My First Foray Into Mormon Twitter

It’s been a busy semester, but know summer is upon us and I have all the time in the world to be productive, unwind or whatever I feel like doing. In this case that means repeatedly going down the Mormon Twitter rabbit hole.

Folks, it’s a weird place down there. I’m not going to try and explain all of it because I think it wouldn’t be possible to cover the whole thing in a blog. That’s much more of a topic for a book… or several. Also I’m not equipped right now to write that book, maybe someone else is though and they really should, because I guarantee it’d be a fascinating read. It’s such a weird place, theres like an alt-right section of Mormon twitter, a far left section, influencers who are trying to parlay their faith into a career and endless memes, it’s so bizarre and fascinating.

Again, not going to try and deconstruct all that, rather I wanted to take a specific look at one take I saw whilst roaming the wilds of Mormon twitter.

I’m not trying to bash the guy, but I see this take not just from him but from people all over the church and it’s always bothered me a little bit. I’ve cleaned up his grammar a bit for the sake of readability, but haven’t changed any of the words written.

I want to break this up into two parts, first that bit towards the end where he mentions how uncontroversial it is to be evangelical, catholic, agnostic, or atheist, but it is controversial to be a member of The Church.

First off, no. That’s not true. Depending on where you live, and who you speak with and a whole bunch of other factors it’s totally possible that it is controversial to be Evangelical, Catholic, Agnostic, or Atheist. If someone was a devout evangelical and lived in an ultra secular and liberal neighborhood here in the states you don’t think they would get bashed at all? What about someone very open and vocal about their atheism at BYU? Do you think in some Evangelical or Baptist circles Catholics get bashed on?

That’s just taking into account the religions the tweet brought up, I’m sure some of you are like me and noticed that there was no mention of eastern religions like Taoism, Buddhism, Hinduism, etc. How about being Muslim? You don’t have to look far these days to figure out that being Muslim is pretty controversial in a lot of circles. How about those of the Jewish faith? Jehovah’s witnesses? Scientology?

The list goes on and on, whatever faith a person might have you can pretty much guarantee that somewhere there’s a group of people who will ridicule them for their belief, and thanks to the internet it’s super easy for those that hate you to let you know that they hate you and just how much they hate you. Isn’t it wonderful?

Seriously though, insinuating at any level that faith in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is the only controversial one is either dangerously naive, downright stupid, or deliberately misleading thinking. Any of which is deeply concerning for someone with any amount of public influence. This was a thread of tweets so you can’t hide behind the limited number of characters thing. You had the space to put many different religions into your tweets and you opted to only mention a couple sects of Christianity, the denial of the existence of God, and those who just don’t know for sure.

Ok, now that I’ve got that out of my system allow me to move onto the bigger point of these tweets. The point Thekwakue is trying to get across (at least what I read) is that people shouldn’t give up hope and faith when they face discrimination as Latter-Day Saints, that because of the mocking, ridicule, bashing, and other various forms of discrimination they face they can know that their faith is real and their religion true. The world fears this truth and that is why they seek to tear it down.

This point makes way more sense if you honestly believe members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints are the only people facing religious discrimination. We’re not though, so this doesn’t make any sense. Should everyone who is ridiculed for their belief take it as a sign that they are on the right path? If you apply this logic to the extreme then members of groups like ISIS can take heart in the fact the rest of the world hates them, because they must really be on the right path. Same for a group like the Westboro Baptist Church. Opposition doesn’t prove true faith.

This narrative that because members of the Church are ridiculed that The Church must be true is one that is very common in the LDS faith. I’ve never been a big fan of it. I’ve always felt that it was horribly divorced from a greater context of world religion. Every faith is mocked, every belief is mocked, that doesn’t make any of them any more valid or true necessarily. Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints are not special in this regard. It sounds like I’m just bashing really hard on my own religion, but I think it’s important to be able to be critical of those within your own “group” so to speak, otherwise the discourse will inevitably become an echo chamber and you’ll be left with a bunch of morons patting each other on the back. No one wants that.



