Monday, October 31, 2011

Thin Skinned

I was somewhat recently told by someone (this man is old enough to be my father) who knows nothing more about me than my name, that I regularly attend church, and that a colleague of his hurt my feelings once at church to the point of tears, that I am too thin-skinned.  Prior to this accusation, I had spoken to this man one-on-one once for about three minutes when aforementioned situation occurred. Yes, the words, "You need to quit reacting this way.  You are too thin-skinned," were actually used.  Yes, I stood there and took it with a smile on my face the entire time.

Um?  Isn't this comment an exclusive right of those who know you extremely well?  Wouldn't this greatly upset someone who is thin-skinned?

They went on to tell me that I need to quit being so thin-skinned so that I can get married before I am 31.  Too bad I'm already 31.  I guess the hopes are dashed of getting this crazy girl married off before she is too crazy to marry.

I have to laugh (after I finish being completely irritated).  This individual only has my best interests at heart, right?

Friday, October 28, 2011

Halloween Costumes

Time for another confession.

I am not good at Halloween costumes.  Like, at all.

Regardless, over the past few years I've had some interesting ones.  What does this year hold in store?  I'll leave you guessing for now...
Punk Rock Chick?  Not sure...
Energizer Bunny
Happy Hands Club from Napoleon Dynamite
Super Clayton and Happy Hands
Hippie Chick and Carmen Miranda
Conor the Devil Cat - for the record, my sister did this to her
Ralphie the Pink Nightmare from A Christmas Story
Minnie Mouse and Nacho Libre in his recreational clothes

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Salsa Dancing

Have you ever watched people spinning and dancing all over the floor, shaking what their momma's gave 'em, and thought, "Man, that would be fun!"

I do.  All the time.  In fact, I also think, "Psh...I could do that."  And what better to help me with my stage-withdrawal than to take dance lessons?

So, when Dennis, he of many, many belly laugh inductions, suggested I take six weeks of Salsa lessons with him at Ballroom Utah, how could I refuse?  Really, why would I refuse?

I've had a blast the past six weeks.  Sometimes we haven't paid as much attention as we should, as we are often the annoying giggly duo in the background.  You know, the ones the teachers always ask, "Did you get it?" 

What will I miss about Salsa class?
  1. Learning a new dance.  I love to dance!  I love learning new things.  Maybe someday I'll have a beau I can dance with - you never know.
  2. Dancing with good leaders.  Dennis is very good at stopping me after the spins -he's the best spinner stopper man.  Jeff with the beard is probably the best leader in my group with the best tempo.  And I am becoming so much better at learning to follow a lead.  I've always struggled with following a man's lead, as I've been paired with some not-so-stellar dancers since the time I was 16 and have had to learn to lead them.  This has been a good experience for me.
  3. Laughing at all the people trying to hit on each other or check each other out.  Really?!
  4. Chatting with Dennis after class.  Man, I've needed those laughs.  And the upliftment.  Few people in life just "get you," and he does.
There are a few things, however, I am looking forward to leaving behind.
  1. Mister "I am man."  This particular Indian fellow was doing a particular move wrong.  I, after being confused by his lead, suggested, "I thought the outside turn was a turn to the outside?"  He replied, "I am the man.  I will decide which direction you turn and I want you to turn this way.  I am the man.   You follow me."  Hmm...ok.  Never-you-mind that your partner will get confused because the particular lead you are doing is the lead for another type of turn.  I tried to open my mouth to just ask him a question, but he kept repeating to me his nonsense about how the man is in charge, very sternly.  So, I pulled the old smile and nod.  Wouldn't it figure that the next time I had to dance with him, he was doing it the way I was trying to help him?  Geez.
  2. Mister, "Old Sleeveless Shirt."  This guy is so sweet, truly.  But he swings his arms back and forth while dancing, which makes his leads almost impossible to follow through with with confidence and he is always trying to tell me what to do because he thinks he's super good.  I'm fine with being bossed if the man is better, but...  And did I mention those arms aren't wearing anything?  Yep, he wears those old t-shirts with the sleeves cut off.  He is quite fit, but also well into the territory where he is old enough to be my father.  Put some clothes on.  And quit flirting with your daughter's friends.  Creepy.
  3. Miss, "Whole Body Laugh."  WBL is a big girl in all regards.  She is clearly coming to salsa classes to find herself a man, not to find herself some dance skills, finding it more entertaining and flirt-conducive to not be able to do the dance moves.  She does this whole body laugh with every new dance partner she has and may or may not have even sent her friend over to my friend to get his number...that was entertainment.  He's in an exclusive relationship, which the two gals were baffled by because who would he be dating if not his dance partner whom they knew he wasn't dating?  Hilarious.  Now they act all over-the-top awkward.  
  4. 9pm start time.  Maybe I'm getting old, but I'd enjoy it more, have more energy, and be able to make other plans for the evening if class started at 7.  
 If any of my man friends ever want to take a ballroom class, I'm in! 

