Monday, November 1, 2010

Because God Likes a Nice Smirk

I can tell it's Monday morning, because the immaculately well-groomed young LDS missionary boys are in to check their email. They seem like nice enough guys. A lot nicer than I'd be if I was 18 and I had to sign up for a year of utter rejection (Actually, come to think of it, I did. It was called college, and went on for longer than a year, but that's a different story). They don't overtly prosteletize, so I like them and I'm glad they are here.

Not everyone feels that way. I have even had people complain that "there are Mormons on the computers!" Pointing out that there is no religious test for computer use or anything else in the library never does anything, either. This morning, I was looking up some "inspirational fiction"* for two women when three of the boys rolled in.
"Hi, Elders!" one of the women chirped, laughing.
The missionaries gave them noncommital helloes and continued on to the computers.
"Elders?" the other asked.
"That's what they call themselves," she whispered theatrically to her friend, "Isn't that ridiculous?"
"Why elders? They're just kids?"
"I know! Isn't it stupid?"
The last comment was directed toward me. I scrupulously ignored it and kept to the business at hand. As I placed holds on various volumes of Christian fiction, they traded nasty remarks about their fellow Christians, the Mormons. They detailed various suspect things about Mormon theology and practices, which, even if true, did not address the structural integrity of their own glass houses. (Don't get my wrong: the glass in my glass house isn't even double-paned.)

Before they left, one of them made the point of going over to one of the guys and bark-laughing, "Bye, ELDERS!" in a most non-library voice.

* That's the euphemism for Christian fiction these days. I guess Judaism as the foundation for fiction is just not inspiring, so go fuck yourself, Philip Roth. There is also Inspirational Romance fiction. Here's a pop quiz: which of the following two is a "regular" romance, full of premarital sex and occult goings on, and which one would leave you actually inspired:


West Regional Branch Library said...

We get Monday Mormons too!

Andrea, Maria & James said...

Thanks for being nice to the missionaries, even if your theology doesn't match up. Our son is a missionary right now serving in Las Vegas, NV. Actually, they have to be 19 years old to serve a mission. It lasts for two years, they don't have a choice of where in the world they serve, and they pay for it all themselves. None of the funding comes from Church headquarters. Not every guy gets to serve a mission, it is their choice and there is a standard of living they must maintain. They only get to phone home twice each year, so I love those once a week emails we get from our son that he posts in a local library. There's more info on the missionaries at if you want details.Thanks again for being nice to the missionaries.