Honorable Enforcement

With the creation of the @honorcodestories Instagram account, there has been a ton of talk around the honor code office of Brigham Young University (BYU). In the last 72 hours or so the account has surged from 80 followers to over 12,000 (15,000 at the time of posting) and the owner of the account has been interviewed by a number of news channels and is preparing to give interviews for newspapers including at least 2 out of state papers. Suffice to say it’s quickly grown into quite the topic of discussion here in Provo and may become a talking point to even larger audiences as the week continues. I obviously want to get my two cents in because I’m just an opinionated punk who can’t help himself. It’s also something that I feel very strongly about.

I don’t want to spend a lot of time talking about the ins and outs of the honor code. You can read it for yourself here if you’re curious. All I’ll say is that most of it is already in line with teachings and practices of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and with the vast majority of students at BYU being members so most of that stuff shouldn’t be all that controversial. I don’t have a real problem with the honor code itself, if it were up to me I’d tweak a few things but nothing major. My beef is with how the honor code is enforced and the office that does that enforcing. So let’s remember that going forward. Honor code? weird but OK. Honor code office? Terrible and in desperate need of change.

Let’s also get something clear, one of the central ideas, in fact, the central idea of The Church is that Jesus Christ suffered in Gethsemane and died on Calvary so he could atone for the sins of humanity. This means that we can all repent of sin and be forgiven. Forgiveness and mercy are what’s emphasized in Church teaching. It should follow then that an institution like BYU and its enforcement of their honor code should emphasize forgiveness and mercy, but forgiveness and mercy are not what is emphasized by the honor code office. The honor code office is one that seeks to mete out punishment and what they view as justice at every opportunity. It is not a place where merciful solutions are sought out. This massive difference in approach is at the core with my problem with the honor code office. Nothing about what I’m reading feels like they have any love for the students they’re supposed to be helping.

I should also mention that I have no personal history with the honor code office. I’ve never been asked to come in. No punishment has been given to me or anything like that. I’ve been somewhat aware of the absurdities of the honor code office, but never in a direct way. It was just this week where I started to learn more about the specifics and these stories are what’s really got my stomach turning.

One thing about the honor code office that honestly just boggles my mind are the stories of students who have done things before they attended BYU (and therefore before they signed the honor code) that would be considered against the honor code and the punishments handed out for such actions. We all get why this is backwards right? How it’s totally unfair to punish someone for doing something BEFORE they agreed not to do it? Right? So we can all agree that’s messed up.

Another frightening practice I see in these stories that very much bothers me is how honor code office will call mental health clinics and demand confidential information about students who have used their services.

That is beyond a yikes from me. It’s disgusting.

It’s just a horrible thing to try and violate the confidentiality of a patient and their therapist. For some students, their therapist may be the only person they feel like they can trust with this sensitive information regarding deeply personal and potentially traumatic events in their lives and the expectation of confidentiality is one of the things that can help these students feel comfortable enough to talk about their traumas and begin to work through them and heal. I can’t imagine how much of a setback it could be for someone working through trauma to not only find out your therapist gave away your secret but you now have the added stress that you may be kicked out of university for trusting a therapist. Not OK.

Then there’s the difference in enforcement by the honor code office between women and men. A horrific theme that emerges is of women who get assaulted by their boyfriends or guys they’re on a date with. They (The women) then report themselves to the honor code office and are punished whilst the men get off Scot-free or perhaps a slap on the wrist. It’s totally unacceptable under any circumstance. Even if you think the honor code is totally backwards you would agree that the insanity should be applied evenly to all who agree to it no? If there is was even a single instance where this has happened in a place like a corporation or other professional environment heads would roll for something so terrible.

I don’t want to just sit here and complain about all the things I think are awful about the honor code office. I want to try and offer the bare bones of what a solution would be for them. It’s really rather simple. You need a dramatic culture shift within the honor code office. Remember earlier when I pointed out that The Church preaches forgiveness and mercy through Jesus Christ and his Atonement? The honor code office needs to reflect those teachings, not strive against it.