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

It's Bound to Happen...

We all have romantical interludes in our lives that have passed for one reason or another.

We all know, when those relationships end, we will both end up dating and marrying not each other.

Why then do I become giddy with joy and simultaneously want to vomit when I see a former flame flirting with a beautiful, sparkling date of his whose eyes clearly adore him?  How can that make me so satisfied and synchronously so sick?   As super refreshing as it is knowing we are both happy in our pursuits not with each other, I just don't want to witness the ritual.  I'm guessing the main reason, although selfish, for the blow to the gut is seeing solid evidence you are no longer the most important person in that individual's life.

When you have chosen, and genuinely desire, to remain friends, seeing each other date is inevitable and that first splash of cold water in the face is the worst. 

I am grateful for my opportunities in relationships.  I am grateful for the control they have over our internal organs from butterflies to bleeding.  Not to sound cliche, but it really is tasting the bitter that makes us recognize the sweet.  I am grateful for second and third and fourth chances for happiness and that the men I've dated are quality enough to want that happiness for me as much as I want it for them.  

That doesn't make the whole process any easier. 

Monday, October 24, 2011

Pumpkin Decorating Star Wars Style

No pumpkin will ever beat this.  Ever.

Well...maybe an Ewok.  But seriously, how cool is this?!

I challenge you to find a better pumpkin and post it to your blog.  Triple Dog Dare ya.

Update 10/25: This just in.  Wow.  Love it.  Thanks, Quinn!

Newsies Sing-Along

"Open the gates and seize the day."

Remember that time when five grown adults heard these magical words and let the spell fall upon them of spontaneously breaking into a full, robust musical number?

I do.

You know who you are.  Am I guilty?  Puhlease, as if I ever had the willpower to refrain from a Newsies sing-along.  You know you're jealous.

Monday, October 17, 2011

I Used to be Skinny...

I have recently observed a strange predicament - one I've been surrounded by my entire life and only just now have my eyes been opened to the pain behind so many conversations.

A group of females gathers around to chat - young, old, in between, doesn't matter.  Somehow, weight and dieting come up.  (For the record, I now always try to veer these conversations away from weight/diet and towards fitness/health)  Topics regarding all things that can smash one's self-esteem always seem to come up don't they?

More often than not, one of the more overweight of the group will bring up how they used to be a dancer, a ballerina, a swimmer, a cheerleader.  As if telling us they used to be skinny will change their current state.  As if the self-loathing they feel for "letting themselves slip" will go away because once upon a time they were "better."

I asked my co-worker about this phenomenon.  She said, "You know, it's true.  If you were ever less (weight), you always seem to refer back to that time." 

Does this scenario sound familiar?

The sad thing is that their comments and self-depreciating behavior lends itself towards those listening examining their frame and evaluating how far from "skinny" they have or have not fallen.   Do they not even realize they are inviting people to criticize them?  

Referring back to where you "used to be" at some pubescent high school age is beyond an unrealistic expectation.  You weren't "better" then, you weren't fully grown!  Geez Louise, we need need to cut ourselves some slack.  Does growing up and gaining gorgeous womanly curves and maybe having children make us less of a person?  What kind of a sick world is that?!

