Sunday, September 7, 2008

Getting Back to What I do Best: Humiliate Myself at Church

So, I'm sure you are all DYING to know what I ended up doing with my free evening. But do you really HAVE to guess? Yes, I ate ice cream in the tub. It worked out rather well, but there were a few kinks to iron out, so I tried it again on Saturday night. I think one more trial run ought to get me there. It's kind of a tricky balancing act, and you definitely need water to go with your ice cream (it makes you so thirsty sitting in hot water AND eating cold ice cream), which requires some sort of table to put everything on. Then, if you are a bath tub reader, as I am, you need a way to finesse the book-holding/bowl and spoon operating activities that COULD lead you down a path to total disaster, i.e., dropping BOTH book AND bowl into the water and ruining your evening. Sigh. It's going to take some more practice.

But what I want to talk about is how I am getting back to my roots by embarrassing myself at church. It's been a while since I did something humiliating at church. I'm not sure why I've been so out of touch with myself. It's probably because we've moved around a lot and so I have kept a low profile. But we are in this ward for keeps, and so it's really important to me to make friends and get a nice reputation as a funny, awesome person, which leads to sweaty, frantic talking and sarcastic remarks that people don't realize are sarcastic. Sigh. Socializing is going to take A LOT more practice than eating ice cream in the tub.

So I was asked to participate in an object lesson in Relief Society. I was embarrassed. I was preoccupied with the food storage sign up sheet I was holding in my hands when they called on me. I was still pondering the benefits of dehydrated eggs, so I didn't really listen to the instructions for the activity. I was SUPPOSED to talk to the teacher and stop the conversation when I thought thirty seconds had gone by. One minute and forty five seconds later, the teacher stopped me from talking and said "don't you think thirty seconds have passed yet?" "Oh, TOTALLY," I said. In my defense, I am too young to remember this game that apparently was a smash hit on the Art Linklater show.

Then, after this embarrassing little incident, I had an even WORSE exchange with my target friend. You know how you pick out people that you want to be friends with? My criteria are simple: they must dress well, look pretty, and not be cheesy. I usually know if I want to be friends with someone if they are wearing snakeskin heels or if they have pretty blond hair, or if they make a good remark in a lesson. I'm not proud of my shallowness. But there you have it. At least I target those who are more beautiful than I am so that I can always be "the ugly one" when we are together. I'm a giving person. Anywho... so we were talking about how big Ruby is and she said her daughter was big and she acted like she was starting to wonder about it, and I said "yeah, should you be worried..." and I just was echoing her sentiment. I wasn't literally ASKING her if she should worry. OF COURSE I know she shouldn't worry about a thing like that. But she didn't understand my sarcasm, and said "well, no. I'm not worried." It was horrible, how I must have sounded. So now, my target friend, who is so pretty and dresses so well, thinks I believe her daughter to be morbidly obese.

And that, my friends, is how I do church.


  1. Having conversations is hard. (I haven't mastered it yet.) And then the one bit of concrete advice you ever get, "echo their sentiments," comes back to bite you.

    Yes, should you worry that you made a fool of yourself?

  2. Yes, you should have made a fool of yourself. It attracts snakeskin wearing peeps. Plus, you don't want them to realize how smart you are straight out of the gate or they might be too intimidated.

  3. They make bath tub versions of a tv tray. It lays across the tub and is about 8 inches wide. I saw them once at Linens and Things and can't seem to find one now that I need it. I mention this to you, because if you CAN find one. It will hold the ice cream and you can prop the book on it.

    I gave up conversation long ago, now I just try to see how many times I CAN put my foot in my mouth. Try that. Being a fool on purpose is much harder than doing it by accident.

    Incidently, I remember that the whole reason I wanted to become friends with you was because I liked your haircut. I think we all have that shallowness.

  4. I still have a book you gave me that you dropped in the bathtub and is all krinkly. And I think you know what book I mean.

  5. Ah, me. Yes I DO know the book of which you speak, Marcy. And Cathy, I wanted to be YOUR friend because of your clothes. It's nice to know I'm not the only shallow one.

  6. You can add me to your list of shallow friends. I always admired your sense of style and even coveted some of your clothes. At one point I considered inviting you to go shopping with me so that some of your good taste would rub off on me. If you are lucky she will be shallow too. I hope you had some awesome shoes on.

  7. Shallowness, especially at church is really where it's at. It takes the focus off the question of the depth of your spirituality. Shallow friends with good wardrobes and furniture and the like go a long wayv

  8. Thanks for all of the great tips as I'm entering a new ward!

  9. Tonight, I went on a first date, during which I told the guy he was too short, insulted his undergraduate major, and questioned his manliness in response to his food choice.

    I think you're doing just fine with the whole conversation thing.