Jul 27, 2011

Tales from a TRAX Rider: Protestors

Yesterday was another adventure riding the UTA!

I stayed at work late to finish a project I had been working on. I get out to my stop about 35 minutes later than usually. The other line's train pulled up. And there it sat. And sat. And sat. For about 45 minutes it sat there! Meanwhile, my train is at the previous stop, right where I can see it. Finally the conductor comes out and says that they are trying to get everything started up again and the trains should be moving soon.

"You know what the problem is?" asks the unbelievable short man next to me.

"Yeah, apparently there is a protest at the courthouse," the conductor said. "Some of the protestors where sitting on the tracks. But they got the police there now."

Um, protestors? Sitting on the tracks? Are you kidding me?! I'm all for the right to assemble, but do they really have to ruin everyone else's day? I was already an hour late, I was hungry, I was tired, and I was grumpy.

Finally the other train moved and mine pulled up. Getting on, I just happen to get on the same car as that guy. You know the kind: the guy that complains about something without having all the information, and talks with a loud annoying voice to anyone who is polite enough to not ignore him. With my low blood sugar, headache, and exhaustion, I wanted nothing more for him to shut up.

He didn't, and just my luck, he stayed on until the last stop, which is also mine.

I finally got home two hours after I left the office.

Jul 21, 2011

Being a Teenager

You remember being a teenager, right? Mood swings, acne, awkwardness, low self-esteem . . . yeah, it sucked. And yet, there are times in life when we revert back to being a teenager.

Like that middle aged guy in the fancy car. Fantasy car+the money to finally buy it+the need to be young again.

For me, I feel like I revert back to being a teenager whenever a big change comes into my life. Which I have been dealing with the past 7 months as I have transitioned from college student to intern. To intern. It probably doesn't help that I am back to living with my parents.

My life seems to be in a constant state of flux, which makes it hard to settle into this change. Every four months my life has changed.

My emotions seem to go from high to low quickly, just like when I was a teenager. I'm so self-concious, more so than when I was in school. It's like trying to discover a whole new me, and it's strange and, really, a bit uncomfortable.

I can't wait until things get a bit more settled and I can stop feeling like a teenager and more like my age--which is somewhere between not grown up and adult.

Jul 17, 2011

Sunday Special: It's a Choice

One of the main things I hear against the LDS Church (Mormonism) is that it's members follow blindly without making any of their own decisions.

I think that this idea comes from many things. One is that people just don't understand our religion. They don't care enough to really learn about what we preach.

Another reason, I believe, is that it is the faults of the members.

Don't get me wrong. I don't think that anyone who truly loves this gospel ever willfully misrepresents our church. But I think that we live in a world where we feel like we have to make excuses for ourselves, no matter who we are or what we believe.

"I can't . . . I'm Mormon."
There was this t-shirt company that started making these "I can't . . . I'm Mormon" shirts awhile back. While I can see the humor in them, I think that this phrase perfectly illustrates what I'm trying to say; which is that sometimes we use our religion as an excuse.

By saying that we "can't" makes it seem like we are either ashamed of our religion or using it to take the easy way out. Is it a wonder that people think we let our religion rule our lives? We should be having our religion guide our lives. Instead of "I can't," it should be, "I don't."

What is wrong with just saying, "I don't drink coffee. I don't smoke. I don't drink, etc."? I almost feel like we are putting down our religion when we say "I can't."

Why do you follow the gospel?
I guess it really comes to your attitude. Do you follow the standards, doctrines, and principles of the gospel because you have to or because you choose to?

I hope that everyone lives the gospel because they choose to, not because they feel obligated. I hope they live it because they love God and Christ and they see that their lives will be better for it.

I don't drink alcohol just because I was told not too. I don't drink because, based on my religious beliefs, I have chosen not too. There is really nothing holding me back--I am over the legal drinking limit. But I have chosen not too.

It's a choice. And we should make it seem like we have made that choice--not just following blindly.

Jul 9, 2011

Memory Quilt, Part 3

Sorry this has taken so long.

Now that you have squares done, put them in the order you want.
Then it is back to pressing seams!
And pinning!
Then you sew the squares together in a row.
Then you press and pin and sew all the rows together. After that press and pin and sew even more until all the rows are together into one big quilt top:
All that's left is picking out batting and a back, then tying the quilt and finishing it off.

Jul 3, 2011

Not Just a Summer Thing

For the past five years (and probably more), summer was when I had to do all my "fun" reading. My mom (a librarian) would bring home a box of books, and I'd borrow them from her all summer long, as well as reading my favorites again and suggestions from friends.

This summer I have felt very anxious about getting all the reading down I want to this summer. I've got all these books I've got to get through, plus others that I want to read again. And then I realized something:

I can read all year long now!

I am no longer confined to summer to get all the reading done that I want to. It is hard to wrap my mind around this concept. I don't have to give it up to read books for class, and do my homework.

Pretty exciting discovery.

Jul 1, 2011

Being an LDS Single

I was source checking in old Ensigns a couple of weeks ago when I came across a gem of an article in an old 1980s issue. I have no idea the name, year, or issue it was in, but it was pretty great. This article discussed the correct way to interact with single members of the Church. Imagine, if you will, that Steve Irwin did an episode on the Discovery Channel about LDS Singles. It would go a little something like this:

Steve: Here we can see the LDS Single in its natural habitat. Now, it's looking pretty tame right now, but just wait and see what happens when we start asking intrusive questions about its love life. Oh, this is going to be fun!

That was basically what the article was like . . . acting as if we LDS Singles are a different species and the "marrieds" don't quite know how to act around us. We are still just people! And members of the Church!

That being said, the article did make some good points. Like, you probably shouldn't say the following things to someone who is single:

"But you're so pretty/handsome! How can you not be married?"

"My wife's brother is single. You should go out!" (The second councilor in my bishopric said this. During a temple recommend interview.)

"So are you married? Why not?"

"Are you dating anyone? Better get on it!" (A bishop said this to me. When I was 19.)

"You have to stop being so picky . . . "

"You aren't getting any younger."

"Don't you want to get married?"

"Temple marriage is necessary to get into the Celestial Kingdom." (Yes, I have heard this. To clear this up, it is only necessary for exaltation, not admittance to the Celestial Kingdom.)

Here's a little advice, if you are truly nervous about talking to an LDS single. We have jobs, hobbies, and even families. There are plenty of subjects to talk about without bringing up the fact that they are single. If they bring it up, follow their lead.