One friend recently said, "I hate telling people I used to be a cheerleader because that was fifty pounds ago.  It's embarrassing.  I know what they are thinking when I say that."

I brought up my thoughts on this with two former roommates at dinner last week (love you Cass and Andi!).  One of them is a counselor of sorts and shared with us that there is a complex often referred to as "living in the past" in which the subject fondly remembers what she feels is the height of her life and uses that as a frame of reference for everything else, prohibiting her from progressing and moving forward.  Is all of this talk about "better" days keeping these women from changing and progressing towards even better ones now?  I wonder.

Don't sit back and marvel at how you "used to be" while simultaneously insulting the amazing person you are today.  Who cares you were a prima ballerina in high school?  I care right now that you are a teacher or a coach or the best darned cook I know or an amazing socialite or a service-giver or that person who makes everyone around them feel loved.  I bet you were almost none of those things in high school.

My life changed completely when I moved to Salt Lake into my own condo.  I quit comparing myself to other women every single day.  I discovered what made me truly radiate with joy regardless of outside influences.  And you know what?  People notice that.  They notice that more than they do your jean size. 

Fitness and health is very important to me, you all know that.  You all know where I've come from.  You all know I've still got some fluffier curves to me.  But I'm healthy.  And I'm happy.  I 1,000% believe that happiness is integral to healthiness and one will lend itself to the other. 

I used to be in show choir.  I used to be on a nationally ranked baton team.  I used to be a regional champion YMCA gymnast.

Now, I am a best friend.  I am someone who has the discipline to accomplish anything I commit myself to.  I am a college graduate.  I am a former resident of Manhattan.  I am a hostess with the mostess.  I make cookies that will knock your taste buds from here to kingdom come.  I am a daily fitness routine partaker.  I am the adopted mommy of a precious rescue kitty.  I am a traveler.  I am a tour guide.  I am a dedicated, innovative employee managing a product I am proud of.  I am an ultimate frisbee player.  I am an actress.  I am a star.  I am a supporter.  I am a singer.  I am a salsa-class participant.  I am a tap-dancer.  I am a daughter and a sister.  I am a symbol of hope to some.  I try to be a symbol of love to all.  I am devoted to my Heavenly Father.  I can even still twirl my baton and do back-handsprings.  And I am more beautiful than I have ever been. 

Tell me, friends.  Does it matter that you "used to be skinny?"  Maybe those were your glory days, but instead of thinking, "When I was 18, I was the most fit of my life," we can take a huge leap and aim towards, "I am the most fit of my life."

Be healthy (yes, this includes a regular fitness routing and eating regime), be truly happy, be faithful to those things and the rest will fall into place. I, for one, would much rather be complimented with, "You are so fit and happy!" than, "You are so skinny."   

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Brandon Flowers: I'm a Mormon

I'd also like to think that most of you are familiar with my faith and the beliefs of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Recently, they have been filming short videos about people from your every-day-Joe to high-profile public figures, and they all have one thing in common: they are Mormons.  I like to call this the "I'm a Mormon Campaign." 

Most of you are familiar with the music group The Killers and their lead singer Brandon Flowers.  Did you know he is LDS?  He even has a son, Ammon, named after a Book of Mormon prophet.  I have long heard rumor of his heritage and wondered how a "rock star" could stay strong and faithful through fame and fortune.  People who overcome trials absolutely touch my heart.  Let him tell you his story in his own words in the video below.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Lord of the Rings Pez Dispensers

Last week I journeyed to the local Holiday station for a little beverage refreshment.  Nothing like a mid-day Diet DP from the fountain, freshly adorning the "good ice."  Yeah, you know the ice I'm talking about!

Anyway.  As I was walking to the register, something caught my eye.  And boy oh boy was it a beaut.  I had to share it. 

