Friday, October 21, 2005

I'm supposed to be a lover, not a fighter

So in the physics homework lab, which is where physics students gather to cry about their assignments and exams, one student got fed-up. At 7pm a mysterious student sitting on the opposite end of the 20 meter long hot dog shaped room whistled loudly. Once attention was given he asked for everyone to stop talking loudly.
My thought was, "This is a group physics lab where students come to discuss. It is a social room. What is this guy's friggin' problem?" Now I like quiet, just like the mystery man, but I don't have any reason to require it in a room like this one. I myself have shh'ed people in the library before. Anyway, everyone was probably thinking the same thing, but in the spirit of cooperation quieted our collective volume a bit.
About 10 minutes later this same mysterious character started yelling with a thick eastern European accent. "You people are being disrespectful. You are talking waaay too loud, 'blah, blah, blah.' Please shut your mouths now. I'm so sick of hearing you...."
"Why don't you go to the library?" I offered.
"You can just shut your mouth, buddy!" he yelled.
me: "Well this is not a room that is supposed to be quiet, so you should find..."
man: "I told you to shut your mouth!!"

me: "I have some ear plugs if you want them. I have extras."

man: "You can take those ear... pl... whatever.. and you can stick them... you know where!!"

At this point I just couldn't believe what I was hearing. Apparently this guy was insane.

"You know, you're not really convincing me that you want quiet; I'm more convinced that you just want..."
man: "You shut your mouth!! You know, we can go outside! Right now!! We can settle this!!"

At this point I considered the option he offered. The first thought was, "Sweet, I'd love to get it a fight right now. Maybe I can hurl this metal chair 25 ft. at his head right now." This thought was followed by the thought, "Why are we fighting again? Doesn't fighting get me kicked out of BYU? I guess I need to only defend myself if he attacks me. I wonder if he's even that strong. He is from another country. He might have killed a person before, or even punch a woman." The thought of fighting about talking loudly in the physics lab then became funny to me, and I started laughing out loud.
me: "There is no reason why we should be fighting, seriously."
man: "Listen to me. Shut your mouth. Shut your mouth now."

I thought for a moment and said, "Ok, I'm going to talk whenever I want, and it's not my job to beat you if you don't like it. But I will call BYU police because I'd like to fight with you, and I might lose my patience."
man: "You shut your mouth."
me: "Yeah, keep it up."

At this point, I went back to doing my homework with my classmates. Also, when my friend came in a few minutes later, I told the friend about how ridiculous I thought this guy was. The guy could hear it all and didn't do anything. Take that, punk.

I see this guy every few days now, but we haven't had any more exchanges. If he has something useful to say, I'll listen. If he says something stupid, I will again discount it.

Happy Halloween, everyone! Look at my pumpkin picture.

This also reminds me of the Kevin Bagoyo incident.

Monday, October 17, 2005

The author of the Newsweek article, "The Mormon Odyssey," did an interview and here's the transcript.
Elise Soukup: Hi, everyone! I'm Elise Soukup and I'll be tackling your Mormon questions for the next hour. One disclaimer: I'm an active member of the church, but I certainly don't speak for the church. With that said, let's get started....
MSNBC Source

Thanks to for that.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

I'm curious about mormons... Are you?

Informed by only assumptions about the background of the author and the resources applied to publish the Newsweek article, "The Mormon Odyssey," I am satisfied with the results. My assumptions are that the author did not attend LDS Sunday School for the past 25 consecutive years (as I have) and that the resources given to compose the article were less than the resources given to educate me. I consider myself an expert in the history of the LDS church compared to the average human.

I thank the author for writing the article. I'm always excited when someone asks me questions about the history of the LDS church. I think many things were done well. I think that some things could have been clearer. Let's explore some things that could improve the article and future articles.
1. Smith's times are much like our own, and his story has a particular resonance in the first years of the 21st century. Like us, he lived in an era of evangelical energy...

The "evangelical energy" of today couldn't be closely compared to that energy of the early 1800s. It would be like comparing a candle (today) to a lit-up baseball stadium (Joseph Smith's time). (Wikipedia: Revival History 1830).

2. During the next five years, the Missouri Saints were driven by mobs from Jackson County to Clay County to Far West, Mo. As prejudice increased, Missouri Gov. Lilburn Boggs issued an "extermination order" in 1838, and Smith and his followers fled to Nauvoo, Ill.
I think many people will be confused about what "issued an extermination order" means. Something as horrible as that order deserves a few words of explanation.

3. Central tenets of Mormonism seem confusing—even literally incredible—to those outside the faith. An angel named Moroni? "Plural" marriage?
Like, Coop, I found this part misleading. Plural marriage is a central tenet? I don't even see it in the 13 Articles of Faith. The church teaches that monogamous marriages are the rule, not the exception. (Church response to Jon Krakauer’s Under the Banner of Heaven).

4. The church is organized into "wards" in which members deliver meals to new mothers, help relocating families find housing, and pack and unpack during moves.
Wards are so much more than places to receive food and service. Attend a church service and you'll find out.

In a few places, the author could've given Joseph Smith the benefit of the doubt more than he did. I'm proud of the author for swimming through the oceans of lies about the Prophet Joseph Smith to give some accurate information to the average American.

My friend Coop also read and made comments in his blog about this article.
Cooped Up

I especially like his idea that the author is repeated seeming to say that Mormons now think that polygamy in the 1800s was a problem or a mistake. We do not believe that polygamy was a problem.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

gender viewpoint

"Men are idiots. They don't buy flowers often enough for their women," said a 20 year-old female classmate of mine(Lady1), sitting at a table with Man1 and me.
"That may be true," said I looking at the strange expression on Man1's face. Man1 had been on a couple of dates with this young lady recently.
She continued, "From now on, I'm going to remind one man per day to buy his woman flowers. When I become a professional, I'll continue to remind those dense engineers to remember their wives."
"I'm sure you'll mend many-a-marriage," I replied.
Her rant continues: "Men don't ever remember these things like they're supposed to. They need a reminder to help them remember what they're already supposed to be doing."
I sit-up, logically connecting: "You know what? You're right--flower-buying responsibilities of married men have been ignored for too long. Marriages are hurting, and you've inspired me. I'm going to take up the cause, too. From now on, if I see a ring on a lady's finger I'm going to remind her to 'stop nagging' her husband."
At this point there was a divided reaction in my crowd of 2. Man1 put his head down in his folded arms on top of the table hiding his face contorted with the pain of constrained laughing. Lady1 gasped and then shouted, "No wonder you haven't gotten married yet! Women only nag because their husbands do stupid stuff!"
Me: "Oh, you're right. Women are perfect and men are not."
Lady1: "Exactly"
At this point I realized the state of mind of the girl and stopped talking to her about anything but our assignment. Here's what I was thinking I should say: "Your husband is in for a treat. It's a good thing that one of us can control our tongue." She'll probably learn before she gets hitched.

Maybe I should buy Lady1 some flowers later today with a note enclosed. The note will read: "Don't nag your future husband."

old blog

Link to my old blog: