Friday, October 21, 2011

The importance of being entertained

Sometimes I feel like the world is forcing me to think about something, because everywhere I go there are "signs." This week I've felt like Steve from Full House when DJ goes to Disneyland without him and he starts seeing her everywhere, including in his cheese toast. (Does anyone else remember that episode, or did I just make it up?)

This week, I've been seeing the same recurring theme in my Jr. high journal, on Facebook, in 2 Nephi, and in blog comments by David Farland. I figure that if my younger self, the internet, and the scriptures all make note of something, then it must be true.

You're probably wondering what I've been thinking about now, eh? And you probably want me to connect the dots for you too, eh? Too bad; I'm having too much fun being vague.

Dot one
Last night I was typing up one of my old journals, and I hit a section in the summer between my 9th- and 10th-grade years. My family and I had taken a mini vacation to St. George to go to my dad's half-brother's wedding (of course, I didn't know that this guy existed until I found out we were going to his wedding, but it was usually occasions like this that enlightened me about the confusing reaches of my dad's family).

I don't remember anything about the wedding (which makes sense, because according to my records we arrived too late to witness anything of consequence), but I do remember the hotel. It was probably the worst hotel room we ever had to cramp all 7 of us into; the room was kind of yucky, the hot tub was full of bugs, dirt, and leaves (I am pleased to note that I possessed the same common sense then that I do now when I stated that I didn't care about the hot tub, because who would want to boil away when it was over 100 degrees outside, anyway?), and the place just wasn't well managed.

Rather than dwell on our unfortunate circumstances, though, we elected to make the best of things, and we spent a lot of time outside in the pool laughing and playing stupid games. When we were forced to go inside, we made light of the situation, and possibly my favorite part of the day was fighting over mirror space and hair-doing appliances with my mom and sisters as we tried to beautify ourselves for the wedding that we missed most of.

Dot two
Also last night, I was reading in 2 Nephi when Nephi is lamenting that his posterity would go astray because of their wickedness. All the Book of Mormon prophets had to deal with (I assume) knowing that ultimately, their posterity would end up killing each other off because their wickedness was so out of control, and I can't imagine that was easy for any of them to deal with.

This has nothing to do with the point I am leading up to, but does anyone else ever get tired of reading Nephi's diatribes? He reminds me of a kid I went to high school with who was a bit self-righteous and overly favored by his father. The more I read about Nephi, the more I connect with Laman and Lemuel; if I had a little brother who was always right and faithful and who was always trying to make me a better person when I just wanted to sulk in my wicked ways a bit longer, I would definitely get annoyed and possibly lash out violently at times. Not to mention the guilt I feel whenever Nephi mourns over his own wickedness because, honestly, if he's a wretched man, what does that make me?

Moving on . . .

Dot three
Here's what I saw on Facebook this morning:

Dot four
And finally, the words of published author, talking about frivolous stories:
"There are those who would tell you that such stories are a waste of time. I'm going to argue very strongly that simply entertaining people can be a worthy endeavor, a profoundly moral deed, because it enables your audience to engage in emotional exercises that people need in order to remain emotionally healthy."
So, how did you do in connecting the dots that I have so masterfully laid out for you? Here's what I've concluded.

Sometimes it's hard to go through the motions of life because it feels like your efforts are worthless: the kids will just fight the entire vacation, your posterity will scorn the blessings you worked so hard to attain for them, and the passion you are pursuing at the moment really doesn't matter in the grand scheme of things.

To all that I say, so what? True, we were sent to Earth to prove something, but that doesn't mean we have to take life so seriously all the time.

And you all thought I was just trying to entertain myself as I tried to get through another Friday at work.

1 comment:

  1. I definitely remember that hotel room. It was disgusting, but we had a good time. I remember something about Tyrel being afraid of something - the bugs in the water?