Would you spend your $20 on collectible Lord of the Rings pez dispensers?  Too hilarious.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Cold Feet

Sometimes I get so cold that I have to soak my feet in hot water before bed.
Sometimes I am also hungry and a wee bit thirsty.
I looked in the mirrors surrounding me as I was doing this after Salsa lessons last Wednesday and found the view rather hilarious, so I thought I'd share it with you.
Carry on.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Naming Your Car and other such Nonsense

My car's name is "Poopers."  What's yours?

Back in February of 2000, I took a trip to Las Vegas with my roommates Katie and Wendy.  We were cruising down the strip, probably jamming out to Bon Jovi, and happened upon a luxury car with the license plate, "Poopers."  We all thought this was entirely too hilarious and my car has since been known by aforementioned name.  I wonder if Wendy and Katie even remember?  I still haven't figured out if "Poopers" is a girl or a boy...

How did your car get it's name?  Male or female?  Do you think naming cars is nonsense?  I do, but gave into peer pressure...

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

I Love Little Caesar's

I feel I have confessed a grievous sin this day.  And I don't care what anyone thinks of me right now.  I love Little Caesar's!  I love the $5 pizza.  I love that bread that makes us crazy.  I love that it is hot'n'ready.  I love when some of the cheese flows over onto the crust and I have cheese-crust to put that finishing touch of perfection on my meal.

I LOVE LITTLE CAESAR'S!  And I don't care who knows it!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Spanish Swype

Some clever person thinks they are sooooo funny.

Apparently I leave my phone unattended all too often and provide ample opportunities for someone to nab it and switch my swype predict settings to Spanish.

Ha. Ha. Ha.  Good one;-)  Whoever you are.

Dreams: Gremlins and Tornadoes

A tornado touched down in a field slightly outside of the "old Kroger's" in my hometown of Piqua, Ohio.

What kind of damage did the tornado bring?  Gremlins.  The tornado delivered gremlins.  Yes, those little green creepy critters.  And I spent the entire rest of the dream trying to protect myself and my family from the tornado gremlins.

I've been petrified of these little guys as long as I can remember, yet I love watching those movies.  I used to think that gremlins would reach through the slots in open-staircases and grab my ankles with their bony, clawed fingers.

But in my dream, they just destroyed the grocery store, particularly enjoying destroying milk jugs and other items in the refrigerator/freezer section.  My ankles are safe.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Sharktopus Converts

Last night, I had a mission and invited over a dozen friends with one goal in mind - to convert people over to the love of cheesy shark movies.  If Shark Night 3-D on my birthday didn't do it, I know Sharktopus sealed the deal.

For this special occasion, I am re-posting my original Sharktopus experience.


March 16, 2011
My lil sis and I have this thing for shark movies - cheesy shark movies, in particular.

She called me the week before I went home in an excited frenzy with a request for a date with me and Sharktopus.  How could I refuse?  Why would I refuse?

Saturday evening rolled around and my sis, her almost-fiancee, and my 'rents all settled in for a movie together.  She let Dad pick and, much to our surprise, he selected "Sharktopus."

Sharktopus, or S11, is under the control of an electronic collar.  Oh no!  The electronic collar got knocked off by a speed boat.  He's on the rampage!  He walks on land!  He can climb!  This is probably the best cheesy shark movie ever.

My mom, in her very observant state, blurted out in the middle of the movie, "Boy, he sure does eat a lot!"   As a good cheesy shark movie must have a high body-count, "Sharktopus" delivered.  Mom couldn't figure out why he was so hungry and suggested we rewind the movie to keep better track of the "meals."  Hilarious.

Even more hilarious?  During one of our moments of exclamation/mocking/amusement, we were all apparently pretty loud.  Dad explodes, "SHHH!  GIRLS!  Quit talking!  We can't hear what's going on!"  Before we could compose ourselves, he picked up the remote and pressed "Rewind," at which point we did all we could to keep from absolutely erupting with laughter.

Really, Dad?  "Sharktopus?"  We had no idea he was that into the movie.  We teased him about it the next day and we started laughing with him and he said, "Well, if I was going to spend time to watch that movie, I at least wanted to know what was going on!" 

