well...you know mormons. the blessing was said and the feasting began. the food smelled wonderful, but i was waiting on a girl from my ward to show up with her "friend" so i would have at least one familiar dinner companion. a few people dropped by the lounge area to encourage me to jump into the buffet line. they seemed suspicious of my explanation of why i wasnt running right over. the girl from my ward showed up dressed as a renaissance witch with her "friend" who was the devil on vacation(think a little red makeup, horns, and a hawaiian shirt). she makes the introductions and we headed to the buffet line.
the food was good, but conversation difficult. apparently the devil was nearly deaf due to damage to his hearing from his job so the ren witch had to keep leaning over to him and repeating whatever i said to keep him in the conversation. he was a very nice man, but i was really questioning his "friend" status with ren witch. he never left her side and when the dinner tables were removed to provide more room for dancing, he stood behind her and wrapped his arms around her waist, resting his chin on her shoulder. to me, this is not friend behavior. was she trying to keep it low key, worried that i would rat her out to the ward? i had to find out of course, so the next time the devil turned away for a minute i asked her. turns out he is 57 years old(shes 31), a widower, and would put a ring on it if she would go for it. the reason she wont allow it is that he refuses to join the church and doesnt want any more kids. she had him sign up for great expectations so he can find an appropriate companion while she continues to search for her peter priesthood. not sure how that works since she spends a lot of time snuggled up with the devil.
my "service" required me to move around the room a lot(no, i was not busting up couples dancing too close or making out in classrooms), so i was able to really take in the atmosphere. harem girl danced all night, but not with any guys. looked like her partner of choice was the pioneer girl. i dont think i ever saw the clown on the dance floor, but her friend, the sister missionary was out there several times with different guys. come to think of it, i didnt see tron guy on the floor either. mabye if i WAS on kissing detail, i would have busted the two of them making out in a dark classroom. theres a thought. i was surprised by how many couples there were. i got the vibe that a few were exclusive. personally, i dont think going to a singles activity is a good date. why would you come to a dance to snuggle in the lounge area when you could have a romantic evening at home? probably a tactic to keep things zipped up, but still.
despite my "good" attitude and open mind, the single adult scene and my perception of it remains unaltered. i wandered around for a bit more, wrapping up my "service", and trying to take in details so that i could blog them. i was also looking for anything or anyone that might deviate from what has become the norm in this mormon subculture. no luck. i was relieved that a few(all guys, of course)"got" my costume. one actually walked away singing "simply irresistable" . i have to make one correction to my initial statement about nothing being changed. i did notice two men who were quite the gentlemen, asking all the girls to dance. that was sweet.
i have been asked what i would do to change things, but i really dont have many ideas. sometimes i think the whole program should just be done away with. is it really effective? once you are kicked out of ysa and are in that outer darkness of 31 and over singles, how many people find their eternal companions in this program? i would love to hear from anyone who has a success story.