Archive for the 'Social Events' Category
So next week is LDS General Conference and several things have arisen that should provide grist for the mill:
- The Ordain Women movement is again promising to try and enter the Saturday night priesthood session. The church’s response, “you can protest in the ‘official’ (read: ‘offsite’) zone we have established for anti-mormon protestors” — in spite of these being active, LDS women in good standing and none of which would categorize themselves as “anti-mormon”. Watch for repeats of the “sexes have different responsibilities mantra (e.g. “men + priesthood + work = good”; “women + stay-at-home + babies = good”) and more, “Why would we even WANT to hold the priesthood and have that responsibility?” bullshit propaganda.
- The overturn of Utah’s Proposition 3 (prohibition of same-sex marriages or “anything that attempts to approximate marriage (e.g. domestic partnerships)) by a federal judge last December — and which is scheduled for another judgment the week following conference. More playing to the “sacred” message of the Proclamation on the Family and all that that entails — until they ditch it as “non-scriptural” and the then “prophet was acting as a man” a few years hence.
- The LDS church’s cultural push to ensure women and girls dress modestly so as not to inflame the passions of men and boys (interesting that Joseph Smith had no problem being inflamed towards 14-year-old girls in spite of their extremely modest “pioneer” attire). Look for more attempts to blame women when men act inappropriately towards them — and ultimately a push to use the LDS version of burkas to ensure chastity for people who apparently can’t or won’t take responsibility for their own actions.
- President Thomas Monson’s fraud lawsuit filed in the UK — which was ultimately thrown out, but which cost the church hundreds of thousands in legal fees. I suspect that this is the just tip of the church being “vexed” by these types of lawsuits, as members realize there indeed is a “pay to play” requirement inherent in the modern church. Also, watch for the “Corporation Sole” aspect (the current church president literally “owns” the entire church and all of its assets) to be phased out in favor of foisting legal responsibility onto a wider, non-specific contingent of church administrators.
It’s been a busy little six months since last conference and apparently Satan is not resting.
So we’re at a work holiday party at the Marriott yesterday, when an ex-mormon friend and coworker rushed up to me to show me “breaking news” on his phone. It simply stated that a federal judge had overturned Utah’s Amendment 3, which prohibited same sex marriage.
This was a total surprise to me as it has only been the day before when the New Mexico Supreme Court had issued a ruling saying that same-sex marriage in that state would be legal, based on the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling earlier this year, which had lead to me and my husband flying to Minnesota to get married.
I thought when I read about New Mexico, that it would be a long time until we saw this happen in Utah.
But the very next day? (more…)
I was invited to participate in a scrolling, text-based conversation as a group of disaffected and ex-Mormons listened/watched general conference today. It was extremely enlightening and indeed fun as we all poked fun at the talks, choir and general staging of the semi-annual “recharge your testimony” event.
Quotes like this from Elder Uchdorf, “Doubt your doubts before you doubt your testimony”, were dissected, discussed and dismissed.
This LINK to a church-sponsored coloring book conference activity (I assume for children, but it could be singles wards as well) was quite fun.
Overall, the “two-minute talk” from President Monson was a disappointment as he showed once again that “prophet, seer and revelator” is just a phrase and means even less year after year.
Besides talks focusing on women NOT getting the priesthood and pleading for inactive members to “come back”, one gets a real sense of the issues facing this disintegrating church.
Twenty-four hours from right now, we will be legally married.
We fly out of SLC tomorrow morning and arrive about noon in Minneapolis.
Judge Mary Vasaly will meet us at 7:30 p.m. CDT and I’m assuming this will be completed shortly thereafter.
Several people today have asked if we have “the jitters” or “cold feet”, but after twenty-five years, that really is not an issue.
So the IRS (Internal Revenue Service) this past week ruled that they will treat jointly-filed federal taxes equally for both heterosexual and homosexual married couples — if the same-sex couple was legally married in one of the states that allows it — even if they currently live in a state that does not (e.g. Utah).
So — I decided unilaterally, that rather than wait until November to get married, as we had been discussing, that perhaps we should just bite the bullet and do it as soon as possible.
Consider it a life insurance policy.
Then the hoops began. We had planned on marrying in California, which has no waiting period, but also no appointments available for both the marriage license and the ceremony on the same day.
I discovered this after paying a non-refundable $100 fee to reserve a “time” in San Francisco to take out a license (I’m still not clear on where there is an additional fee for the license), only to discover that they don’t have any appointments available that week for the actual ceremony.
