Friday, September 28, 2007


Over the past few months I've been working out some theories of mine - theories which I can use to guide me on my journey. Theories which help me understand the meaning of life.

My first theory I've blogged about before:
Girls are weird.

Does anybody understand girls? Straight guys certainly don't understand them. Gay guys haven't a chance of ever understanding them. Sometimes I wonder if other girls even understand them.

My second theory is one I've alluded to in recent comments on other blogs:

Straight guys are boring.

I'm still refining this theory; but, think about it - the only thing most straight guys ever want to talk about is sports, cars, and girls. It all starts when they are teenagers - I've worked with the youth in the church for most of my adult life and have witnessed it on numerous occasions. As they near that magical age of 16, most young men go through some sort of metamorphosis where they get memorized by the mere scent of perfume and gasoline. Now, the scent of sweaty guys, I can kind of understand that one a little. But, come on, it's a girl, it's a car - get over it, let's go do something fun.

This morning, after reading the latest blog entry by Romulus titled Re-evaluation, a new theory is starting to brew in my mind:

Mormons are goofy.

I'm referring specifically to the Mormon culture, not the religion (although, admittedly, there are some who consider the religion kind of goofy, but I'll leave that as a corollary to be worked out by someone else). For example,

  • Where did this whole don't drink caffeinated beverages come from? I once had a missionary companion who believed we should avoid caffeine in any form and in any amount - including chocolate. When we taught investigators about the word of wisdom, he would actually tell them that they would have to give up chocolate - a point of serious contention between us. He was totally unfazed when I pointed out that they sell chocolate desserts in the cafeteria at the Temple. But, in a sense, I could understand where he was coming from. If caffeine in beverages is bad then why is it OK in food products? As a young neophyte Mormon, I even asked that question. The response I invariably got was that the level of caffeine in chocolate is much lower than in coffee. But, if caffeine is bad, at what level does it become OK? As I matured in my Mormonhood, I started to ask where it was written that we were to avoid caffeinated beverages? Nobody has ever been able to point me to any official statement stating such. All I've ever gotten is explanations like "my aunt has a friend whose cousin attended a regional conference where the general authority in attendance said ...". My only conclusion is that Mormon's who believe we shouldn't drink caffeinated beverages are full of hooey. And, so I partake (I prefer Coke over Pepsi). On my mission, we had a secret combination of Elders who drank coke. We called ourselves the "Church of cheese and rice of rattle day snakes".
  • On a similar vein, who thought up that ridiculous notion that face cards are evil and of the devil? I've always been amazed at Mormon's who see nothing wrong with playing poker with Rook cards; but, let them catch you playing gin rummy with face cards and they start dusting off the bottom of their feet. This one I've actually done a fair amount of research on. The only thing I ever came up with was a talk from the early part of last century that equated card playing with wasting time - that poor GA is probably rolling over in his grave as he sees video games and other clever ways we've come up with to waste time even more effectively.
  • Have you ever heard a general authority come right out and say we aren't supposed to watch R-rated movies? No, I doubt you have. They tell us: "Do not attend, view, or participate in entertainment that is vulgar, immoral, violent, or pornographic in any way. Do not participate in entertainment that in any way presents immorality or violent behavior as acceptable." (For the Strength of Youth, p.17) Some simpleton has translated that to say that R-rated movies are inherently vulgar, immoral, and/or pornographic - the implication being that PG-13, PG, and G rated moves are uplifting, moral, and clean. I've got news for you - there are some PG and PG-13 movies out there which are pretty vulgar, immoral, and even pornographic. And, there are some R-rated movies which are none of those. Something else to consider. As I understand it, Canada has a rating system similar to that of the US; however, there are some movies which are R-rated in the US, but PG rated in Canada. Does that mean it's OK for Canadian saints to watch them but not US saints? Now, I'm not saying this to justify me watching R-rated movies. Quite the contrary - I don't watch popular R-rated movies - period. The simple reason is that I work extensively with the youth in the church - and they will sometimes ask, point blank, if I've seen a certain popular movie. It's much easier to just be able to respond "No" then to either lie or say "Yes, but ..." and go off into a tirade about how some R-rated movies can be OK (much like I did above). Now, I didn't say I don't watch any R-rated movies. I specifically qualified my statement by saying popular R-rated movies. A guilty pleasure of mine is to watch gay-themed R-rated movies. But, I have little fear of a church youth ever asking me "have you seen Latter Days?" If one ever does then I guess I'm pretty much screwed.
  • "... when ye are in the service of your fellow beings ye are only in the service of your God. " (Mosiah 2:17). I believe very much in giving service to others. This is a principal I've tried to instill in my children. But, in the LDS church, I've seen service gone awry. For example, I once saw a brother putting up chairs after church. I went up to him and pointed out that the ward that follows us will need the chairs setup. Undaunted, he continued putting the chairs away saying "I don't want to deny them the blessings they will get from setting up chairs." Uh huh!
  • Some Mormons take great pride in their pioneer heritage, and that's OK. But, I've seen some take this even further - as if having Mormon pioneer ancestors who came across the plains somehow makes them better, smarter, or more qualified. My grandfather was a drunken bastard who died before I was even born - so what! That has no bearing on who I am. And your Mormon pioneer ancestors have no bearing on who you are. You and you alone are responsible for who you turn out to be.

Don't get me wrong - I love Mormon's - I love being a Mormon. Some church leaders have told us "we are a peculiar people" - and I guess some have taken that statement literally and have gone to great lengths to be peculiar - even to the point of being goofy.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

He and I

I started to comment on Becks recent post Who do you think I am?; but, my comment was getting so long that I decided to blog about it.

Beck and I (and a few others) are in a different place than most in the Mormon queerosphere. We've been locked up tight for years, even decades. Speaking for myself, I was locked up so tight and for so long that the other me, the outward me, was able to convince himself that I didn't even exist.

Sure, I would manage to manifest myself from time to time - only to be quashed and stuffed down again - denied, repented of, and whatever else the outward me felt he needed to do in order to deny me.

But, things are different now. The outward me has finally acknowledged my presence. And, an amazing thing has happened - he is starting to realize that I'm really not so bad. He is even starting to accept that some of the good things about him, some of his talents and strengths, exist because of me. Sure, I have my mischievous and rebellious side - but even that manifests itself in him.

The outward me seeks to be stalwart and true - and boring. I want to live life to its fullest; and, I won't deny that, for me, life to its fullest can only be achieved with another man. But, just as he, the outward me, needs to accept me for who I am - I also need to accept him for who he is. So, I'm willing to compromise. I'll allow him to keep his precious commandments and stay true to his family and his church - but, he has to allow me some latitude as well. He needs to allow me to enjoy the view of a beautiful man once in a while. He needs to rid himself of his homophobic thoughts and ideas. He needs to allow me to express myself, however subtly. He needs to allow me to explore myself to better understand what it means to be me.

Slowly, ever so slowly, he (the outward me) and I (Abelard) are becoming friends. But, he is still embarrassed about me. And, he is terrified that others around him will become aware of me. And, his fears are strong - so strong that I wonder if I'll ever be able to break through them. But still, I am going to enjoy my new found freedom and expression. I will even let him write in my blog from time to time (although, I must say that his blog posts are kind of depressing).

Maybe one day, the world around him (the outward me) will change so that I can be accepted for who I am and he can finally acknowledge me. Maybe one day I will be able to express myself freely without embarrassing him. Maybe one day we can integrate ourselves together and become one. But, I don't see that day coming until there are some changes in the environment in which he lives. But, until then, I will need to consign myself to be his alter ego (what he likes to think of as his confused alter ego).

But, I will use that time to help him (the outward me) become better acquainted with me (Abelard) - so that he can see just what a great and fun guy I can be! And maybe, just maybe, he will start to allow a little of me to show through. Maybe he will allow those around him to become acquainted with me - even if it's just a little part of me. Maybe he will even stand up for me and defend me when others around him start to diss me and others like me. And I will help him learn to enjoy life and to not be so depressed and boring - I have my work cut out for me.

