Monday, September 20, 2004

9/20/82 (or, Happy Birthday, Adam!)

Dooce -- a fellow recovered and radically reformed Mormon -- just reminded me of the time the Mormon missionaries from our church (two fine young corn fed Iowans, if I remember correctly - not even 20, so my brother is actually older now than they were then)came over for dinner, before our sister was born and Adam couldn't have been older than 2 or 3.

Missionaries coming over for dinner were not a huge deal. It's kind of expected among Mormons that you help these guys out, take them under your wing, cause gosh golly they sure don't know how to cook for themselves! (That, after all, would be women's work. The Mormons are very big on sex roles.) So, once every couple of weeks or so, we'd have a pair of gangly, earnest young men over to dinner.

This particular night must have been some kind of brought-to-you-by-Ortega tex-mex theme, because there were black olives and hot sauce on the table.

Adam, at 3, had a special passion for black olives that I can only compare to how adult Mormons must feel about their holy underwear. One of the elders -- I have no idea how anybody called the midwestern gangly still battling teen acne missionaries "elder" without guffawing all over their proffered Books of Mormon -- noted Adam's zeal and did what you'd expect some gawky 19 year old from Iowa to (not, however, what you'd expect someone referred to as "Elder")do. He dipped an olive in the hot sauce and gave it to my brother.

Now, my brother was a quiet, mellow, stoic kid. Still is. He wasn't one of those whiny crybabies; he sucked it up when he got hurt, and he couldn't care less if mom & dad left us with a babysitter. But this hot-sauced olive from hell made his little face contort into a magenta tinged replica of "The Scream", a position he held for a full ten minutes at least before he sucked in sufficient air to release THE LOUDEST HIGHEST PITCHED WAIL THAT EVER MADE A MORMON MISIONARY FEAR THE THREAT OF OUTER DARKNESS. And Adam has never enjoyed spicy food since.

Happy 22nd Birthday, Adam! Ain't it great to be a heathen?


At 1:26 AM, Blogger Brooks said...

Mormons kind creep me out a little. I don't know why.
How do the Google ads work. I've been clicking them a bunch of time on your blog, but I assume they only count me once, right?

Brooks Blog

At 1:47 PM, Blogger Audacity said...

My brother converted to Mormonism a few years ago for his girlfriend. He even gave up alcohol! But, nicotine finally did him in.. and she broke up with him because he wouldn't quit smoking. So now he's back to drinking and chain-smoking, but at least he's not a Mormon anymore. (Though I think I would prefer the opposite)

Jen's Blog

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