Monday, October 17, 2011

Weekend Update

Friday, Melissa had some friends over and we sat around and talked for a little while, but then they left to attend a concert. Melissa and I were trying to come up with something to do, but both of us were fairly exhausted. We didn't want to be lame by going to bed at 9:00 p.m. on a Friday night, so we read from A Compendium of Kisses. Really, Melissa was sleeping and I was cracking up over my inability to read out loud. Butchering words led to more laughter, which led to Melissa waking up long enough to see tears running down my face and her gasping and me wheezing... and finally we decided that we had enough and it was time for bed.

Saturday I woke up for a RS breakfast. We had French toast, which I sort of have a weakness for. And then I didn't do much until I headed up to South Jordan to meet up with Lauren. We went to an improv comedy show. I like improv, and I respect people who are able to be funny on the spot. That's not an easy thing to do. Provo has Comedy Sports, which is big on BYU/LDS culture and has a very defined theme and set up. It has its own venue. Push My Button is not as organized. They perform in a small coffee shop. They rely a little too much on audience participation, which led to some pretty strange and too elaborate prompts. There were some really funny parts, but for the most part, it wasn't that entertaining. They roped me in to "playing a game for prizes", and I won the Halloween trivia (answering 5 out of the 6 questions quicker than my opponent). Only... they gave the runner up a gift card to Applebees, and the winner got two free tickets to their next show.

...Ok.

Anybody want two free tickets to see Push My Button next month? Let me know.

Utah roads are an absolute mess right now. And on my way home from South Jordan, I had to navigate my way through all the detours and orange barrels. It was confusing and frustrating. They had closed the on-ramp to I-15, so I had to go up and around on a road that wasn't clearly marked as the detour, and I was only guessing where I needed to turn. Luckily, I guessed correctly. When I made it to Utah County, they had closed down the highway to one lane, and all I saw was red brake lights, so I decided to get off at American Fork and go down State Street. Unfortunately, I think I picked the worst exit to get off. There were two detours to take you to 500 East and back to the freeway. Then, because of the Haunted Forest, there were hundreds of cars wherever there weren't orange barrels. I got temporarily lost, guessed my way to State Street, and headed home... of course, that took a bit of time because State Street is down to one lane as well. Sigh.

Sunday we had stake conference. Both Melissa and I dragged ourselves there. The first meeting was fairly unremarkable, except, one of the speakers (the wife of one of the high councilmen that serve in our stake, approximately 45-years old) decided to talk to just the girls; she said that she was sad that the guys seem to get ripped in to every general conference, and that they were all great and wonderful and stuff like that. The girls needed a little constructive criticism; according to her, we need to "be less picky and more submissive". She didn't explain enough to know if that is what she actually meant -- if she actually wanted us to go back 200 years before women had rights and were imprisoned in insane asylums for speaking against their husband's ideals (I'm reading a book on one such case right now) or if she just wanted us to.... what? I don't know.

The usher didn't have a hunchback, or a droopy eyelid.    
The second session was better in way of speakers, but worse in the fact that there were a whole lot more distractions. The first meeting met in an auditorium. The second in a double chapel with hard folding chairs and an overheated gym. There was an usher who reminded me of Quasimodo from The Hunchback of Notre Dame...he had really crazy, buggy eyes. And he just walked up and down the gym floor, hunting anyone down who wasn't in a seat and making sure we were packed in there like sardines. We had sad next to a bigger guy from our ward, and spaced the chairs perfectly, and along comes Quasi, and he makes us move down, making everyone uncomfortable and then continued to patrol the area so that we were afraid to move again. We did, though, during the intermediate hymn, finding our original places much more comfortable. He was so distracting, though. And every time he walked by, we wanted to punch him.

The speakers were better this time around. I really do like our stake presidency. They are good men. One of them is actually my mom's old seminary teacher from high school! Crazy, right? He's my favorite. And our stake president is Canadian, and really funny. He stands up and tells us how grateful he is to have his "first wife" in the audience. Then, he had to clarify that she is his only wife. He told us about this weird, old many that used to live in his ward boundaries that they used to make fun of. "We all have trials," he said, "some of us are heavy and weird and that's our trial." He then went on to say that this man moved to be close to the temple in Cardston, Canada, and did some 200,000 ordinances before he died in his early 80s. President Hatch talked about how this man, who didn't have a lot of friends and family on his earthly life, was probably heralded in to heaven by the 200,000 souls he did temple work for. The amount of awe and respect in President Hatch's voice was enough to know that he regretted having made fun of this strange individual, who obviously amounted to much more.

President Hatch also talked about the people that go in to talk to him before they get married, or as individuals, and express fears about the future. I guess it isn't surprising that my peers are all worried about what the world has to offer them. They are afraid to have children because the moral standard of the world continues to decline; the economy is never stable; divorce rates continue to rise; etc. etc. etc. He told us, "You have the brightest of futures of anyone on the history of this earth. You have more good and more joy to look forward to. Yes, there will be trials. But, miracles are born out of trails and sacrifice."

The whole time I was listening to his talk, though, I was thinking that I'm not scared to get married. I'm not scared to have children. I am not worried about how I would support a family -- I know that God sustains us. I am scared about the future, though. Because I'm scared of having a future where I am alone. For some reason, a lonely future sounds neither bright or joyful.

After conference, I went home and made pumpkin pies. They turned out delicious. I know, because I had some for breakfast. I'm pretty pleased with the crust, which we all know is one of the hardest things to pull off, and I didn't over or under bake them. Now, I just have to decide if I am going to share, or if I am going to devour them all up myself.

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