Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Profanity at the Pulpit

"Men must quit swearing"
                            -President Brigham Young
Sunday I presented to my singles ward, a talk on the Book of Mormon. Sweatin' it at the pulpit brought to mind another fond memory I have involving a microphone and a dedicated building- namely the very last time I bore my testimony in the BYU-I 12th ward 2nd stake. Truly a moment that ought not to be trusted quivering, wavering memory alone- but footnotes in the pages of history!
As I said early: this was to be the very last time I would ever call upon the Hinkley Building microphone to grace my ward with quotable words of profound depth. I was graduating.
For any of my readers unfamiliar with BYU-I traditions (aka nobody- that would entail I had readers) the last fast Sunday of the month graduating students alleviate their guilty conscious' by finally bearing their testimony. This last testimony makes up for all the fast Sundays they shirked the pulpit. Not me,I had borne my testimony 2 months before. I was not due for another long walk through the aisles for some time. Yet without my permission my psychotic feet dragged me to the stand where my unruly tongue defiled that sacred overflow/gym/chapel.
Here is exactly what I said:
"Hello everyone blah, blah, blah... I know I already bore my testimony this semester, but I am graduating, so I figured, what the hey- I'll say it again..."
I continued to bear my sweet testimony but the rest of the room was unnaturally silent. I was noticing a lot of gasping and dropped jaws. Then Bishop Forebush busted up. His laughter was permission for the rest of the room to giggle and whisper. I was completely oblivious to the joke. When I sat down (looking rather rather perky, content and naive) my roommate informed me that although she knew I didn't say it everyone in the room was under the impression I had exclaimed "what the hell!" at the pulpit when I had really said "hey, I'll".
So now I hunch over in a fit of hysterics while everyone within viewing distance stares me down.
After sacrament I gave my tithing to the Bishop who informed me my testimony really woke everyone up (particularly Brother Brown who looked a lot like he was snoozing before hand). I apologized and told him what had actually happened. He really thought I had blasphemed, not that it bothered him. He had told the member of over Stake Presidency who was setting next to him "She's quite a character." The reply was "I can tell!".
Brother Curbs told me that he had someone ask him if I was raised on a ranch. The next night Bishop told me he woke up in the middle of the night laughing about it.
When they came to deliver oranges and wish our apartment good luck with finals they used the phrase "hey I'll" to an excessive degree.
I'm really glad they'll have something to remember me by.


  1. just so you know, I am a loyal reader! also, I LOVE 12th ward! there are SO many fond memories attached to it! thanks for the walk down memory lane :)

  2. Clara, I want to express a very fond "thank you" for allowing me to re-live this hilarious experience. I sat here laughing out loud for a good while. Miss you and love you!

  3. Clara this is HILARIOUS!!!! I can see bishop laughing his head off. I would have busted out also. Classic Clara. Hey new phrase for you. You are such a good writer! I felt like I was there.

  4. Clara I wish so badly I had been there for this historic testimony! Also you tell a great story my friend, excellent writing.

    Also I am commenting on all your blogs...I hope this does not offend thee...

    1. Okay double comment, but I just have to say that I am sitting at work and I'm supposed to be working on excel files or something boring and I keep laughing at your blog, but I try to laugh quietly so I start snorting and choking and I am making a fool of myself, but I really don't care because this is hilarious.

  5. I love getting comments on my blog. Is there anything more fulfilling as a blogger than to know that the blog is read? Thanks guys, needed the confirmation.