Thursday, February 11, 2010

A BYU Story

“I did not have sexual relations with that woman!”

I saw a link to a new website the other day called Passive Aggressive Notes.

What led me here was a post featuring a note written at my alma mater BYU, the bastion of overly self righteous Mormons everywhere. Anyways the note was left on the windshield of a young woman who had parked outside her then boyfriend/now husband’s apartment building, the infamous King Henry Apartments. It is now framed and hangs in their house. Here is the text in full:

Hi – You don’t know me but I’ve noticed that you go into #306 apt. late @ night & I sometimes see you coming out in the morning & it’s obvious that you sleep over there b/c your car is parked @ King Henry all night. I know that it’s really none of my business, but my roommates & I think that it is inappropriate to be staying @ a boy’s house all night. I feel like I should talk to someone about this problem, perhaps King Henry, but I think that you could & should fix this problem on your own w/out my intervention.

Thanks for your time
-Have a great day :-)

I just love the “it’s none of my business” line but then they proceed to make it all of their business. The underlying message is they have completely assessed the situation and have judged you to be a filthy sinner, and that is okay because as a stone thrower they are completely without sin. The obnoxious smiley face at the end is just perfect. Bloody hell, isn’t there always one of these people (the note writer) in every ward in the church.

Anyways this completely accurate depiction of all that was annoying about BYU reminded me of my own experience with single housing. I dropped out of college as a senior and moved to Minnesota; I like to say it was to “find” myself. After working for a couple of years with Juvenile delinquents I did manage to find something out, mainly that I was an idiot for dropping out. Anyways, my wife was working, we had two kids, a car payment, and a mortgage (our first house was only $27,000 – those were the days), but at the same time it was not possible to transfer to a local college. So luckily my Mom moved in to look after the kids while I went back to BYU solo. My wife garnered a lot of “who are the fancy people with the live-in English Nanny” around town because what little accent I have is completely non-existent unless I am living there; so it wasn’t obvious that she is my Mom.

I moved into single housing just of campus and paid the whole semester’s rent upfront. Now I went with single housing because it was under $200 a month as opposed to $1000 plus for married. While going over the contract it come out I was actually married and not single. Well this caused quite a stir and the manager went into the office to make a phone call to the owner, and after a lengthy conversation it was decided I could live in the apartment complex only if I signed a special contract that explicitly stated I would not have sex with my wife. I thought to myself “I don’t know what rumors you have heard, but it isn’t that impressive that it could reach to Minnesota”, but kept it to myself and quietly signed the papers.

It has become one of those great life experiences that sounds to outlandish to be true, but is really funny to share. You have to remember the culture at BYU, sex outside of marriage will totally get you expelled, so while I am not saying it didn’t go on just like other universities, unlike them it is kept very deeply buried in the closet; hidden away as much as possible. The best part of the whole experience though is this is the apartment I shared with the Mo-famous actor Lincoln Hoppe AND I get to tell people even though we have been together about 20 years we did separate for a while.

And now we are fifteen years on from that experience I can freely admit that when I went back to Minnesota for my one visit, Lisa and I totally did it, like several times.


Heather said...

I love this post. It is awesome and totally true. We are extremely judgmental here in good 'ol Utah. and I say 'we' cause I am too sometimes.
That story is crazy that you had to sign you wouldn't sleep with your wife! Unfortunately, it doesn't surprise me though.

Paigie said...

I cannot believe you assume a girl wrote that note. I looked at the note, looks like boy handwriting to me...

TStevens said...

It was you Paige, wasn't it?

Plus I never made any reference to the gender of the writer miss assumer

Anonymous said...

You totally wrote that Paige.