Friday, September 21, 2007


I don't know why, but I'm feeling angry today. I'm angry about being gay. I'm angry that I can't go out and be gay. I'm fed up with my closet. I'm angry that my wife is teaching a quilting class tonight and leaving me home alone on a Friday night. I'm mad that I have to mow the lawn tonight. I'm tired of the heat and humidity. I'm angry with God. I'm angry with the world.

Or, maybe I'm just frustrated.

Or, maybe I'm sad.

Perhaps I'm just being moody.

I don't know, I'm just feeling out of sorts today.

Friday, September 14, 2007

I don't care

Lately I just don't seem to care about anything any more.

I have a beautiful Oak tree that sits outside of our kitchen. It is under this tree that I rebuilt a deck earlier this year. I have several bird feeders and used to enjoy sitting at the kitchen table watching cardinals, blue jays, chickadees, and other birds at the bird feeders. But, now the birds are gone - because the feeders are empty, and I don't care!

I have a G scale garden railroad that winds around my back yard. But, it's been a long time since a train ever ran on those tracks. Part of the track is in need of repair due to erosion from the torrential rains we had earlier in the year. Other parts of the track are so overrun with plants from the garden that the track is no longer visible. There is an expansion to the track plan which I started over a year ago that still sits half finished, And, I don't care!

I have what once used to be a beautiful garden, an oasis from the cares of the world. Now it is overrun with weeds. Plants are in disparate need of pruning. And, I don't care!

I haven't been eating healthy. In fact, I've even had the occasional thought "maybe I'll have a heart attack and die". And, I don't care!

What has happened to me? I don't have any passion any more - for any thing. I just exist. I'm not overly sad or depressed; but, I'm not happy either. I'm just flat, and I don't care!

I've fallen into a funk and I can't get up!

Friday, September 7, 2007

The love that dare not speak its name

Two Loves by Lord Alfred Douglas (Oscar Wilde's friend and secret lover)

I dreamed I stood upon a little hill,
And at my feet there lay a ground, that seemed
Like a waste garden, flowering at its will
With buds and blossoms. There were pools that dreamed
Black and unruffled; there were white lilies
A few, and crocuses, and violets
Purple or pale, snake-like fritillaries
Scarce seen for the rank grass, and through green nets
Blue eyes of shy peryenche winked in the sun.
And there were curious flowers, before unknown,
Flowers that were stained with moonlight, or with shades
Of Nature's willful moods; and here a one
That had drunk in the transitory tone
Of one brief moment in a sunset; blades
Of grass that in an hundred springs had been
Slowly but exquisitely nurtured by the stars,
And watered with the scented dew long cupped
In lilies, that for rays of sun had seen
Only God's glory, for never a sunrise mars
The luminous air of Heaven. Beyond, abrupt,
A grey stone wall. o'ergrown with velvet moss
Uprose; and gazing I stood long, all mazed
To see a place so strange, so sweet, so fair.
And as I stood and marvelled, lo! across
The garden came a youth; one hand he raised
To shield him from the sun, his wind-tossed hair
Was twined with flowers, and in his hand he bore
A purple bunch of bursting grapes, his eyes
Were clear as crystal, naked all was he,
White as the snow on pathless mountains frore,
Red were his lips as red wine-spilith that dyes
A marble floor, his brow chalcedony.
And he came near me, with his lips uncurled
And kind, and caught my hand and kissed my mouth,
And gave me grapes to eat, and said, 'Sweet friend,
Come I will show thee shadows of the world
And images of life. See from the South
Comes the pale pageant that hath never an end.'
And lo! within the garden of my dream
I saw two walking on a shining plain
Of golden light. The one did joyous seem
And fair and blooming, and a sweet refrain
Came from his lips; he sang of pretty maids
And joyous love of comely girl and boy,
His eyes were bright, and 'mid the dancing blades
Of golden grass his feet did trip for joy;
And in his hand he held an ivory lute
With strings of gold that were as maidens' hair,
And sang with voice as tuneful as a flute,
And round his neck three chains of roses were.
But he that was his comrade walked aside;
He was full sad and sweet, and his large eyes
Were strange with wondrous brightness, staring wide
With gazing; and he sighed with many sighs
That moved me, and his cheeks were wan and white
Like pallid lilies, and his lips were red
Like poppies, and his hands he clenched tight,
And yet again unclenched, and his head
Was wreathed with moon-flowers pale as lips of death.
A purple robe he wore, o'erwrought in gold
With the device of a great snake, whose breath
Was fiery flame: which when I did behold
I fell a-weeping, and I cried, 'Sweet youth,
Tell me why, sad and sighing, thou dost rove
These pleasent realms? I pray thee speak me sooth
What is thy name?' He said, 'My name is Love.'
Then straight the first did turn himself to me
And cried, 'He lieth, for his name is Shame,
But I am Love, and I was wont to be
Alone in this fair garden, till he came
Unasked by night; I am true Love, I fill
The hearts of boy and girl with mutual flame.'
Then sighing, said the other, 'Have thy will,
I am the love that dare not speak its name.'

A silver lining

Our car was totaled - so what! We got a good price for it from our insurance company; and, we are getting a nicer car to replace it - and, it's RED (I can't believe it, I was able to talk my wife into the red one). I don't know why I'm so excited about this, I'll hardly ever get to drive it; but, still, it's RED!

Our dryer died - so what! It's fixed now, and it seems to be working a lot better than it was before.

The condensation drain on our air conditioner was clogged necessitating a service call (and a thinner wallet) - so what! We've been having this problem all summer with tiny gnats in our kitchen and haven't been able to figure out where they are breeding. Since the A/C's been fixed, the gnat population has dropped significantly - I think we found it.

I like guys - so what! Well, truth be told, I really like guys; but, that doesn't mean I can't like girls too (even if I don't find them as attractive as guys). I mean, my mother was a girl, my sisters are girls, my wife is a girl, my daughters are girls, my granddaughters are girls - and I love them all. Girls are soft and squishy, and they generally smell a lot nicer than guys (I still think girls are weird - but I mean that in the nicest way).

My dog pooped on the floor at PetCo - well, I still think it will be a while before I show my face in that store again :(
When dark clouds of trouble hang o're us,
And threaten our peace to destroy,
There is hope smiling brightly before us,
And we know that deliverance is nigh.
We doubt not the Lord nor his goodness,
We've proved him in days that are past.
The wicked who fight against Zion
Will surely be smitten at last.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

It still sucks to be me

The other day I needed to go to the pet store to get some dog food. I opened up our A/C closet (which is where we happen to keep the dog leash) and there was water all over the floor of the closet - from a clogged condensation drain (another $250 down down the drain [pun intended]). Anyway, I walked into the pet store with my dog, and I felt really gay (in a good sort of way) - until she pooped on the floor. I sheepishly informed the clerk and ask for some towels to clean it up. Instead, she got on the PA and announced for all the world to hear "Service 92 near the ProPlan aisle, Service 92 near the ProPlan aisle". I don't think I'll ever be able to show my face in that store again.

We went to look at new dryers and the salesman (whom I'm pretty sure is gay) just about sold me on this $800 top loading dryer (it was sooo cool, er I mean hot - the dryer, not the salesman, he was old). Fortunately, my wife is the reasonable one and called a repairman who was able to fix our dryer. Seems it blew a fuse or something. Although, $141 for a new fuse seems awfully expensive - must have been something more complicated than what I'm envisioning (at least that's what I keep trying to tell myself. The money is already gone; so, don't spoil it for me).

The insurance company called and informed us that our car is going to car heaven. We have a rental car right now; but, it's so archaic. I mean, I can't remote start it to get the A/C going before I get in. For that matter, it doesn't have a key fob so I can't even unlock it remotely. It doesn't even have power locks - you have to push the button thingy down [how quaint]. When I want to roll the window down, I have to turn a crank! And it smells like stale cigarette smoke

(is anybody feeling sorry for me yet?)

Anyway, so we're shopping for a new car (did I mention how much I hate shopping for cars?). We think we've found the car we want; although, we're leaning towards a 2007 model (cheaper, especially with the rebate) which limits us on our selection. The salesman found one (which he has to transfer from another dealership) which has all of the features we asked for, except it's this hideous amber brown color. Oh well, at least it's not white, and it has remote start and power windows/locks (and it will have that new car smell, which is almost as bad as stale cigarette smoke).