Thursday, October 18, 2018

Me When I Was Bad

This is my niece, Kate.


Adorable, right? Doesn't she just look like someone you would trust with your life? So sweet and sincere.

Be ye not fooled.

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Skylar Has Opinions

Be sure to check out this beautiful story from Shireen if you haven't already!



*****

Skylar has opinions about things and sometimes this is the worst.

I don't mean that his opinions are the worst. Sometimes they are. But that's not what I meant by the first sentence.

What I meant by the first sentence is that it is sometimes the worst that he has opinions in the first place.

Last week we got our by-mail ballots for the midterm elections. We sat around the kitchen table filling these out, quite thoughtfully, I would like to add. Probably more than any election, we studied the issues thoroughly, like we were preparing to take a test.

But then we got to one proposed constitutional amendment on our ballots and Skylar was not familiar with it so he asked me if I knew what it was all about.

"Just vote yes," I told him, without further explanation.

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Born To Run


A few months ago I was invited to a meet and greet for this woman named Shireen Ghorbani who is running for Congress in my district right now (Utah Second District). I went because I'm totes hashtag woke.

Truthfully, I mainly went because I had been feeling guilty for a while for not being informed enough about local politics, and I thought it wouldn't kill me to spend an hour to go and hear what someone who could end up being my representative thinks about cats and Snuggies.

I'm probably like most people in being very fatigued with politics and all of the anger. That's not to say that I ignore politics or that I sometimes don't feel anger about it. I do. Check out my Twitter. Hashtag woke.

But I am tired of it. And although I have received anger emails to the Stranger account accusing me of being "a conservative mindless sheep" and "a communist libtard," and on one occasion on the same day, it might surprise you to learn that I don't consider myself conservative or liberal.

I've registered at various times for both major parties, usually so I can vote in a primary election that I feel somewhat strongly about. But I've never felt loyal to either, and I refuse to buy into the notion that any political party has the market cornered on good or bad people and ideas.

Thursday, October 11, 2018

National Coming Out Day

I was 21, sitting in a parked car with a friend who was several years older than me. I looked up to her greatly. She was an important friend--one that I trusted.

It was 2005. The friend was asking me about dating at BYU, where I had just started school. I told her about some of my experiences, including that I didn't really like dating all that much and found it sort of stressful. I told her there was a young woman who was a close friend of mine and whom my friends couldn't believe I didn't want to date. She was impressive in all of the ways that 21-year-olds at BYU find young women impressive.

But I didn't want to date her. I told the friend this, sitting in the parked car.

She said it sort of in jest. The statement wasn't a joke, but her delivery was in the spirit of teasing to some degree.

"Well I just hope you're not gay. I don't have the energy to try to talk you out of that right now."

My heart sunk so low that the nearly permanent sunken state it was already in seemed healthy in comparison.

I responded in the same tone in which she had spoken, denying "of course" the suggestion. I brushed it off as casually as I could, fiddling with a cupholder, suddenly very aware that I was doing it and wondering if it was normal to fiddle with a cupholder. It was raining now, and getting sort of late.

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

I'm A Bad Person

My older sister and brother-in-law ditched town and their responsibilities for a little vacation and my siblings and parents were put on a babysitting rotation for their four kids.

Mine and Skylar's turn came last weekend. Friday evening to Sunday evening, to be exact.

Look. I don't have natural parenting abilities. I'm incapable of talking to children. I don't know what to say. I address 5-year-olds like they are middle-aged insurance defense attorneys. Every exchange is a legal transaction. When my 11-year-old nephew tried to haggle on bedtime last Friday,

Nephew: What if I just stay up for 30 more minutes?

Eli: You'll go to bed now.

Nephew: But what if I promise to clean my room tomorrow?

Eli: You'll go to bed now and you'll clean your bedroom tomorrow.

Nephew: This isn't fair!

Eli: I don't speak whine.

Nephew: But it's not fair!

Eli: Unless you have something of value to offer me, this negotiation is a waste of my time.

HE'S 11. I'M A MONSTER.

Saturday, October 6, 2018

Roommates

Hey look! I told a story at Strangerville Live! Check out the recording and the written version below:

This time in Strangerville, Meg and Eli talk about a heavy-handed movie. Also, Eli takes the Strangerville Live stage to share a story about his worst roommate, ever.
Story
Roommates, by Eli McCann
Production by Eli McCann & Preg Walter

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Rock, Paper, Scissors, SHOOT

I'm aware that Rock, Paper, Scissors is hardly more than a game of chance. I know this. I'm not under the impression that a person benefits from experience in this or that it's possible to be particularly skilled at the game.

Rock, Paper, Scissors is basically as complex and random as a coin toss.

Maybe a super genius has figured out a way to read an opponent's mind. But I doubt it.

It's a game of chance.

I know this.

The only way to effectively use strategy to win the game is to cheat, by adding new rules. Like Jared Dimick did to me in the second grade when he introduced "bomb," which looked like the rock, but with the thumb extended, and which "beats everything."

And I accepted this. And lost Rock, Paper, Scissors against Jared Dimick every time we played. For a year.

Yeah, I could have used bomb against him, but I was a RPS purist, enough so that I was willing to lose for my beliefs.