Sunday in Outer Blogness: Scary stuff coming up edition!

With Halloween coming up this week, please enjoy the firs batch of tales of this holiday’s history including its tragic devolution into “Trunk-or-Treat”. Also, the missionary costume pictures have already started appearing — and I hope there’ll be plenty more of them between now and next week! (If anyone’s up for a discussion, possible topics for this week include “What’s wrong with Trunk-or-Treat?” and “If it’s not OK to dress up as a Pocahottie, how can you encourage people to dress up as mishies?!”)

This was a big week for books! In my review of Donna Banta’s False Prophet I was careful in explain that she’s not painting Mormons as criminals, but Molly’s coverage of recent events is giving me second thoughts. Heather reviewed Elizabeth Smart’s story. Both Alan Rock Waterman and Denver Snuffer wrote about Daymon Smith’s Cultural History of Mormonism. On the other hand, Roger Hansen is underwhelmed by the quality of Deseret Book’s recent offerings.

(It was also a big week for recipes, with some tasty seasonal offerings.)

In church news, Runtu analyzed an an exciting new analysis of the Book of Mormon. Profet reframed Joseph Smith’s inspiring story. Some other Mormon morality tales are equally charming.

Conference tales are still rolling in, including some insightful analysis of the subtext of some anecdotes from General Conferences, plus notes from another conference that sounds even more fun! Here’s Micah’s talk from that one. :D

And those women knocking on the priesthood door just won’t go away! Heather posted a new slide show of the event, and Michelle described being shut out of an opportunity for service. April told a story illustrating how an all-male leadership structure, managed by kind, well-intentioned men, fails at meeting uniquely female needs, and here’s some statistical analysis of women’s leadership roles in the church.

In politics, more problems with Mormons and sexism. Ed Brayton was impressed by the analysis in a badass editorial in the Salt Lake Tribune. Why has far-right ideology displaced the ideals of the Mormon faith anyway? Semi-related: I’ve really been enjoying this series on Atlas Shrugged — the latest installment literally had me laughing out loud (at Rand), and then I followed a link from that article that wasn’t so funny. But keep in mind that not all Mormons fit this mold!

In personal stories, Alex told of being comforted by blind faith, Ren’s friends had some funny experiences hosting the missionaries. Silverfirexz discussed the importance of making an effort to understand family members who are believers, while Jen reminded us that our feelings have validity too. Liz answered some athiest FAQs, Just Jill is exploring her uncertainty, Marc wrote an ode to science, and Postmormongirl explained how fake-it-till-you-make-it does and doesn’t apply to teaching Biology.

Wrapping up with some fun stuff, check out the latest from Elder Gandy and the Bunyon!! But my personal favorite from this week of scary stuff was the title “It came from Outer Space Blogness“:

This morning when I checked stats, the latest was a visitor from none other than church HQ who came by way of Outer Blogness. Reconnaissance mission or subversive thinker on the inside? I imagine there’s a bit of both at HQ.

So, even if it wasn’t the “More Good Foundation” that grabbed and parked our old domain name, it’s not like we’re not on their radar… Anyway, have a great week!!

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6 Comments

  1. 1
    Donna Banta says:

    Wow! I got 2 shoutouts today–for the book and blog both. Thanks so much chanson. Also for the other great links. :)

       1 likes

  2. 2
    Holly says:

    “If it’s not OK to dress up as a Pocahottie, how can you encourage people to dress up as mishies?!”

    I was never a native American princess. I was a missionary. And when I dressed up as one, I pinned my very own name tag on my dress.

       1 likes

  3. 3
    chanson says:

    @1 — Thanks for writing a fantastic book! ;)

    @2 — Yes, that is such a big part of it. So many people sporting the mishie costume are doing is as a connection with their own personal Mormon experiences.

    Also, the folks at HQ intentionally designed the mishie uniform to be distinctive while being very close to ordinary attire. It’s really not comparable to stereotyped mish-mash of Native American culture that has been promoted by the culture that killed them for their land.

       0 likes

  4. 4
    Heather says:

    Thanks for both of the shoutouts. :)

       0 likes

  5. 5
    Holly says:

    @3: yeah. a missionary costume is just plain old clothes until you add a name tag.

       0 likes

  6. 6
    chanson says:

    @4 — I’ve been following your blog for a few weeks now — I think I found it through a comment on another blog, and then it was also on the fMh blog list. The posts you wrote about teaching the YW and YM of your ward about rape culture were quite interesting. I also like the recipes — not that I do food storage myself, but I’m curious to learn more recipes using basic ingredients like dried beans and grains.

       0 likes

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