Students who make honest mistakes should not worry about whether they’ve jeopardized their entire academic career because things got a little hot and heavy with their girlfriend/boyfriend or they let peer pressure get the better of them and had a few drinks. When students feel this way their instinct is going to be to hide from their actions, and this develops a culture of secrecy that can only lead to worse problems.

Students who break the honor code rules should not be immune to consequences for their actions, and I would never suggest that, but those consequences should be structured in a way that reminds these students that even though they’ve fallen down that their school is there to help them back up, not kick them while they’re down. Shaming those who are trying to do good has no place at the Lord’s university. People in need of help should be directed to their church leaders who love and care for them, and if those leaders aren’t able to show that love for them we need to find the leaders that will. The Savior taught with an unending love for all of mankind, sinners and saints alike. If BYU really is his university the people who watch over the students need to go forth with that same love.

I love so many things about BYU, but reading these stories just makes my heart ache and my stomach turn. I hope things get better at the honor code office, I hope they change into an institution that people praise for love and understanding. That’s not up to me though. I’m just one student that believes things can and should be better. Later

Image sourced from BYU, I claim no ownership over it.

Hot Takes: Esports Edition

It’s april fool’s so nothing I say is going to be taken seriously so why not go over some thoughts I have about various Esports because it’s not like anyone cares especially today.

Cinderhulk Jarvan is actually like the stupidest build in the world. The entire point of picking Jarvan is using his strong early game ganks to create and subsequently snowball a lead into enough map control to capture Baron and push towards a victory. Nothing kills your effort to snowball a game like building 0 damage and trying to smack your wet noodle of a champion around. For the love of all that is good, play into Jarvan’s strengths and build Warrior.

I really liked the GOATS meta of competitive Overwatch. I know some people don’t like seeing the same 6 heroes over and over again, but GOATS required a lot of critical thinking from the people that played it in order to properly manage your ult economy and be aware of exactly what your opponents were capable of. It rewarded the smartest of players rather than those who were just skilled mechanically. As an added plus it curved the excessive use of Mercy in competitive and that’s just lovely.

Sidenote, Mercy’s resurrection mechanic is just bad competitive design. It allows teams to make enormous mistakes and have a hero come by and erase the fact that you screwed everything up. I think it’s not too bad now that it has such a long cooldown and Mercy ult doesn’t give another free rez but I’d still prefer it just gone from any competitive version of the game. Thematically it’s pretty dope though.

On the other hand I’m generally OK with resurrection mechanics in League of Legends, except Zilean. Zilean ult needs like twice the cooldown it has, at least from level 16 onwards.

Hungrybox might just be one of the greatest smash players to ever pick up a controller, but Puff is still the most horrendously boring to watch character in the game. I’d rather watch 100 wobbles than a single puff versus a campy fox match. I respect Hungrybox’s skill a lot, but good lord make it stop.

Fortnite could’ve been the biggest esport ever but Epic squandered it with game changes that knee-capped the competitive players in order to keep very casual players from feeling like they sucked too much.

This isn’t really that much of a hot take at this point, but league of legends champions hit their power spikes way way too early. I remember the good ole days where there were actual late game champions that didn’t become strong until they got 4 items or so and you needed to actually work with your team to enable them. Now everyone is crazy strong after 2 items and some champs just become useless later so no one even bothers to pick them. I get Riot’s desire to keep game times a little shorter, but this desire has made a lot of their champions useless and left to collect dust on a figurative shelf

A North American team will never win the League of Legends world championship. Ever. Also since I’m using Faker in the picture I should have a hot take about him. Faker is the weak link of the current SKT T1 line-up, and while part of that is due to how the team plays he’s still not doing his best and it’s showing.

Later!

Open Close Open Close

I’m sure every single one of us has had this experience where we close an app on our phone like Facebook, Instagram, Reddit, etc only to reopen it 5 minutes later. For a really long time, I attributed this, at least for myself, with the fact that I tend to zone out and really think about what I’m doing a lot of the time. Naturally if one spends half their time daydreaming then stupid things like closing Reddit and immediately reopening Reddit wouldn’t be that much of a suprise.

