Monday, April 25, 2016

Forced Entrée

Thank you for taking the time to skim, read, delete, or burn this letter. Your participation is greatly appreciated.
Just last Wednesday, I did an incredibly stupid thing. In fact, for those of you who know me in at least some small degree will be surprised that I haven't yet written home about something incredibly spacey that I have done (Unless I have written about such an incident, which if I did, I have already blotted the occasion from memory)
Before I tell you about my incident, I would like to tell you that our apartment was broken into last week. The most interesting detail of this story however, is not what happened, but actually who did it, or "whodunnit", as either an uneducated fool or an entertainment marketing specialist would say. What is it with us humans? Why do we find misspellings and grammatical genocide so appealing in  logos, brand names, team names, and other marketing devices? We just end a plural noun with a 'Z' instead of an 'S' and somehow that makes it instantly cool. The Hornets = Average. The Hornetz = Wickedly awesome! Grav-E. Just spelling things weird or throwing in RanDum capital letters and such makes it kool, I guess. I want to open a Mexican restaurant and call it "Tawko SLAWDERR-Howse: Where the animals be gettin' slawderred be4 yer eyes"!
Sorry. I got way distracted by that.
Anyway, the perpetrator of the crime was.... *drum roll*... our Bishop! That's right! He got jealous of our TV and in a moment's bad decision became a deplorable reprobate with no respect to property, life, religion, or human decency. (Get it? Unfortunately, I think only my family is going to get that one. Remember that one Family Home Evening, Andrew?)
Anyway, our Bishop was, in fact, not the intruder. I was. You see, we accidentally locked our car keys and house keys in the apartment.
Before Elders came to the area, we had Sisters in the area. One day, they came home to find that someone had broken into their apartment. Hence the reason they changed it to Elders instead of Sisters. They did not, however, change apartments.
Because of this, we were always very scrupulous about locking all the doors to the apartment. In fact we were more careful about that then remembering to bring our keys with us. Yep. So, I ended up getting a boost from Elder Lee, scaling the side of the building and and clambering around on a short outcropping as I tried to remove the screen in front of our upstairs bedroom window. Well, suffice to say, I found out how the other intruder had gotten in so easily, and had a little bit of an adrenal rush myself in the process.
The whole process was made much funnier due to the fact that one of our neighbor's four year old boy was witnessing the entire process, and I had to keep exhorting and reminding him that he should not try this at home. I kept saying: "This is dangerous. Do not ever do this. Be safe." I also was mentally cautioning him not to tell his mother what he had seen, nor ever give her any inclination to believe that he had seen the missionaries next door do anything sketchy at all.
I think he turned out all right, especially because a few days later, as we were exiting our apartment, he ran up to us and told us: "I've been safe!". I hastily commended him for his wisdom and urged him to keep it up. We have become pretty good friends with that four year old. I quite look forward to seeing him outside. He is way funny, and so is his two year old sister.The moral of this story is: You cannot force someone to feel the Spirit. You cannot convert someone by "breaking and entering" so to speak. They have to open their hearts and accept it of their own free will.
Now, why did I entitle this letter as Forced Entrée, you may ask? Well, here's why: As you have already heard (and perhaps forgotten), my companion is from Korea, and therefore, foreign to some things we have here. A few weeks ago, a member took us out to eat at a restaurant. Elder Lee asked me what Bleu Cheese was, and I cautioned him that it was very strong and he might not like it. He eventually decided to order the item of interest anyway, despite my advice. 
He was given a large slab of chicken on a bun doused in a sauce which was a mixture of bleu cheese and buffalo (the meal was called "Blue Buffalo"). Well, to make a short story even shorter, he did not like it one bit. He did not want to be rude, though, so he just suffered all the way through dinner, and told me how awful it was afterward. The moral of the story is, God has given us prophets to warn us about things, and if we choose not to heed their warnings, we will inevitably suffer the consequences. Listen to the prophets.

Just on another less spiritually applicable note, Elder Lee also had strawberry shortcake for the first time this week. I found him eating the shortcake by itself and commenting on "how good the bread was." (Mary Antoinette, anyone?). Well, I showed him how the strawberries go on the bread, and how it was actually cake. 
I love the mission. Have a great week, tout les monde!

Elder Benge

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