We also teased Brit's beau, Matt, because he was the only one who hadn't promptly cracked up at Dad's, umm..."interest" in "Sharktopus."  He said, "I knew you guys were laughing, but I'm not getting myself in trouble!  I sat there saying in my head, 'I'm not going to laugh, I'm not going to laugh.'"  He's totally in with the future in-laws.  And me.

If you need a good laugh, "Sharktopus" with the Villers' clan will never disappoint.  Dig it.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Parade - Spotlight Theater Company at Rose Wagner Performing Arts Center

Spotlight Theater Company is currently presenting the Utah premiere of Parade: The Broadway Musical in the Leona Wagner Black Box Theater at Rose Wagner Performing Arts Center in downtown Salt Lake City.

Many of you are probably not too familiar with the plot of this 1998 Jason Robert Brown piece.  The show begins with a young soldier and his girlfriend enjoying a picnic before he heads off to fight the civil war.  We re-enter the show 50 years later on the day of the Confederate Memorial Day Parade in 1913.  Little 13-year old Mary Phagan talks with her friends about attending a movie show later that evening after she picks up her pay from the pencil factory.  Unfortunately, that was the last her friends saw of her until her body was discovered in the basement of the factory.  Leo Frank, the Jewish, Brooklyn-native superintendent of the factory, was the last to see Mary alive.  Georgia's solicitor general, Hugh Dorsey, rallied dozens of testimonies to "prove" Frank the murderer and Frank was sentenced to death.  Upon being approached by Frank's wife Lucille, Governor of Georgia Frank Slaton, reopened the case because the evidence and testimonies did not stack up.  Leo's death sentence was altered to life in prison as the case was reviewed, he was moved to another prison, and in all likelihood he would have been pardoned.  On August 17, 1915, a mob of 25 men raided his prison cell and hung him from a tree in Mary Phagan's home town.  Some believe that this group of Hugh Dorsey supporters, known as the Knights of Mary Phagan, eventually gave rise to the re-birth of the KKK.

Jason Robert Brown is some tough composition - entrances in the middle of musical vamps, intricate harmonies, tempo craziness, you theater people out there know what I'm talking about.  Of course there were  harmonic blunders and hesitancies on some choral entrances and tempos.  Impressively, the soloists all found their entrances without a hitch...either that or the orchestra was as fantastic as I know they were and were so flawlessly following the actors that I didn't notice anything too off.  Well played, orchestra!

I must begin with a few items I would like to rave about.

Summer Sloan as Mary Phagan lit up the stage every time she appeared.  I adored this breath-of-fresh-air actress and was sorely disappointed her character was killed after only one number for her.  She does reappear several times throughout the show in some very cleverly blocked scenes and continues to win the audience over with her vibrance and life.

Scott Cluff shared with the audience the pain and emotional turmoil of Leo Frank.  At the beginning of the show, you find yourself watching the every-man we all know - married, getting ready to start a family, working for the man, and seemingly struggling with something internally.  After Mary's death, we see him close off emotionally to his adoring wife, act suspicious, and, well, you really just don't care for him much.  We are not shown the events of the day of the murder, yet are lead to believe he did not commit the crime.  But something in the way Cluff portrays Leo leaves this nagging thought in the back of your mind, "Did he do it?"  He does an amazing job in the first act with setting up his character to be suspect and unendearing to give the audience the inquisitiveness we need to become invested in the show.  In the second act, Leo warms up to his wife, becomes human, makes us root for him to be found innocent.  What a great character arc, Scott Cluff, thank you!  And shall I mention his voice?  He sings with the crystal clarity of an angel.  After his first number, I leaned over to my friend and whispered, "He's GOOoooood."  I believe his character's final lines embody Leo Frank and left my heart touched as he shared his belief that God had a hand and a reason in everything and that he has not gone through the past two years to stand and confess a lie at his death - he is innocent.

