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Sit back and enjoy the marital show

Dear Uma: You are upset by Jason's news, I can tell, even though you are trying to be happy for him. He is young to be thinking of marriage, I agree, but I think it won't last -- he's infatuated.

Dear Uma:

You are upset by Jason’s news, I can tell, even though you are trying to be happy for him.

He is young to be thinking of marriage, I agree, but I think it won’t last—he’s infatuated. It wouldn’t be his first infatuation, remember, and it’s not likely to be his last. Just ride it out with all your innate graciousness and charm. As you said, the most important thing is to stay in his life.

My first reaction was one of a sort of glee, I must admit. I have been longing to find someone to gift with the Jesus frying pan. A wondrous device that burns the face of the Saviour into everything it cooks. It sounds as though Jason, through his new Christian fiancee, will now be appreciative of things like a breakfast of Holy Son pancakes.

There’s a BVM nightlight, too, but that will be on hold till they procreate, along with the Armour of God pajamas.

The pendulum will swing, Uma. Look at your life; it is pretty much the antithesis of your parents’ lifestyle. You’ve done the same thing in the same place with the same partner for more than 25 years. My life has not resembled that of my parents, either, and recently I was reading about a celebrity chef who was raised in a macrobiotic household and is now famous for food featuring such goodies as deep-fried s’mores and specialty milkshakes.

Sarah’s parents sound challenging, I’ll give you that, but hey! they live in Idaho—not exactly close to Santa Barbara.

I wonder if they took it as a good omen that you live in a place named after a saint?

Speaking of saints, I was inspired by your news to go online and look at what’s available in the line of patron saints.

You must have a look for yourself; there is something for everyone and everything imaginable. I found one for you to pray to in the coming weeks: St. Eustace, the patron saint of difficult situations.

Every career and activity has a patron saint; mine is St. Francis de Sales, the patron saint of writers. I am going to start to dedicate my evening martini to this gentleman—just in case.

It’s not as though a religious person is utterly foreign to your experience. We both have friends who practise a religion of some sort, from Druidism to Catholicism to Sufism and everything in between. Will we ever forget Lari’s dip into the waters of Satanism? Sarah’s brand is not really one I know much about, but you asked, so here is a sum-up of everything I know about the Rosicrucian Fellowship:

They used to advertise in comic books. I remember seeing those ads and being momentarily diverted from the pursuit of Spiderman’s latest adventure to read one. These ads were short on information, inviting the reader to send for a pamphlet, or a book—I don’t remember which—and I, uncharacteristically, was never motivated to send for one.

I did, however, send for the sea monkeys, and for the book by Charles Atlas, both of which shared the page with the Rosicrucians’ ad.

Though I am not saying the Rosicrucians would not have delivered, the sea monkeys and Charles did not.

I know it was founded by a man named Max Heindel and was touted as being a herald of the Age of Aquarius. I know this from doing an article years ago on the Aquarian Age.

I have never heard of the Rosicrucians being involved in human or animal sacrifices, multiple marriages or reality TV.

Since moving to Watson Lake I have had no reason to pursue further knowledge of religions, either from a personal compulsion or a professional need.

To be sure, Christians are well represented here; they came to do good and they appear to have done very well. Many are among the more prosperous members of the community. Typically, some are one bead short of a rosary when it comes to exemplary behaviour in their public lives, and their private lives are as subject to unsavoury gossip as anyone else’s who lives in this small town.

Apropos of nothing especially relevant to this, but interesting nonetheless, a documentary on pornography revealed that Christian men download as much porn from the internet as do their unbelieving brothers, with one fine distinction: on Sundays God’s guys download 10 per cent less.

As to the Age, it missed this town. I know of at least one pony-tailed man and unconnected to him is a woman who wears Birkenstocks and does not shave legs or armpits. Occasionally, organic flax seed is on offer at the local grocery store, and there is a yoga class twice a week.

Other than that, the Age of Aquarius is not in evidence.

I would be more concerned about her career choice; a cop is harder to adjust to as a daughter-in-law than a Christian would be, no?

After all, a cop is someone who has rejected swinging on a star and carrying moonbeams home in a jar. Now that is ominous, even sinister, if you want my opinion, and I know you do.

The idea of a believer in God who carries a gun to work inspires some dis-ease.

As to her bisexuality, I don’t see that as being much to worry about. Clearly she has made a choice.

Leaving options open is something I myself cannot criticize. Choice-making, on the other hand, can be an exercise in downright cruelty; is there a more chilling sound than metaphysical doors closing?

Choosing implies a conclusion; ideally a well-thought-out one, but if it weren’t for jumping, I would never reach one, and I rarely jump.

So, what we have is Jason, at 23 years old, getting himself engaged to a Rosicrucian cop who was once bisexual and whose parents live in Idaho.

It could be a lot worse, Uma.

To look on the bright side, they are planning a long engagement while he finishes school. They are not going to be co-habitating. Sarah is dedicated to her job, in no hurry to tie the knot or to have children. She is quite open about her history and her beliefs. She has demonstrated a ready sense of humour (essential to survive you lot).

They are happy and in love; she is interested in Jason’s family and has enjoyed herself with all of you on the several occasions Jason has brought her home. All of you are saying you like what you know of her so far.

It is too early for consternation, too soon to be casting yourself into the Slough of Despond.

I think you are merely going through what most mothers go through at the thought of their children growing up, and away.

Having no children (that I know of) it seems to me to be a time of rejoicing, this ‘away’ part, especially.

Jason is a great guy; he’s bright and well adjusted, and clearly creative, and fearless in his choices. What parent could ask for more?

If, after reading this missive of merriness, this harbinger of hope, this feast of friendship, you are still feeling less than delighted, you can always pray to St. Eustace for a divine intervention. In your favour, of course.



PS ... send me a photo; there’s a lot to know from a face.

Heather Bennett is a writer

who lives in Watson Lake.