Do not attempt to adjust your computer monitor, this blog’s title is unfortunately correct. I am, in fact, that token single guy in a funeral ward. So how does one find themselves in such a predicament? By finding themselves what they believe to be the perfect apartment…
I had a new job, new location, and new life. This meant I needed to find a new apartment. However, due to budget constraints, I spent days looking at Salt Lake City apartments that made the Bates Motel look like the Anniversary Inn. Bugs, dirty carpets, creepy eyes watching through parted shades, and that strange beating heart sound beneath the floorboards.
I finally thought I had given up when I found the place. It was perfect! A signature and a check was all it took. I was finally home.
Now it was time to meet the ward.
Sunday School was first on the schedule. What an awesome opportunity to meet everyone in a smaller more intimate environment than sacrament meeting. I bet there were lots of ladies hoping a tall handsome man, such as myself, would someday walk in.
Stepping up to the Sunday School door, I lick my thumbs and slick back the brows. Showtime!
I strut into the room and stop.
Toto, I don’t think we’re in Kansas anymore.
An older lady walks up beside me, concern written on her face. “Brother, are you lost?”
I probably didn’t need to answer her as my face said it all. “Yes, I think I might be. What ward is this?”
She blinks rapidly for a moment and then turns to her already seated husband. “Tom, what ward are we now?”
The much older gentleman looks up at her, thinking for a moment.
While waiting for him to remember, I’m sweating. Rings begin to form beneath my arms, and all I can think is Please, not this ward. Please.
“Yeah, uh…it’s the _ ward.”
I smile, the stillness of my lips hiding the reality inside me. $@%*!
I turn from the smiling couple to survey the rest of the Sunday School room.
There are no young girls. No flowing trusses of black and brown hair; only silver and well, no hair. Heck, there aren’t even any guys my age. It doesn’t matter which ‘team’ I’m playing for, there’s no one to play with! The entire room is composed of senior citizens ranging from 65 to…however old that guy is over there; the one who isn’t moving. Someone should probably poke him to make sure he’s okay.
The class is about to start, so I begin to make my way through the literal parking lot of scooters to the only chair available, when a golden ray of hope catches my eye. Next to the empty seat is a long golden blond pony tail. A REAL ponytail for that matter.
My heart jumps. A friend! A companion!
Heck, at this point I might as well just propose.
I slip into the chair beside her. I just know she’s going to see me and her eyes will light up at the prospect of another young human being
She turns towards me. My heart skips a beat…
And VERY 16.
My heart sinks. Turns out she’s here to visit her great-grandmother. Figures.
The opening prayer is said, Romney is blessed, and we all say ‘Amen’.
Before the ‘N’ in amen can leave my lips, the Sunday School teacher is squealing to the audience about a new young couple that has just joined their ward. My ears perk at the word ‘young’, and I look around.
I’m confused, I don’t see any- Oh, crap.
She’s looking at me and Sweet 16. I’m guessing the younger generations look all the same to the older ones. A microphone is placed into my hand and it is requested I stand and introduce ourselves.
“Hello brothers and sisters. My name is John Mabey and well, we’re not a couple…” My nerves take over and Stupid John steps in. “I don’t really have anything to do with her. She’s just visiting.”
Smooth. Real smooth.
The whine of several hearing aids (the senior citizen equivalent of crickets) are the only sound heard in the room. Well, that and the shudder of Sweet 16.
I correct myself. “What I really mean is that she is a really sweet girl, but we are not married or dating as she’s just 16 and I’m 31.”
I think my lack of tact has just killed half the audience.
I hand the microphone back to the teacher and sheepishly sit back down. Sweet 16′s great-grandfather is glaring at me, and all I want to do is steal someone’s scooter and flee.
To Be Continued…