Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Thoughts on Conversion

This afternoon as I was ripping staples out of some chairs I am trying to reupholster, for some reason the idea of a cheeseburger from Burger King popped into my mind. It could be that my Candida control diet makes me think of forbidden foods when I am bored but I don't want to ponder on that too much because it will only give me processed food cravings. Alas...

Any who, after the cheeseburger at Burger King thought, a memory emerged from the brain fog of my best friend in 5th and 6th grade. Shira was Jewish and an only child which made her exotic in my eyes. Plus, since her mom was single, she was also alone a lot which meant free wandering all over our neighborhood and lots of 7/11 Slurpees paid for with change absconded from our parent's dressers. Occasionally I got to go to synagogue with Shira and her mom on Friday nights which was THE COOLEST THING EVER! I enjoyed the ritual and the songs and "reading" a book backwards, the numerous celebrations, but best of all...they had food! After the service was over there was a social hour where they served a potluck feast, which in my opinion, was vastly superior to the LDS services I attended each week.

Here began my religious crisis. In my 10 year-old estimation, Judaism was way cooler than Mormonism and I determined that as soon as I was able to, I would convert. Shira certainly doubted my sincerity and explained to me exactly how difficult it was to become a Jew. I am not sure she was correct in all her statements but it sounded pretty painful. Either way, I was still somewhat determined to follow that path until the Burger King incident.

Often my family would take Shira with us when we went out to eat and treated her to dinner, and the same was true for Shira's mom. Up until that point while I recognized and respected my friends religious traditions, I certainly wasn't expecting them to be applied to me. Back at Burger King I hungrily ordered my cheeseburger only to have, indignity of indignities, my order stricken from the receipt because, I was informed later, Shira's mom didn't feel comfortable paying for a meal that was not Kosher. I was shaken to my core and as I sullenly ate my tasteless, plain hamburger that seemed ever so dry that day, I decided that I was happy being LDS; at least I could eat cheeseburgers.


  1. Makes me think of how some people won't convert to the LDS faith because they want to drink coffee. *Sigh* The things we place importance on. Oh, well, you were ten.

    But seriously, potluck after service? Sounds good to me!

  2. Ha ha, that's cute! We used to have "linger longer" potlucks here when we were the 1 pm ward. I miss that!

  3. I also like the ritual and singing (and dancing!) of going to synagogue. I do wish our meetings were mor interesting

  4. I just read this story out loud to Ben and we had a good laugh. I LOVE it! Plus your creative story-telling abilities and extensive vocabulary (absconded) make it so fun to read.