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Everything posted by char713

  1. What do you want me to say? What would you consider discussion? Oh, yeah I'm totally a harshly critical, self-centered, cold and haughty person? I totally put people down on here all the time, I love to show off my superior gospel knowledge, I go looking for a fight in every thread, and don't bother to carefully read people's posts before I respond? Nope, not gonna happen. That's the opposite of how I operate here and in all my other online discussions. But you want me to do better. So.. here goes. Some people are jerks, some of those jerks are LDS. In my experience, there are a lot of LDS jerks in wards in Utah. Why might this be? Is it that I'm only imagining this because I am overly sensitive? Not likely, I spent my high school and college years in a ward that was pretty good at ridiculing those who didn't meet their standards. Got my thick skin years ago. But it's worse in Utah, at least in my experience and the experience of most of my former high school peers, and all of my many cousins who attended college in Utah and began to put down roots here. And nevermind me.. how about the experiences of enough other people that the term was ever able to have about and to be so widely understood? I don't think the burden of proof is on me here. A few of you have a real problem with the term and have taken our use of it quite personally. If that's because you feel equally repulsed by all over-generalizations then okay, more power to you I guess. If its because you live in Utah and love it, then good for you, you're one of the lucky ones. I haven't met any of the users here in person but I'm quite certain from the past several months of participation and lurking on this forum that at least a couple of you are the exact definition of the term you so despise. Maybe not in real life, but then that hardly makes it better does it? If you're allowing all of your sanctimonious frustration to come out online against other strangers because its a safe, anonymous place to do so? So you try to refute the experience, the frustration and sometimes hurt, by saying that it is all imagined or blown way out of proportion. Or that it is borne of oversensitivity, bigotry, or best of all, hypocrisy. See why it's so hard to have a discussion? No ones feelings or experience can count for anything unless they are approved of by Their Eminences. Otherwise the thread will be drowned in criticism and rebukes.. oh and their hurt feelings. The only feelings that apparently need no justification or explanation around here.
  2. Leah, you are the one user I have ever come across on this forum whose every post I have read has been brusque at best. I may complain about others (non forum-users) but it is not because they are less educated in the church than I, or because I dislike some part of their lifestyle or whatever, it is because they have been directly and purposefully hurtful toward myself or those I care about. Apart from a very few occassions where I met someone with the same level of antagonism with which they addressed me, I have never made comments that were cold or harshly critical, etc. I have never put anyone here down or met someone's request for advice with condescension, or attempted to deny that their experiences could not have been possible simply because my own were different. If I don't have something positive or sympathetic to say, I keep quiet. With the exception of threads like this one that are set up in order to vent and commiserate. But even here, I have been nothing more than defensive and a little angry - but again, not toward anyone here... well, until my comments this evening.
  3. I'm not attempting to hurt the mean people here, or in real life either. I was attempting to vent about them and maybe have a discussion about why this particular anomaly exists... at least as far as our experience tells us. I see that you would have me (and others like me) keep our mouths shut whenever our feelings have been hurt, and never tell the offender what hurt they caused, because then their feelings might be hurt too. Because they are more worthy to hurt than we, or at least they much more eloquent in expressing it.
  4. Calling a mean person a mean person is hurtful? I think this means I am officially done with this forum. There are a select few that in their online anonymity here have said some of the most insensitive, brusque, disparaging, and frankly snide things I have ever heard members express to each other. Not always to me necessarily, but to an awful lot of visitors to this site, very few of whom might have ever deserved it. There is no safe place here for the expression of doubt, confusion, hurt feelings, or anything that is not perfectly tolerant of whatever criticism those select few forum members see fit to dole out.
  5. I just re-read this post, and then reviewed my posts. I'm not sure whose comments you are mistaking for mine, but I never went on the offensive. I have talked about my own experiences, and described specifically what I believe the term to mean. In this way I have not over-generalized, and certainly never said a thing that might have been so sweeping as to include the General Authorities.
  6. Uhhh.. for the same reason why acting in self-defense is permissable by law. The "Utah Mormon" individual made themselves apparent by first doing or saying something hurtful. A person who recognizes that and wants to avoid similar situations in the future will pass judgement, and then distance themselves from the hurtful person. If they have children or other loved ones they will do their best to shield them from the hurtful person too. Its a punishment that fits the crime. After all, this type of person clearly doesn't want friends - at least not friends that are different from themselves - so they are unlikely to care or notice that you never act particularly chummy toward them from then on. Unless you dare to assign them a name, of course. Because as others have so aptly pointed out, the guilty take the truth to be hard.