I want to try and get a real idea of how much I do it though, so for the next week, I’m going to keep a running tally of all the times I close an app and then reopen it within 5 minutes. Part of me is terrified to put a definitive number on it because I know it’s going to be way higher than I originally thought, but you gotta identify just how bad a problem is before you can work to solve it right? Speaking of the problems since I’m tracking one aspect of my social media habits I figured I would also track (roughly) my total social media use over the week. For the sake of clarity, that means I’ll be tracking time spent on Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, YouTube and Reddit. This number is going to be depressing. I have to sate my curiosity though. I just gotta know!

I’ll let you all know a week from now how that turns out, or maybe I’ll be so disgusted with myself I’ll quit the internet all together, who knows? Later!

Where I’ve Been

Where has the time gone? Seriously have you seen my time? I can’t find it anywhere.

You wanna hear a really obvious statement? Life gets really busy sometimes.

My life has been super busy lately, let me get you up to speed.

As of right now, I work two part-time jobs, one as an early morning custodian at BYU, (4am-8am baby! Sleep is for the weak!) and the other as a Deli Clerk at Day’s Market, a local grocery store. (SCHLICE SCHLICE) On top of that, I’m taking a couple of classes at BYU still. Only like 6 credit hours though so not totally insane, just partially. Also I’ve started writing pitches in an attempt to get a few freelance writing jobs, figured I should actually try and make money at this at some point right? With all that the few spare moments I have left over I try to make sure that I’m spending enough time with my wonderful and lovely girlfriend Lindsay.

This leaves just no time to do much of anything, let alone sit down and try to write blog posts that aren’t absolute trash. Now should be the time where I present some sort of remedy for this problem, but frankly, I don’t have much of a solution worked out. The best I’ve come up with so far is to get back on a regular sleeping schedule, but anyone who knows me knows that me and sleep have just never worked out. We’re like Ross and Rachel, one of is always pining for the other but it’s just not gonna work out. Maybe it will one day, I haven’t finished Friends yet so I really don’t know. I’m just trying to use the references now that I actually know them. (I wonder what the equivalent of “WE WERE ON A BREAK” would be in this analogy? it was only a nap? I don’t know, probably stretching it too far)

There is something I can promise for sure though. If and when I do manage to find some time that isn’t dedicated to something else I’ll be sitting in my chair, slapping away at my keyboard to try and write blogs. Just be aware that because of time restrictions I won’t have time to research anything so I’m just gonna have to write about what I already know really well. So lots of movie and League of Legends ramblings are coming your way! (YAY everyone loves league of legends!) Later!


Hot Takes: 2019

I did this sometime last year and I want to try and make it a yearly effort to just throw a bunch of hot takes out there. I want to do this one because it’s fun. Two, because I often make myself out to be an authority on whatever I’m talking about (and sometimes that is the intent) but mostly I’m just speaking from my perspective and my opinion really isn’t any more valuable than anyone else and what better way to demonstrate that then to just throw a bunch of potentially bad opinions out there. Three, Hot takes often spark some sort of conversation and I thoroughly enjoy those types of conversations. So let’s get spicy!

Hot Take #1: The Greatest Showman still sucks. I’ll admit that I’ve come around on the music (mostly) but my goodness the rest of it is just so boring.

Hot Take #2: If you cook your steak well done or refuse to even try sushi because anything not thoroughly cooked is scary, you are a coward who doesn’t understand how to enjoy the food. I didn’t think this was that hot of a take but I’ve talked to more and more people in the past year who refuse to eat steak if it isn’t well done and I’m just saddened by that.

Hot Take #3: Being single is objectively worse than being in a relationship and single people constantly spread “fake news” about it being the other way around. I don’t blame you if do say that, I used to spread this erroneous narrative myself, but remember you’re lying to others, and to yourself when you speak these lies. Don’t give me this, “but my independance!” nonsense. Millions upon millions of people want their independence as well as a relationship, find another one of those people and start dating them. Maybe I’m biased on this one though…

Hot Take #4: In-N-Out and Little Ceaser’s are basically the same thing. Cheap food that’s good for its price point but entirely outclassed by anything even slightly more expensive. (I know I bash a lot on In-N-Out, but it’s way too funny to me how upset In-N-Out fanatics gets when you dare question its supremacy over the fast food game.)

