So naturally, when our other roommate Chelsie landed tickets and invited us to go with her to General Conference, we both saluted in sync and said "General Conference," like a five star general had just walked into our barracks. I don't think Chelsie got it.
I had already turned down an invitation to go to Sunday morning session with this guy, we'll call him Devin. What is it about General Conference that makes guys think its like the homecoming dance of awesome dates? For those of you non LDS, General Conference (salute) is basically a huge meeting where everyone gathers together to watch a satellite broadcast where the leaders of the church give talks about things like the Atonement, faith, doing good works, and other gospel topics. It happens twice a year and if you happen to live near Salt Lake City, Utah (church headquarters), its possible to go in person instead of watching it by satellite, but you have to get tickets to get in (they're free).
So basically, the Devins of the world think that just because an event requires tickets, its a great idea for a date. That's not really how it works. Hockey games, movies, and concerts all require tickets and make great dates. Sitting next to you in General Conference (at ease, Soldier) while you studiously take notes and try to impress me with how strong your testimony is isn't exactly my idea of a great date. Is that just me? Does anyone else think its weird that the twice a year chance to hear the words of prophets and apostles is being commandeered into yet another means to impress and probably make out with a girl you like?
So yeah, I turned him down but ended up going with my roomies. I did take notes, so I thought I'd do a play by play:
This is going to sound kind of sacriligious, but I kind of zone out when the women speak in conference. Is that terrible? I should be supporting them, right? But they always have this super-sugary-sweet tone in their voice like they're talking to their kindergarten class and it just annoys me.
That being said, I was surprised to find I really enjoyed Sister Beck's talk. She quoted Eliza R. Snow and said "Women should be women and not babies that need petting and correction all the time". Amen, sistah! I'm tired of tiptoeing around bruised egos. She talked about the role women should take in the church and how important we are and basically said a lot of things that needed to be said.
The next up was Keith McMuffin. Or McMullin. I had trouble reading names, because, like a dumb girl, I refuse to wear my glasses. His talk was about 'duty'. He said the word 'duty' no less than every possible time he could fit it in. Of course, this got me giggling and when I repeated the word to Kaitlin she joined me in my immaturity. "I love and cherish the word duty", he said, quoting President Monson. "Our path of duty is clearly marked." I know, I know..we're twelve years old. That shouldn't be funny.
We started picking up a very 'the end is nigh' theme in the past few talks and songs. Kaitlin pointed it out to me. I nodded grimly and replied "Sounds like the duty is gonna hit the fan," which we both got a good, silent laugh out of.
A few other General Conference (at attention, Private!) highlights and observations:
M. Russell Ballard : "silly women led away by diverse lusts".
Also: more frank and open talks about sex with your kids. Hopefully that will dispell the widespread Utah girl myth that you can get pregnant through your belly button.
Saturday afternoon session is always hard at first. Lunch + church accounting = naptime.
Also of note, 119,722 new babies of record in 2009. Way to get on the baby-makin', sisters!
Newly released Randy D. Funk, former member of the seventy, has the coolest name ever. (Click the link to see the song we've dedicated to him in appreciation of his heartfelt service).
Inspired by Elder Miyagi's (I still hadn't gotten over my vanity enough to put on my glasses and see his real name) anecdote about his granddaughter, we're going to stick a popcorn seed jar in our appartment to motivate me to keep the dress code and stop swearing. Once the jar is full we're going to make popcorn balls to celebrate (it'll probably take me until Christmas to fill it up, so that'll be good timing.
Even if I'm a little rough around the edges, Elder Uchtdorf reminds me that "I'm still a twenty DOLLAR bill".
Richard G. Scott warns that the proud and hotties will not be saved. Uh oh...
The Primary President is exactly what I was talking about earlier. All I could think about was that she wished to welcome me to Munchkin Land. The physical and audible resemblance was hard to ignore.