  7. The difference between the desirable and undesirable LDS person, whether in Utah or not, is that one group has faults that could very well be labeled, but they are not faults that go on the offensive against their fellow Saints. They are faults that the person struggles with privately and if they do hurt or disadvantage others it is almost always inadvertent, and out of something not done rather than done. Ommission rather than commission. A "Utah Mormon" as I see it is one who does not have the tact or sensitivity to sometimes keep their great wisdom and righteousness to themselves. These are they who harshly verbally attack and rebuke others about the way they think or feel, believing all the while that they are only instructing or sharing their testimony.
  8. So no one is ever to use labeling terms of any kind, ever? So I am a hypocrite if I tell a visiting friend to my ward, "don't worry about what so-and-so might say or do while we're at church, he's always been unkind to me." Because by using the term Utah Mormon, it is simply a way of collecting all of the terms like cold, insensitive, haughty, self-centered, harshly critical, etc. under one easy umbrella term that most people may not like, but they do recognize what it means. I have the ability to recognize when someone is this way because I am not. I grew up in congregations that were incredibly welcoming and full of both good and kind people who loved unconditionally. But I'm supposed to keep that ability to judge and self-preserve completely to myself.. or better yet, never even have the thought. They can go on being jerks, because gosh darnit, they sure are righteous jerks.
  9. I might not have realized it either, but his eyes (complete heterochromia) gave him away. I don't think the real Tesla had that mutation... off to google it now.
  10. Angier loved his wife. But she was not his true motivation - he says this quite emphatically "I don't care about my wife I care about his secret." The other two women in play were also loved, and they were but small pieces of the puzzle. When the relationships with them started and ended, yes those events had a great impact but they were not the motivation behind why the men did what they did. I wish I could say more, avoiding spoilers makes it very hard for me to illustrate my point. I agree that it is horrific, I do not love it for that reason though, but for the intricacies in character development.
  11. I feel the same about the term "gypped." But it has permeated our vernacular to the point that I cannot hold anything against those who use the term. It may paint the user of the word to be insensitive or uninformed, but it doesn't make them a liar or otherwise undeserving of a listening ear.
  12. Interesting, but not that surprising, how this has devolved from a bit of venting, rightfully, about a sterotype that in at least a few people's experience has been proven to be true.... to a few people who have chosen to react oversensitively themselves, condemning the OP and the original opinion for reeking of oversensitivity and prejudice. And then finally it has been insinuated that the OP might be a liar and might try to hide "evidence" of his dislike of the negative culture in which he now finds himself. Nothing here has changed my mind. People can be excellent Saints and scholars of the gospel, and yet still be deeply unpleasant people.
  13. I can't speak for the OP, but I am not concerned with what happens on the first week, or even the first couple of months of being in a new ward. That's an adjustment period for everybody. I'm talking about after having been in the ward for an extended period of time, and after having tried to integrate oneself, asked for opportunities to serve, taken callings if/when they were given, and attended every meeting. After all of this my husband and I are still being greeted with dismissive, holier-than-thou, and sometimes downright snide comments by a great majority of the ward.. often before we ever have the chance to open our mouths. (Just because we had the gaul to show up childless.) In the first ward we lived in in Utah it was almost the same, even though we could still pass for newlyweds back then. Those members kept "reminding" us that we could attend the student ward if we wanted to (no.. that was never an option.) A couple of my older male cousins aren't married yet (early thirties) and are having a very hard time with how they are being treated at church too. Sure, that's something that can happen anywhere, but I'm certain it happens much more often in Utah. Members here can feel more free to share strong opinions, because chances are there are at least a dozen other members within throwing distance to back them up. And there usually are.
  14. I have said this in other threads recently, I think. But I grew up moving around a lot and lived in mostly military wards and branches. So I know what it is like to have the ward become your surrogate family, and how effortless that becomes when you actually treat people as if they might need you as much as you need them. Our first long-term ward in the states was a real culture shock - very, very clique-ish, very closed off, very judgemental and quite outspokenly so. It didn't help that our family did homeschooling at the time. But that is nothing compared to our experience here in Utah. I have just lived in two wards here, for two years in one and three in the other. But I have the experiences of my many cousins and college friends to go off of as well. My cousins grew up stateside, in wards very similar to the one I previously mentioned.. fairly average I guess. They have all mentioned the difference they felt during their time in Utah, and all of them expressed a fervent wish to not stay here too long and put down roots. Even my high school peers who were incredibly gung-ho about attending BYU and living in Provo for the rest of their lives got the heck outta' there as soon as they could. The main theme I heard from their facebook and blog posts about life in Utah was complacency.. and worries about becoming complacent themselves. I'm not just making assumptions based on my own admittedly limited experience and observations.