Hot Take #5: Cable news in its entirety isn’t worth watching, at least in the US. This probably isn’t even that hot of a take, but all of the cable news networks are pretty much garbage. CNN and MSNBC dramatically overhype things, Fox basically just says nice things about Trump regardless of what he’s actually doing and… is there actually anyone else? At least anyone else that people actually watch? Don’t think so and frankly I don’t care.

Hot Take #6: Black Panther was the most over-rated movie of 2018. DISCLAIMER! I’m not trying to discredit Black Panther’s cultural significance, in fact, I think it’s fair to say it was the most significant movie of the year, but when you look at the nuts and bolts of it all, its a barely above average Marvel movie. Infinity War is a better movie, so is Thor: Ragnarok, Doctor Strange, Winter Soldier, Iron Man 1, Avengers 1, Civil War, and both Guardians of the Galaxy movies. That’s 9 of the 20 released so far. It’s smack dab in the middle. FIGHT ME.

Ok, that’s probably enough hot takes for now, and I have a feeling the Black Panther one is sure to get some people riled right up. Later!


Resoulutions

Setting vague and arbitrary goals for the year, the New Years tradition we all still do for some reason.

Oh baby, another year come and gone, and it’s time now to get 2019 going.

…I can’t believe how absurdly corny that sounded. Let me try that again.

2018 is over and it’s time to get our New Year on!

Nope… That’s not it either…

Happy New Year everyone! I hope you’re as excited as I am for 2019?

What am I doing? Is this an infomercial? Goodness gracious…

Screw it. We all know what time of year it is, and we all know because we can read (and if you can’t then… you’re probably a baby and slapping mommy’s iPad somehow brought you here, neat!) that I’m talking about my resolutions for 2019! WHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO GET EXCITED PEOPLE! AREN’T YOU SO PUMPED TO READ ABOUT A RANDOM GUYS PERSONAL GOALS FOR THE YEAR! IT’S SO IMPORTANT THAT YOU READ THIS!

Was that too much? Probably. Oh well, leaving it in anyways.

Ok resolutions for 2019, first and foremost: Continue to push myself creatively into new areas that might feel uncomfortable at first. I really enjoyed getting into a lot more self-reflective and introspective writing in the latter half of 2018 and hope to really continue to do that more in this year.

Secondly: Lose the weight you gained back last semester and clean up your diet. Around septemberish I hit 170 pounds which felt like a pretty solid accomplishment for me, then I ate out way way more and excersized way way less and came right back up to 190. Not okay, gotta get back down and maybe even push myself down to the 160 range, salads here I come.

Third and probably finally: As I work on my outer appearance don’t forget to work on your inner self. I don’t think I’m a bad guy, not by a stretch, but we can all work harder on being better people to those around us, can’t we?

Ahhh Yes, two insanely vague and arbitrary goals I can flip a coin to decide if I achieved next December and one that actually is tangible and defined. Should be a great year, hope to see you all keep reading here throughout the year! later.

Wait Wait I forgot one more resolution. Look into how the whole “selling your soul to the devil for fame and fortune” thing works. Like can I sell half my soul for just the fortune? Sounds pretty good to me, and what do I really need my soul for? Gingers don’t have ’em and they seem to be doing just fine honestly.

2019

I’ve been pretty quiet on the blog this month and thats mostly got to do with the insane schedule that is December when you’re a student (actually that probably extends to anyone, it just feels extra rushed when you add finals to it) but also I’ve been using what spare moments I’ve had to think about and reflect on the year as many of us do.

I’ve been focusing most of my reflection on how I did as a blogger this year and I feel like I can confidently say I did ok this year. I doubled the number of posts on this blog this year, I wrote a bunch of blogs that really felt good about and wanted to write for a long time, but the year was not without its own stumblings.

