Or is it Catsup? Oh yeah, it's Catch Up.
Eleka Nahmen came in to eat at my restaurant with a friend from work. They were delightful. I hope I get that efy job again this summer so I can work with them. Even if that doesn't work out, I think we should still hang out some time. That same night I served a couple from South Carolina who had questions about the church, so I had a little micro-missionary experience. Good to remember that there are people out there who haven't already heard the gospel, and that there's still work to do.
Friday night my brother got into town with his friends. We had a blast. We went to D.I., ate at the hospital, played battleship in Helaman Halls, ate at my restaurant, played Battle of the Sexes (my brother's knowledge of feminine beauty products left us all agog, even BamaBeau, who answered the final question about some sort of fabric with metallic threads interwoven), and that's about all.
Sunday I played Diplomacy with Asmond and some of his friends from his Japanese class. I think I did pretty well considering it was my first time playing. One of the girls had told Asmond that she was a writer for the Hundred Hour Board. It was funny when I met her because she kept trying to pretend she was. Who does that? Anyway, I was able to tell him for sure that she was not actually a writer. I can't believe the irony of it. We left with her pretense intact.
Before all of that on Sunday, I had an interview with my new bishop for efy, and had a very interesting talk with him. He challenged me to get married before I'm 25. Well, easier said than done, right? I mean, I'm 24. He said not to rush it like my brother, Ouija, who got engaged after two months and is getting married two months after that. He said 4-10 months is appropriate before the engagement. He gave me the blessing I've been needing for a long time. He gave me all sorts of counsel about how to find a wife, a lot of it speaking to the speacial circumstances he didn't know I had. That made me very happy. I left there feeling pumped about it. I'd never had anyone be so candid with me about the marriage issue. Most bishops have always seemed to feel uncomfortable talking about it. I even had one bishop who called me into the office just to tell me that if I didn't ever get the chance to get married in this life, that the Lord would provide for me in the next. Yeah, thanks, Bish. Is a bishop of a Single's Ward supposed to say things like that to his flock? Anyway, my new bishop was much better, and I really believed what he was saying.
Monday I went with BamaBeau, Wiggle, D, and Esther to SLC. BamaBeau had discovered a restaurant called the One World Cafe. Instead of a menu they have a mission statement. The food varies from day to day, and includes a lot of Vegan, organic, and unprocessed stuff. We tried some strange grain called quineu or something from South America. And tofu and all that weird hippie junk. We ate in a kinda dirty room that just had small squatty chairs and a table and carpet and stuff. It was like an old hippie's living room, and there we were on the floor. The food was palatable, I thought. Now the really weird part about the restaurant was that there was a box for the money. Everyone just puts in what he thinks his meal was worth. I left 8 bucks, though I probably ate a little more than that. D left three dollars. D and Wiggle hated it so much. It was really great to watch their faces as they systematically tried and hated all the weird things on their plates. When we were done with that, we went straight to the mall and had real food. Then we went to the D.I. and then we came home. I spent the rest of the evening watching past Oscar-nominated movies on AMC all by myself, in spite of several invitations from other people to hang out with them. Crazy Republican KT was making macaroni and cheese on honor of President's day. Alecia (my boss) and my secretary were doing movie night. Toasteroven and Laulau were chilling. Bamabeau and Wiggle were watching Moulin Rouge and eating brownies. Rachel from work wanted to go ice blocking. I just sat there alone, though, feeling guilty for passing up all those invitations, and scarfing down the whole free pizza that I got from Heather Angela Hawks.
Now here's where the problems started.
Toasteroven taught a lesson about how every sin we commit stems from a lack of faith. I have plenty of faith in the Lord. But not much in other people. Particularly female ones.
There I was avoiding the company of several girls who'd invited me to do things. There were plenty more girls I could have called, too. So why didn't I? I feel like it will be very hard for me to find a girl who can love me in spite of my weaknesses. Anyway, I'm explaining before telling what I did. Let's have that the other way around.
I almost met up with a gay guy who found me and had been talking to me online. In fact, I probably would have last night, if not for Toasteroven's inspired intervention. This really scares me. There have been a few other times in my life when I've been on the cusp of falling or at the nadir of temptation and been saved not by my own strength of character but by the sagacity of those around me. I am so grateful for my safety net of friends, but why am I not strong enough to just stay balanced on the wire by myself? It's disturbing. I made some other mistakes, too, over the last few days, and that's not a good thing. Toasteroven made me consider why, and I think it comes back down to what I mentioned earlier.
You know how when you make a lot of progress in your life the temptations seem to kick into overdrive? Like Satan senses a lot of spritual activity on his radar so he tries to swat you back down? Well, I think that's what was happening here. Stupidly, I forgot what the main point of my talk with the bishop had been: that I could ask the Lord to bless me with a good wife, and that he'd give it to me. Ask, and ye shall receive. Instead I was left with his admonitions about what I needed to do fulminating in my ears, and that seemed great for a while, and then it seemed burdensome. Is that a word? Sometimes I feel very alone. I feel that the struggles I face are for me to face by myself. But I want someone there to hold me while I do. Anyway, that's all the more reason for me to want to find a wife. But this is where that fundamental lack of faith comes in. I have to realize that my lack of faith in womankind is really a lack of faith in the savior's ability to provide me with a woman who will fulfill my needs. I feel I have many great friends, but they all seem to feel further from me than I do from them. This might be because I have so many friends, and try to spend time with so many people.
Anyway. The bottom line is that I didn't make the big egregious error. I still was willing to in my heart, though. So it's that time again. Time to fortify where I've seen yet another weakness. I'm going to be all right. It's important for me to write about this here. Part of my problem is that I feel that it's important for me to be an example, and I don't know how to reconcile the dichotomy that arises when I do mess up. I forget where I read it (maybe Harry Potter?), but somebody said that bravery is not a lack of fear; it's facing your fears. So maybe righteousness is not a lack of temptation; it's facing temptation. Maybe I can still have weakness and be a force for good just by my willingness to turn around and do better.
Definitely it's more important that I make good decisions than that I let others see them, at any rate. And for now I can work on having faith that the Lord will provide me with a great woman who will be willing to be my safety net when I fall, and let me be hers.
Anyway, I ended up playing Argue with Uffish Thought, Novel Concept, and bunches of other friends last night. I was so grateful for that. I needed it. I'll be working a lot this weekend. Then Sunday is a potluck at Wiggle's, and then I want to have an Oscar party. All are invited.
Thanks for your friendship, all. Here's another quiz, but this time it's about ME. Two pounds of Jelly Belly Belly Flops for the winner when I get back from California!