30 April 2007

The Fab Five

yes, that fab five

Master Fob has politely demanded I pay tribute to the demons of chain blogging. Here goes nothing...

1. Where is this beach without sea you speak of?

It’s gosh darn megafreakin’ Arizona, baby.*

2. Have you ever danced with the devil in the pale moonlight?

Yes. Michael Keaton cut in, if you believe. There were other mildly ironic details but I forget.

3. If you could choose only one book to take with you to a deserted island, why not take food instead? Or a boat?

Apples don’t have teeth.

4. What is your favorite sin and why are you telling the blogosphere instead of your ecclesiastical leader of choice?

I torture neighborhood children by giving them free PSPs and forcing them to play it’s… “games.” (This is the “massive damage” Ken was talking about.)

5. Brady Bunch vs. the Partridge Family. Which side are you on? Even if the other side has knives?

I have always wanted to see the Partridge’s dog rip out Greg Brady’s throat. I’ll join whichever side that makes that the outcome.

I’m supposed to pass five questions to someone else. Volunteers can contact me the usual ways.

*It may also be some kind of metaphor.


good tune

23 April 2007

It's a Secret to Everybody

autobiographical posts 'r' us

In a recent conversation with my mother I mentioned, "I am secretly controversial." The statement was meant to be another seed for the forest that I hope will grow up and tell her I'm gay so I don't have too.

I got a very different reaction than expected, "Oh, you do like to stir the pot!"

That was hardly news to me* but it was something I've said about myself only recently. Lately, I've had to explain my behavior to many new people at once. One after another many of you have called me out on my approach to handling blog posts and I've honestly enjoyed the opportunity.

I realize I have a strong personality. Both my humor (often sarcastic) and my debate style (often confrontational) are things I've always known about. I even consciously tone myself down around new friends so they can have a chance to "build a resistance" to me.

So maybe it was just jarring to hear my mother use that phrase. It made me think the forest I planted over the years had a game trail that lead right to my blog. It was only for a moment, and honestly it was a pretty silly thought, but for a second it was scary!

It didn't help that she followed that with the statement, "I've always known about you."


It turns out she merely remembered details of a personality test I forgot I had taken a few years back. After she hung up I got out the test results and found a few things I didn't remember reading.

-"Since your major quest in life is to constantly take in knowledge and turn that into something useful, you will try to turn everything into a learning experience. "

-"Your enthusiasm for verbal debates can make you appear argumentative."

-"Tendency to be critical of opinions and attitudes which don't match your own. "

So are moms perceptive or do they just do their homework?

*or Drex, or -L-, or Scot, or Hurricane Chris, etc.


good tune

16 April 2007

Knowledge, Wisdom, Full Times

"Integrity has no need of rules." -Albert Camus

We don't know everything about the Plan of Salvation nor do we fully understand God's designs for mankind beyond the general "might find joy."

Each dispensation has had it's rules, leaders, cultures, laws, and enemies. No two were ever the same. From Adam VS Egypt to Helamon VS the Soviet Empire each has had different challenges to face and each has handled them accordingly. To find a common thread connecting these many peoples you don't have to look far. Love thy neighbor, thou shalt not kill, chastity; the Laws of God are clear, eternal, and unavoidable.

Rules and errata are left to the people. I have no idea how important it was to only walk a few steps on the Sabbath but that was the rule for an entire civilization. That rule got changed (voided, really) but not until the start of the following dispensation. Obedience to the rule was, in fact, a condition of continuing in God's good graces.*

Or was it? Could a man of a previous dispensation have doubted the rules and sought out the higher laws? What would that man be in the eyes of his contemporaries? A heathen, a heretic, a Samaritan?

Even now, in the Dispensation of the Fullness of Times, we haven't learned everything. Until such knowledge is gained the modern Church works policy based off the best understanding available. This knowledge comes from sources both temporal and divine. It can be painful to witness and even worse to bear.

Just ask Jane Elizabeth Manning James.

She was an early pioneer of the church. Black and female she served the Smith family after her baptism in 1842. Following the death of Joseph she was taken in as a servant by Brigham Young. In the years preceding her death she petitioned church leaders to allow her to be sealed to the Smith family claiming she was asked to by Emma to do so prior to the events at Carthage.

