Whew. New post. With original content. And hopefully it's good.
I try not to delude myself into thinking that more than a dozen people read this little blog. And I know that if more people read it, it's because they like sports or want Arwyn's brilliant insights.
But, in case you came for me--any new readers who may have followed from discussion of BoH's "Greg": yes, I am not Mormon and I write about it. Sometimes. My thoughts are complicated/convoluted, so don't ask me why. Okay, you can ask, but I'm going to give you a flippant answer. (Answer #1: Mormon girls are HOT!
Anymore, online is the only place where I hang out with the Mormons. It's been over a year since I last went to Church. (I might make a post on 'why' later.) When I was going to Church, I made a few friends, but they either moved or got
a ball and chain
I like hanging out with my Mormon friends, but the difference in our lifestyles make it difficult sometimes. If I'm involved in throwing a party, for example, it'll probably involve lots of drinking. (Almost all my friends are grad students--what do you expect?) While it is possible to find Mormons that are willing to attend these type of parties, it tends to be kinda rare.
Besides, there's an extra problem: me. Without getting into any detail, there's the side of me that leans toward the Church--which is what I show members, and the side that is in "The World." So, mixed-group gettogethers are tricky. Especially because I don't know how well my non-Mormon and Mormon friends would get along.
It's not too bad, though. I mostly hang out with all Mormons or all non-Mormons.
Hangin' out with the Mormons poses it's own problems:
1) I have what may be described as a "dirty, dirty mouth." I admit it, I love swearing. I think it's great. Unfortunately, most Mormons don't like it. So I try to stop. I've gotten better at it, but there's still some times where I can't get around it--it just doesn't sound right. And using pseudo-swears like "freakin'" just makes you sound like a goshdarn fool.
2) I lack shared experiences. I have an okay idea what it's like to be a Mormon, but there are many many areas that I have no clue about. Conversion stories
, for instance. Or the general "growing up Mormon". (Dude, I did take seminary, so I at least got that!)
2b) And if I don't know everyone, it will occasionally get out that I am, in fact, an evil no-good gentile.
2c) Seriously, though, there seems to be some uncomfortableness. Much of it is my own uneasiness (feeling I don't belong, feeling that I shouldn't pollute their righteousness). Occasionally it's because some Mormons don't know how to deal with what I stand for. There aren't many of us in the middle, between the Church and Secular life.
3) Not only that, but my experiences are quite different. For instance, my favorite story from college is what we call "The Porn Story". You can see why this might pose a problem. Also, Mormons don't seem that impressed when I brag about how I put down 24 beers in 4 1/2 hours. (Uh, that's true, in case anyone actually is impressed by that not-so-little feat.)
4) Speaking of, have you ever been to a Mormon party? I have. That was the first time I had ever played any parlor game in life. Wow. Not that it was bad, just that I was so totally out of my element. It's like I didn't understand English: "You want me to... c'mon, you gotta be kidding
Nah; Mormons are, by and large, pretty great people and I like hanging out and talking with them. (Of course, it could simply be that the Mormons that'll put up with me are great people.) This means you, of course.