I cannot write this without mentioning the ability of Adrien Swenson to rip your heart out as Lucille Frank.  She is devoted, loving, and dedicated even when Leo talks to her as no wife should be.  We first see her as a Southern Belle, with an ideal life and a husband to support her.  Throughout the evening, we see Adrien turn Lucille into a strong woman who can run not only her life, but also come to the aid of her husband - ultimately earning him the change of his sentencing.  Through Lucille, you are able to better see the changes in Leo.  If these two had not had the precise chemistry and nuance they had, the show would not have worked.  Adrien's voice is also quite reminiscent of Marin Mazzie's in Ragtime - gorgeous, emotional, raw when necessary, refined when necessary, just absolutely necessary to the show.  Bravo!

Hats off also, to the abundance of performers filling the evening in roles big and small.  Jen Chapman as the girl who can do anything she wants, Iola Stover, is gorgeous on stage as she portrays the youth, brattiness, and vulnerability of a child caught up in a murder trial.  She leads her fellow Factory Girls (Sasha Sloan as Essie, Laurie Carlson as Monteen) in what I see as a 1913 version of "Mean Girls."  Brent Sloan as Hugh Dorsey fits the bill with his classic look of the middle-aged, attractive southern lawyer...who turns out to be a snake.  Jacob Shamy's Tom Watson is the most stubbornly convicted persecutor of Leo, swaying the mobs with his constant reinforcement of needing to take a stand - "Where will you stand when the flood comes?"  The only comic relief I found, and much enjoyed, in this show was the five or six lines shared by Sally Slaton, played by Heidi Smith opposite Nolan Mitchell's beautiful change-of-heart performance as Governor Slaton.  The list goes on, the individual characters all performed with passion - Jann LeVitre as Mrs. Phagan, James Naylor as Frankie Epps, Rose Bench as Minnie Mcknight, Rocky Revels and Judge Roan, Jeff Robinson as Luther Rosser, Conor Thompson as Peavy, and the rest of the ensemble.

I did find a few things rather distracting and unfortunate.  The orchestra is placed downstage, (the forward portion of the stage) stage left (the left side of the stage from an actor's point of view standing on the stage), which is great placement so as to not be distracting aesthetically.  Aurally, however, the performers were drowned out, although this did seem to balance out in the second act.  There was also a set-piece used throughout the show, a platform with three sets of stairs, that liked to sing (squeak loudly) along with the performers, and during all of the blackouts, in an almost comical way.  At one point, a larger cast member walked across the platform and it split in two.  Boy did that about give me a heart attack.  One other performer tripped and fell up when the stairs reared on him like a horse.  In our audience, we also had these annoying patrons in the back corner who were giggling at the most unfortunate times and making noises the entire first act.  Needless to say, they were reported to the usher's at intermission and it stopped.  Back to the on-stage antics, there were a couple of performers who were singing out of their range (example - baritone singing tenor) rather well, but then they attempted to hold out some big notes for big times.  They shouldn't have.  Lastly, and rather nit-picky of me, when Mary Phagan's body is placed on the stage for Leo Frank to identify, the body is placed so far downstage that I would guess at least half the audience could not see her.  I know I couldn't and I was in the middle of the fifth row.  The show is heavy, the content is extremely difficult.  The execution was far from perfect, however the audience leaves feeling all of what Parade intends to convey...I consider this a success.  My heart has been touched.

If you can't tell from the plot summary, the evening Parade provides is not one of laughs and light-heartedness.  Be prepared for a heavy evening that may leave you enraged.  I cannot believe we people used to be so biggoted, so stupid, so asinine, so willing to be led by the Pied Piper.  As an audience member, you will be left wondering when to clap because, most often, a performer will have delivered a beautiful ballad or rousing tune but the content leaves you feeling anything and everything except the desire to clap.

Yet clap they did.  The cast of Parade earned themselves a standing ovation from over half of the audience.

I left the theater more grateful for my life, for my faith, for my loved ones.  If you would like to see Parade, you can still catch them Friday October 7 through Saturday October 15 at 7:30pm (Saturday October 15 Matinee @ 2) in the Leona Wagner Black Box Theater.  Buy tickets here.