I really feel like I’ve struggled to write about movies, more so this year than other years. I feel as though that when I did write about movies I got very scatterbrained and wasn’t able to convincingly convey why I thought a movie was good or bad or even why people should see it. I think a big part of my problem was that I kept splitting myself by trying to give a personal take while also sound objective and those two things just do not mesh at all. Going into 2019 I want to really focus more on my personal take on movies, how I connect with the stories, characters and moments. A little less focus on how nice the camera movement is and other stuff like that.

Keeping on the topic of movies I actually want to cut back on how many movies I see. For the past few years I’ve consistently managed to make a hundred odd trips to the movies, while this resulted in me seeing some wonderful movies I might not have seen, it’s also resulted in me seeing some huge turds of films. (I’m looking right at you Wrinkle in Time, gah you suck.) I really like to skip as many turds as possible in 2019 as it comes to films. In the past, it’s been fine because I’ve had a ton of spare time on my hands by not being social at all, but now that time is a less abundant resource (not complaining about that, I love having things to actually do outside of school) I really need to focus on movies I’m truly excited about.

Wow, I did not intend for this post to be so focused on movies, I really wanted to focus on what I will be writing about in 2019, and that’s me. Just me. Not in like a egotistical sense like, “All I want to talk about it me” but rather focusing more on the introspection, self-reflection, and personal opinion that I wrote during the summer and fall of this year. It was fun to write and honestly it was better than 90% of the other stuff I’ve written here. So get ready to take a closer look at Jonny Tollestrup in 2019, or just like don’t read this blog, it’s your call. Later.

Charming Girls and Twisting Words

Ok so yesterday I worked through what I thought was some of the most dangerous thinking presented at this dating seminar I went to earlier in the week. Today I want to be less depressing and focus on some of the more silly things said. Let’s have some fun shall we? Also I think I mentioned this yesterday, but I don’t mean to rag on anyone in particular here, any issues I have are more with the general dating culture here than with any partiuclar individual, so relax. 

I’ll start today off with another quote,

“Women want a prince (or a high-quality man) to charm them until they simply can’t resist him any longer”

Yup, you nailed it, buddy. I mean what women doesn’t want someone who relentlessly pursues them until they simply submit themselves and go out with you. Sounds like true love to me. Maybe I’m not being fair to them right now and twisting their words, but come on! You really don’t have twist things very far to get to where I’m at! Like who uses word like “can’t resist” when they’re talking about dating and doesn’t expect people to give them this look.

If you’re dating life has enough opposition that the word “resist” is the first thing popping into your head than chances are your strategy needs a little refinement.

Now I can already hear my father typing up a comment for this, “Your mother ran away from me the first time I talked to her, I would call that resistance and it all worked out didn’t it?” Yeah, dad, it did, and I’m really grateful for that because otherwise I wouldn’t be here to make fun of you, but I think we can both agree that your situation is more of an exception to the rule than an example that proves it. Generally speaking, if a girl physically runs away from you that’s a sign to pack it in and take the L, make sure you hold on tight to it because you need to learn from this particular L. (Hats off to you dad for being oblivious enough to ignore that though so that I could exist! WHOOOO)

By the way I’m totally comfortable telling that story because I’ve heard my dad tell me it I don’t know… 7 billion times and somehow each time he tells it he owns it even harder than the last time. He’s actually totally unashamed about the whole thing. Honestly it’s one of the things I really like about him.

Back to the seminar though…

Let’s move onto specific terminology used. Hey, if I use the term “Social Proof” what springs into your head? Is it like a piece of paper you have that proves you know how to socialize with people in a non-serial killer way? Or maybe like a mathematical proof that demonstrates why nice guys finish last? Or perhaps its a reference to a term used in a sociological study looking into dating practices? Nope all wrong. Social proof is basically when you have cool friends so girls know you’re a cool person. I’m not a woman so I might be wrong about this, but I’m not currently aware of anyone who entered into a relationship with someone because they had cool friends. Sure I know people who set their friends up with people, but they don’t go on that date and have the girl say, “you’re friends with Billy so I know I should be attracted to you.” Like just… yeesh.

“Princes are able to elevate a princess to the station of a queen.”