Early in 1894 she received word that her petition would be granted. Arriving at the temple she was informed that she would not be allowed entry but would instead be sealed, by proxy, to "be attached as a Servitor for eternity to the prophet Joseph Smith and in this capacity be connected with his family and be obedient to him in all things in the Lord as a faithful Servitor."

This is the only known occurrence of a sealing between master and servant. That was what the rules called for but was that what God really wanted? Was that really ever in the rules?

It took nearly a century for the church to figure out the problems with that and it may take another hundred to figure us out.

That's fine. The church can move at it's own pace. I'm not going to agonize as to why it hasn't happened yet. I don't know why President Hinckley answers questions about homosexuality with, "I don't know." He'll ask eventually. If not then a future prophet will.

*Regardless of the motive and regardless of who wrote the rule.


good tune

09 April 2007

Bugged by Etymology

for treating others as they like to be treated, obeying stop signs, and curing diseases

Mohos are in the spotlight again but not in the usual way. Rather, it's the title itself that is the focus of the Blogger community.

The history of the term is briefly thus: Bloggers, needing a snappy term to describe Mormon homosexuals, had bandied about a few terms but settled on "MoHo." It was short, catchy, gender neutral, and a good way to describe a homosexual that puts his Mormon faith before all else.

This history was published in response to a debate over who is entitled self-identify as a MoHo. The debate was sparked, as so many are, by an unprovoked attack. Both the titles of Mormon, MoHo, and their respective etymologies have been defined, deconstructed, and defended ad nauseum.

But history, as they say, is in the past.

Like so many other words, MoHo was invented to describe one thing but evolved into something completely different.* Bloggers have adapted it as a title for both homosexuals who identify as Mormon primarily and Mormons who identify as homosexual primarily. As a adjective it describes homosexual Mormon bloggers or any Mormon who is homosexual.

Some titles are bestowed (like Knight) but most are self applied (like Dad). Sometimes a title can be both (Doctor). "MoHo" is one title that is both. It's future as title and adjective is out of the hands of any one blogger.

And that's a good thing; some bloggers suck at labeling others.

*dude, pimp, gordita, tubular, gay, vista, stacked, etc.


good tune


02 April 2007

The Pedestal of True Thought and Final Word

"Sex is a continuum. You go through different phases along life’s way … and if you don’t, you’ve been sort of cheated." -Gore Vidal

Before I entered the blog world I'd only spoken with one other gay man. Our conversations were interesting and enlightening. Though we did not know each other for long I cherished the freedom of holding no secrets from at least one person. More to the point, since I had only maintained a dialog with just the ONE gay man I might be tempted to elevate that conversation; place it on The Pedestal of True Thought and Final Word. It wont seem so important as I get to know more of the gay community. Our conversation will become a note in the chord of my personal philosophy.

One note in particular I found very interesting. To paraphrase him, "Many people claim to be bisexual because it is easier than claiming to be either purely straight or purely gay."

I can imagine where it would be a little easier to be bi than regular gay such as telling a friend of many years,

"So I'm bi."

"What you like guys!"

"No, I like girls but also guys."

"So you're like what, bisexual?"

"Yes, I'm bi."

"But you still want to have sex with women?"


The heterosexual will never understand what it's like to be gay anymore than a Canadian can understand what it means to be Chinese.* The two must find common ground and "liking boobies" not only works but diffuses the key difference between them.

But is this the only explanation of bisexuality? Hardly. Sexuality, like everything else human, rests on a sliding scale. Some are predisposed to like what they find on the female end of the spectrum and others find the male end irresistible. A multitude of social and developmental elements factor into our positions on that scale. Also, we can’t forget our cognitive efforts to move ourselves along that continuum to where we feel most comfortable.

Shake us like dice and see where we land.

As a Mormon and a gay man, I can't help but feel a little jealous of the true bisexual. This strange creature could conceivably marry, raise a family, and be fulfilled without being detected by the church or anyone else he didn't want to know. He could "choose a side," as it were.

Lucky bastard.

*I almost wrote, “…any more than a Canadian can understand what it means to be important.” :P


good tune