faith-based


there are some weird things that i canNOT get enough of. one big one: mormons. what is the deal with my obsession with mormons? i grew up in a town with a bunch of them. come to think if it, multiple towns with a bunch of them, if you count pullman. they definitely had mormons there. one of my best friends from being a kid is a mormon. i think she is still. yeah, she has to be. there was this senior when i was a freshman on the ski team who was mormon. i was in LOVE with that boy. he was very cute and a good skier. i think he was kicked out of church in high school. there was some question about unacceptable proclivities.

my good mormon friend though, she was like one of the coolest people in the whole town. her house was always the most fun and we had many many saturday night sleep overs. sometimes that meant going to church on sunday. in case you are in suspense about my own religious upbringing: i was raised an atheist. and i wasn’t shy about it. so maybe that is why church always seems so crazy. like what was REALLY going on? how did all these people know what they were supposed to do at any given moment? then there was the testimonials, where people just got up and free-formed talked about whatever. or was there some theme to these weird speeches? a special language? DID THEY KNOW WHAT THEY WERE SAYING?! anyway, i am tired and not making sense but what i am trying to get across here is that i always found church in general to be exciting and mysterious and always thought there was something especially mysterious about the church of jesus christ of the latter day saints.

of course, under the banner of heaven just made it worse. mormonism in my mind became this distillation of organized religion. first, we can look at its whole history, because it is so new, from outside sources. the deception is documented. in newspapers. the flip flopping on issues like allowing in black people and no longer allowing polygamy can be identified as completely political. don’t people want to know how the direct revelations from a timeless jesus are so swayed by politics? i’m tired. i’m trying to make a point. i’m not sure if it’s working or i even know what that point is meant to be.

i don’t hate mormons or anything, don’t worry. i find them fascinating. it appears to me that there is this mass of people, growing and multiplying, that completely refuse to be part of a world other than their own. this weird little, but growing, culture. and i am friends with them on facebook. these girls my age with 4 babies whose names all either start with the same letter or end with the same sound. what is the deal with this name thing? i am confused and when i google “what is the deal with mormon baby names?” none of the responses are satisfactory.

i sort of believe in the big love-version of this whole thing, where something is lurking beneath the well-manicured lawns and the bleach wipes. today, down the rabbit hole, i found this. (synopsis: utah mormon mom puts two toddlers in deep jacuzzi bathtub and then walks down the hall and starts putting clothes away. youngest baby, 16 months, starts drowning. is down long enough to be blue when the yelling gets mom back to the bathroom. non-responsive at hospital. out of oxygen for at least 10 minutes. life-support. mom blogs. coma. internet community. wakes up and smiles.) it has all the elements. mormon mommy-blogger taking obnoxious photographs. tragedy. redemption. faith. you know these people are just filled up with faith right now. testimonials all over the place. this sounds mean. i always sound mean. and what do i know? i’m basically an old maid at this point and i certainly have no babies. though, let’s get real here, for a minute. i’ve been taking care of kids since i was eleven and even then, when i was eleven and barely responsible enough to trust feeding the cat, i would never have left a baby alone near a sink or a hose, let alone IN A JACUZZI BATHTUB. humans can’t breath in water. end of story.

jesus. i should just rejoice and be grateful with my life and hope nothing this horrible ever happens to me. it’s BUGGING me though. faith in god is not what saves babies from drowning. you don’t need to be vigilant every second, like the mom says somewhere in all the horribly formatted bloggyness i have read on this subject, you just need to not leave your kid unattended in a deep pool of water when he can’t swim! even when he can! i guess i hate the idea that this is an unavoidable accident. and there is the water element, which i am especially fired up about. but even now, i am thinking, if i were surfing with pete, would i ever be able to be under long enough that i drown without him noticing? i just don’t think so. and i was once a grand exalted knight of the sand dunes at camp cleawox. he still watches me with eagle eyes.

there ARE unavoidable accidents and horrible tragedies. haiti, that was pretty much unavoidable. well, avoidable but not for the every day guy on the street who is getting his ass kicked by civil unrest and his environment devoured for cheap fuel and who lives in a shack and definitely can’t afford earthquake retrofits. or the dude going ten miles over the speed limit over the bay bridge on the s-curve with a truck full of pears th
at tipped over the railing and died.
that would have been hard to imagine actually happening before it actually happened, outside of a physics equations.

okay, car are dangerous. i am going to be driving one monday in massachusetts. scary. but i won’t be praying. i will be driving with caution.

i don’t know. i am out of self-righteous steam. my luck now if i ever have a baby it will drown in a bathtub. and of course, i don’t believe in amassing a huge family for the hereafter so i will just have one baby. and i will be old. and it will be over for me completely.

but will i blog about it? jesus fucking christ. let’s hope not.

*** post shower update on all my thoughts*** i was in the shower thinking about why this story aggravates me so much and then i thought, what if this story wasn’t all about a mormon mommy-blogger who does offensive sepia-toned portraiture? what if she was black, for example, without an internet connection, without health insurance? then she wouldn’t be completely in control of her own narrative. then people would be like, who the fuck does she think she is having four kids if she can’t take proper care of them?! take them to foster care, immediately! all i know is from what i have read but i have been around kids and water enough to know that it took that woman a LONG time to get to her son. she like wandered off and started putting away laundry! is she on drugs? if she were black, there would definitely be some questions about drugs and alcohol. i mean, the behavior seems odd and erratic. one minute you are giving your toddlers a bath and the next you are putting away clothes? did she forget where she was? because everyone looks away for a second. but not for five minutes, which is how long she must have been gone for, at least.

weird. fully weird. pete doesn’t want to hear me rave about this so it is down to you passive internet. has anyone made it to the end? have you? what do you think then?

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One comment

  1. Well I wasn't going to comment but then I got to the part asking if anybody made it to the end, so I had to say "here." "Present."Only reason I wasn't going to comment is I'm so sad about that truck driver. He was speeding, but it also seems like somebody also installed a very sharp curve, that didn't used to be there. And I can't even imagine my mom leaving the room while one of her babies was in the tub.

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