So — they have an option to have someone (legal US citizen, over the age of 18, non-felon) deputized for 24 hours to perform the marriage. Caveat: There can be no mention of god or religion in the ceremony, While this is not a problem for me, we were thinking of asking my honey’s TBM dad and that may be difficult for him.
I’m letting this all stew, having potentially lost the $100 reservation fee and decided to check our Minnesota — where marriage equality went into effect on August 1st. I have a brother that lives there, I will be going there on business next week, etc.
5-day waiting period.
Now I like Minnesota as much as the next person, but I do not want to spend 5 days there “waiting”.
I made another appointment to take out a license after I arrive there next Monday, but my honey cannot travel next week, so they have an exception process if only one of the couple can be physically present to take out the marriage license.
Paperwork downloaded, filled out and waiting be notarized. I will bring it with me to Minneapolis next week.
We then have 90 days to get married — in Minnesota.
Meanwhile, my cousin announces on Facebook this week that she is pregnant. And then 3 days later announces that she has gotten married.
The first thought that occurred to me after reading that: She didn’t have to leave the state to get married.
Last night we went to dinner with some old and dear friends at Pat’s Barbecue here in Salt Lake. Coincidentally, “Dale Watson and His Lonestars” were playing and we were all enthralled with his music, humor and generally great sense of what it takes to entertain.
One of our group has an aunt and uncle in Austin, Texas — who are groupies — and they sent him money and asked him to buy the band a round of beers.
Overall, a fun evening of barbecue, music, friendship — and why I enjoy being home.
A good friend and co-worker approached me on Monday at work and thanked me for our 25th anniversary party that he, his wife, and his two young daughters had attended on Saturday night.
He proceeded to tell me that after the party, he and his family had taken a leisurely walk in downtown Salt Lake City and that after questioning by his daughters, he had the “privilege” of explaining that my honey and I are not brothers — and to be able to delve a bit deeper into answering their questions.
He felt that his children had an extraordinary opportunity, at a tender age, to learn about us — and that it was a great experience for him and his wife to be able to explain our relationship.
He said that he was actually thankful that they had not tried to explain the purpose of the party prior to the event. He felt that because their questions were organic, now prompted by real-life experience, he was able to explain in a much better way than if he had tried to do it where there may not have been any curiosity or exhibition of readiness to find out more.
He thanked me again and then hugged me.
Last night we held our long-planned 25th anniversary celebration at the Marriott City Center hotel in downtown Salt Lake City and welcomed more than 200 people throughout the 4-hour occasion.
It was an event that my honey has spent months planning and every detail was carefully considered — and it showed (the Marriott Event Planner actually asked if he would like to consult with them on future events).
My oldest brother and his wife, daughter, son-in-law and two grandsons celebrated with us, as did my honey’s extended family.
We had friends and family fly in from as far away as Richmond, Virginia and several other states and were thrilled with every new appearance and the support and love shown by so many to us and our 25 years together.
It was also my honey’s 50th birthday and we celebrated that as in integral part of the evening.
Let’s do this again in 25!
Over the last week or two, there have been a series of protests gathering momentum in each of the largest cities in Brazil — coincidentally each the home of one of the new soccer stadiums being built for the Copa do Mundo 2014 [2014 FIFA World Cup] to be held in Brazil.
Ostensibly, the protests in São Paulo started because the price of a city bus ticket rose from R$3,00 to R$3,20, but it so, so much more.
The protestors have specifically cited the lack of medical care and hospitals that do not support the population, the lack of affordable public transportation, an underfunded and poorly-ranked educational system — and ultimately, the exorbitant price tag* for the new soccer stadiums.
The first couple of protests happened a block from my hotel last week — while I was there. I heard explosions, chanting, singing, helicopters hovering and lots and lots of noise.
The early protests were accompanied by extreme police action, but after a huge backlash (and video surfacing that belied the “facts” as reported by both the government and the government-pressured press corps), the police have backed down and are merely accompanying the largely non-violent protests.
As my puny show of solidarity far from Brazil right now, I posted this on Facebook this morning:
For all of my American (and other friends) who are wondering why I am posting so much about the protests in Brazil, just know this:
The people of Brazil are its real beauty and its real power — and they are finally beginning to realize that themselves — and that is a beautiful and a powerful thing.
Para todos os meus amigos brasileiros — saibam que todas as minhas forças mentais e emocionais são atrás de vocês.
“Pão e circos” [bread and circuses] suddenly isn’t flying any more.
- Brasília’s new stadium was projected to cost R$750 Million and has been completed at more than double that at some R$1.5 Billion (currently, about USD 800 Million)
- It will be used for exactly three games during the World Cup in 2014
- Brasília does not have its own soccer team.