Offending Nerds

I can't get enough of this viral photo.  It's called, "How to offend multiple groups of nerds at the same time."

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Malware Status: CLEAN!

To all of you who tried to visit my site yesterday and today:
My site is and always has been clean.

I reported to Google that a friend had received a warning upon visiting my site, so they flagged my blog as "blacklisted."  I requested a review and they mark pages as "suspicious" if you have a link to any site that has ever been attacked with malware.  Naturally, I have a lot of links to a lot of sites: Wikipedia, popular blogs with thousands of followers, Google itself, etc.

This morning I received this notice in my Webmaster Tools: "Status of the latest badware review for this site: A review for this site has finished. The site was found clean. The badware warnings from web search are being removed. Please note that it can take some time for this change to propagate."

Followers, come back!  I lost two of you due to this fiasco:-(

Hang tight, my friends! We'll be back to normal within a day or two:-)

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Clue: Singles Ward Style

Clue Live Action + Miss Scarlet + Dozens of singles ages 18-31 = Trouble.  With a capital T and that rhymes with P and that stands for Pathetic.

Crime: Awkwardness Thrust Upon the Young Single Adults

The Scenario:
I was selected to play the character of Miss Scarlet, the sexy one, for our activity of live action clue.  I have to live up to my reputation of somewhat being an actress, so I tried to stay in character.  I spoke in a sultry voice, positioned my weight just so, and winked abundantly.  Men I have never before seen would throw flirtatious comments my way and even say some things slightly uncomfortable.  I couldn't quite figure out why they flirt so much with Miss Scarlet, but not so much with Larissa when we are, indeed, one in the same.  Some folks got I was back to being me after the game ended, others didn't.

*Disclaimer* - this is all in good fun.  If any of the parties involved read this post, you have to recognize the hilariousness of these situations and the total blog-worthiness of it all.  And I totally am not following the rules of Clue - the "clues" below are just hilarious, awkward stories from the evening.

Clue 1
"How much do you weigh?"
"What?!  You do not ask a lady her weight.  Ever."
"If you don't tell me, I'll guess."
"I honestly don't know, I haven't stepped on the scale for a month."  (this is because I am majorly disappointed in my eating habits the past month and don't want to sink into major depression based off of what that blasted needle tells me)
"Oh please, you are a girl.  You know.  What is it?  I'll guess!"
"No, no, that's okay.  I'll tell you because if you guess you'll over guess and then I'll be depressed."
*Insert his weight guess here*
"Hey you didn't wait for me to answer!  Fine.  Last time I stepped on the scale was *insert weight two pounds less than what he guessed*." 
"Okay, so how old are you?"

Clue 2
Gentleman moves to put his arm on my shoulder and scores an accidental bum graze.
"Whoa, watch those hands."
"It was an accident!  If you were a guy, I'd say I didn't know it stuck out so far."
Awkward laugh and blush.
"Um, but you are a girl, it is supposed to stick out.  Guys don't stick out so far."
More awkward laughs.
"...and ghetto booties are totally in now thanks to J-Lo! So you're good!" 

Clue 3
Involved in a conversation, the young man abruptly turns and walks towards some food.
I hear the command, "Come here."
Naturally, I cannot believe I've been given an order like a trained dog and follow him to confirm if I had just heard what I thought I heard.
"Did you just say, 'Come here?'  Does that really work on people?  Like, do people actually respond to that?"
"Well you just did."

Clue 4
Via Facebook Chat
"Okay.  Ima go sleepy now.  Wanna come?  I think I am funny sometimes."  (not honestly offering for the young man to have a slumber party with me - I just think the invitation is hilarious and probably shouldn't and should probably stop...oops)
"Ha ha.  I need to finish some work and I have a sore throat for no reason today, so best that I not smother ya."
"Wow. Even my pretend invitations get rejected."