  15. I don't think anyone here has maligned or questioned those members' faithfulness or testimonies. Most of them are anything but wishy washy in terms of doctrine. Our "beef" is that they have forgotten how to reach out and fellowship others, and often refuse to do so even when given direct instruction to (VT/HT in our current ward is less than 25% most months, both programs. Even worse in our last ward down in Orem.)
  16. Perhaps the term is too broad, but the meaning of it is not. Based on my experience, it is any member living anywhere in the world that is so entrenched in their own comfort zone and their spot in the pride cycle that they are both unable and unwilling to notice, much less try to understand or accept, a person whose life is not complimentary to their own as they see it. Most often these are people who never left their home state except for their mission or honeymoon. In my experience, there are more of them living close together in Utah than anywhere else in the world. (Several countries in Europe, Japan, three different congregations in Quebec and British Columbia, and in 14 of the 39 states I have visited or lived in.) The considered opinion and theory of my friends and family who have lived or are currently living here, is that these members have decided, subconsciously or not, that the church HQ is right up the road, so the Church can take care of its members so they don't really have to bother. in other places you may get small pockets of members like this, but in Utah they make up almost entire wards.
  17. He was Tesla! Understated, wonderful performance. Sadly, the women seemed to matter little to the men, they were valued only slightly higher than their other assistants. Maybe less, actually. It was all about the prestige they attained, about the looks on the audience members' faces, as Angier said in his last line.
  18. I don't know that its necessary or helpful for me to chime in here, I have said enough about this subject I think. But I agree with the OP and am determined that once we leave Utah within a year or so, we will never return. I have had all of the normal difficulties that come from moving into a new congregation, after all my family lived in 11 different wards/branches before I was 15. But never has it been anywhere near as difficult as it has been in Utah, and I have held callings and asked for callings.
  19. Interesting, I have never thought about this problem before, the no land-line thing. Your cell phone should have an emergency function that does not require the phone to be unlocked. My iPhone allows you to choose make an emergency call right from the locked phone keypad. I'm not sure what other phones are equipped with, but it might be a good idea to show her how to use that. And I have seen ideas, on Pinterest and elsewhere, meant for when you travel with kids but might be applicable here. For instance a bracelet with the plastic beads that have letters and numbers with an important phone number. A magnet on the fridge that is kept within her eyelevel and reach with those numbers and your address would be good too - with pictures of your faces and other things she would recognize as prompts.
  20. I'm glad he is back with his wife, she died 20 years ago.
  21. Why? I understand it's pretty heavy material, not for everyone. But the way the story is crafted, the little bits and pieces, it's simply masterful. And, David Bowie. Hopefully without spoiling anything.. my husband and I enjoy going back through the film and figuring out who exactly is playing each role in each scene. We think we're close to having it figured out, but we have watched the film together all the way through at least a dozen times now.
  22. The Prestige This is my husband's absolute favorite film and my near-absolute favorite. I read the book earlier this year and now I love the film even more.
  23. We save money in lots of ways, but the biggest one - living in a tiny (<500 sq ft) apartment for 3.5 years (by the time we move out next spring) is not at all my favorite. The ones I do like are: I never run the clothes dryer. The cheapest we can find one around here is $1.50 per load for 45 minutes. So I air-dry everything on racks at home. I have our laundry day schedule down to a science so I can run all our clothes at once, bedding and towels another day, and everything else midweek when necessary. It has saved us at least $15 a month for the past three years. Not a lot, but it pays for our cheap date nights. And I hate waiting around for the machines to finish anyway. I have never had a professional manicure or pedicure. What a ridiculous thing to pay for. I also only get my hair cut professionally twice a year. And I have never paid for any other "beauty" services of any kind. All of these things can be done at home, so I do. We haven't purchased any kind of beef (or any meat really besides chicken and fish) in four years. If we get a hankering for red meat, we go to a restaurant. But that doesn't happen often. My husband works for the company where he gets all of his entertainment and tech gadgets from. Major bucks saved. We very rarely go to the movie theater on a night other than Discount Tuesday. $5 a ticket, love it. And we just have our one vehicle, the car that my husband bought and paid off while in high school. It's got a lot of miles on it, we know a big change will be coming any day, but we are grateful to have never had a car payment our whole marriage thus far.
  24. I've never lived in a Ward that split while I was there, but I know there are a lot of less than pleasant things that come of it. One thing to consider though, is what it will mean for any people who move in to the ward over the next several months. I would have had a much more miserable time in YW than I did if that ward had not split just before we joined it back in 2001. The families of the youth had all lived in the area for decades, to say they behaved as a clique was putting it very mildly. We had a hard time making a place for ourselves but it would have been nearly impossible had the other youth not been compelled to consider new relationships. Being jolted out of your comfort zone is never a fun time, but it will certainly make a new ward stronger.