. I did not think about replying to the comments in a manner which respected ‘first come, first serve.’ I just started at the top of the page yesterday evening and ran out of time. The 8:45 announcement went off and I started to write shorter and shorter comments until the 8:55 computer’s timed out. (9:00 p.m. and I went home sad because I saw several nice people here with comments.
      I am smiling at the integration of ‘hall’ and ‘mark’ which really is a nicely chosen play on the word of ‘mark!’ And yes, it occurred to me, that Mark Bialczak was worthy of a ‘shout out.’ He is the Mark-iest of all! Smiles!

      • 🙂 He is indeed! It’s difficult to get all comments responded to Robin. No worries. Some days I just can’t keep up. Like today, I’m still working on comments from yesterday morning. Between work, writing, reading other blogs, actually talking to people face to face, eating/sleeping and commenting, I seem to never stop some days. 🙂 I love it but it’s hard to keep up some times. 🙂

      • I like this point where we are commisserating, but also feeling lucky we have great commenters and blogs to read… Thanks, Colleen for this lovely set of comments. Going backwards, I found this and am not sure I really let you know what this meant to me (about not always being caught up with our blogging…) hugs and smiles!

  7. Really loved your thoughts about “mark” – my cousin’s name is Mark, but on the other hand I never really hit the mark when playing piano or guitar or the flute – I guess I am not that very talented in music. But I do mark when I read an interesting book, and I quite like to make re-marks about things that touch, upset or concern me…:-) And I always notice your kind re-marks on my blog. Thank you! 🙂

    • Eva, so sweet you are, using the word ‘mark’ in so many different ways. Your cousin Mark I hope is a great friend, too. I like the name and have met many nice guys with it. I am smiling at your admission about not really hitting the ‘mark’ on various instruments, too. I don’t have ‘an ear’ for music but tried my best!
      I wondered if anyone else ‘marked’ their place or left ‘marks’ in interesting books. Your response was the only one in this area of my post. Most of all, Eva, I am so glad you notice my remarks and find they please you. You have such lovely artwork, along with poetry and good writing displayed on your blog.

    • I should have taken the time to include all of the Marks who are so nice to comment on my blog. Also, ones who have been faithful and true, despite my not always getting around to writing my replies in a timely manner.
      You are most gracious and thank you for saying you enjoyed this post, Mark!

  8. It’s amazing how deep a mark this post has left on me, whenever I hear the word ‘mark’ from now on, I’m bound to think of your post 🙂 Oh and I too am guilty of marking a page by bending its corner.

  9. You covered plenty territory Robin. Did you leave anything out? In some parts of the world, people have facial marks. Years and years ago, some were quite elaborate and identified the ‘marked’ person as belonging to a particular tribe.

    • This is a lovely addition, Timi, to my post about ‘marks.’ You are so great at thinking ‘outside the box,’ and remembering historical facial markings. Tribes and other cultures use markings to denote ‘belonging.’ This made me think of the red dot on the forehead of a person (is it always a woman?) in India, or decorated faces or bodies, sometimes painted with henna or natural paints. It also could be used in Native American tribes to be designating the tribe is going on a ‘war path.’ Look how you got me thinking and expanding the dimension of the word, ‘mark,’ to be much more interesting. Thank you so very much, Timi.

  10. You are leaving your mark, and you are collecting Marks (in your comments). LOL Another great one, Robin!! Always fun to swing by and see what’s on your mind. No dating news in a long time, though, unless I missed it. Is that in hiatus?

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