Clue 5
Facebook message this morning from a man at the activity who has never spoken to me.
"Would it be alright if I called you sometime to set up a date?" 

Mystery Solved: It was Larissa in the church building with the high-heeled shoes.

I had an absolute blast the entire evening.  I think I thrive off of awkwardness sometimes. I'm not saying I condone it or enjoy these weird things, but it does give me some inexplicable rush and some seriously spectacular stories. 

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

What is Wrong With Men in Singles Wards?

Yesterday after opening session of LDS General Conference, I found myself alone in a room with three eligible bachelors.  Earlier during breakfast (one young man was in the kitchen with his computer), this great blogarooski came up along with the post, "Singles Ward Hopper: What is Wrong With Women in Singles Wards."

Before I knew what hit me, I hear, "So you wrote about what is wrong with women, what about men?  What's wrong with men in singles wards?"

"Ooooh no, I'm not getting myself in that kinda trouble.  No way."

They prod some more.

"No way, NO way.  That singleswardhopper guy is anonymous for a reason.  No."

They prod some more.

I give in.

"Well, you are going to hate me for saying this, but it really is a case-by-case basis."

"We know that!  But generally speaking.  Generally."

I thought and I thought and my mind kept saying, "Nothing is wrong with them.  Not every person is a match for every other person.  That doesn't mean there is anything wrong with them, they just aren't my match."

I finally concluded, "In my experience I encounter a lot of guys who are slackers."

Naturally, this brought about some defensive behavior.  Gear down big shifters.  I honest-to-goodness don't see one trait that is overwhelmingly negative, that was just the best answer I could come up with when my honest answer didn't fly with them.  Truth be told, a lot of women are slackers too.  My definition of "slacker?"  Behavior that is detrimental to relationships - human, divine, etc.

If you are living with your parents with a good reason like saving for a house or school? Totally acceptable... as long as mom isn't still making your bed for you and serving as your alarm clock.

If you are still in school?  Great!  As long as you are working towards a goal.

If you are playing video games eight hours a day?  Not okay.  I can't bring myself to view heavy gaming as anything but slacking and a relationship-time thief, even if you do have a good job.  You see, I want my future companion to pay more attention to me than his video games.  Call me crazy.  And that reason is why I chose "a lot of them are slackers."  There is a certain demographic of men, let's call it the 18-25 year old single male, that has a propensity to give in to the temptations of all gadgets electronic and sucking.

If you are stuck in an endless cycle of "What am I doing with my life?" Dissatisfied with where/who you are?  Making no motions to change that?  Have a "the world is out to get me" attitude?  I consider these slacking as well.  I have had the pleasure of dating some spectacular men.  Truly.  I'd say at least half of them were in some phase where they didn't know what they wanted out of life in general, which left them in no position to make decisions about romantic relationships.  They all eventually conclude, "I don't know if I want you in my life," and the dating subsides.  Of course, I think the real reason is always he's just not that into me, but that's another post.  

Back to my original answer.  What is wrong with the men in singles wards?


Many YSA males have challenges to overcome, even if as simple as working up the nerve to ask out a young lady or as complicated as battling addiction.  Challenges make us stronger and we either break them or they break us.  That's what separates the men from the boys.  And you know what?  Overcoming challenges is hot.  So keep at it.

Addendum: Interestingly enough, one day after publishing this, I came across a CNN Article: Why Men are in Trouble.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Worth Suffering For

"The truth is that everyone's gonna hurt you.  You just have to find the ones worth suffering for."
- Bob Marley

What makes the suffering joyful for you?

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Where You'd Rather Be

I stumbled across this phrase last Friday and I haven't been able to get it out of my mind.

So often in life, I become disgruntled with where I am.  Maybe it is social life, maybe it is dating life, maybe it is performing or work or living situation or family or or or.

The thing is, in order to make a change, I have to decide where I would rather be before anything is going to happen.  I have to take action instead of just sitting back and waiting for life to happen.  I have to decide where I would be happiest and get there.  My destination isn't going to arrive at me, I need to arrive at my destination.