Another lovely quote ain’t it? I’m sorry if I caught you off guard with the poetic beauty of it. It’s just such a well-crafted sentence it really des… I can’t keep playing this thing straight. Good lord this thing sounds like they took comments from r/niceguys and just plastered them on their PowerPoint (of course there was a PowerPoint! They’re professionals.) Like the sentiment is actually fine, if you’re a good person then you should be able to make your partners life better, but do we have to phrase it like that? Ladies just imagine for a moment a guy that you’ve been on a couple of dates with, they’ve gone ok but you’re not sure how you feel about him yet, then he drops this line, ” You are a princess, but I want to make you a queen.” If you got any sense it’s just like

There’s more to go through here, but I’m lazy and I’m kinda hoping to stretch this thing out until Christmas break so we’ll go over more of it another time. Later!

Princley Dating

“A prince knows he has many options.”

This is a quote from a dating seminar I attended last night. Now I know what you’re thinking, “Why are you going to dating seminars, Jonny? I thought you had a girlfriend? Did you already screw that up?” No I did not and yes I still have a girlfriend. She actually encouraged me to attend this thing. Not entirely sure what to make of that though… regardless that’s not the point,  I’m here now to talk about that quote because I think there’s a fair bit to unpack there and it’s just the first of many crazy things I heard last night. We’re going to be talking about this thing for a while folks. Buckle up.

Let’s being with what the speakers intended meaning. Basically, they were rephrasing the age-old saying of “There is plenty of fish in the sea” meaning that you shouldn’t get discouraged by rejection in dating because there are lots of people out there who could potentially be “the one”. (I say that even though I absolutely don’t believe in there being “the one” but that’s another thought for another time.)  You rephrase it so that people think the thought you’re having is a new and original one instead of something people have been saying forever. It gives you the authority in a sense. You have a unique view on a topic so people should listen to you. In that sense, it’s whatever. It sounds fancy and nice I guess.

However, I think there’s more to it though.

First off let’s quickly move through the use of a royal title to describe ourselves. You’re not royalty, neither am I. We’re ordinary people and believing that you are a “prince” is just cocky. Don’t get me wrong we should all believe in ourselves but not believe we’re better than others. How about “A good man knows he has options?” Is that too much to ask?

That being said what I really want to dig in on is the use of the word “prince”. Why use that word in particular? Wouldn’t it make more sense to use the word king instead? Why leave yourself with a lesser title?

Because the speakers do not believe that they or anyone in their seminar are kings. Kings are married. Princes are single. In order to ascend to the throne of fulfillment, you must have a queen. This is in my mind, is very dangerous thinking. Sidenote I’m not trying to rag super hard on these guys either, because while they are the ones that put it into a phrase I think this kind of thinking is very pervasive throughout YSA culture, especially here in Utah.  Far too many people here define their success in life by whether or not they’re a relationship. This leads them to believe that if they are single they are doing something wrong.

This is wrong.

Marriage does not make you a better person. In fact, crazy hot take here, but being married doesn’t really change who you are at all it just changes how you file your taxes. If you are of the mindset of dating just to get married so you can feel like a complete person then pal I’ve got some important info for you. Marriage isn’t going to make you feel better about who you are, not in the long run and if you get married because you think that being single is a lesser existence than I feel a tremendous sense of sorrow for your spouse.

Being single is a perfectly good thing to be, and so is being in a relationship. Moving from one to another doesn’t say anything about your character. Maybe if you become single because you cheated that says something, but that’s more about you being a cheater than you being single again. Being single and being in a relationship are just states of existence. Don’t worry about them, worry about trying to be your best self, find fulfillment in your own life instead of someone else’s. If you believe that you are not successful in life without a relationship you do not love yourself, and if you do not love yourself you cannot be a caring partner in a relationship, at least not to the level the other person deserves.

If you think you’re a prince, don’t go looking for a princess. Ask yourself why you aren’t the king of your life? Just don’t be egotistical about it. Remember, most of us are just ordinary people and thinking were the royalty of humanity is plain ole arrogant. Just be a good person and don’t worry so much about your relationship status. Later.