Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Sending the Wrong Message

On my recent trip, I decided I needed to get hot chocolate at a convenience store.  I'm not really sure why, it is August, after all, but this girl gets what she wants . . . if it costs less than 99 cents.  (You can call me a diva if you want--I'm totally used to it.)  

Back to the cocoa.  I got to the checkout and placed the Styrofoam cup on the counter.  The cup was covered with images of steaming coffee mugs, coffee beans and words like Coffee.

Before I go on, you need to understand that I am bound by a religious covenant to not drink coffee.  It is a kind of physical reminder of spiritual commitments I've made.  Similar to the Jews' choice to avoid pork, or the Seventh Day Adventists' vegetarian diet.

"Just the coffee?" the checker asks.

Not wanting to complicate a simple transaction with, No, actually, it's just hot cocoa.  But, yes, just this, thank you, I replied with a shrug and an "Um, yeah."

I knew it was just cocoa, but he didn't.  He doesn't know me, he'll likely never see me again and wouldn't remember me if he did; I was just one more in a line on the day of a very busy gas station.  But I felt ashamed for holding that cup, for letting him believe that a good Mormon girl was drinking coffee on her vacation (something I would never do).  I felt like I was a disappointment.

Yesterday, I had to take my wedding ring in because one of the prongs had become loose around the diamond.  After nearly thirteen years of always wearing it, my left ring finger is a little thinner and bears a distinctive tan line.  I am feeling a bit like I did when I walked out the glass door holding the steaming cup of what looked like coffee:  False.

I don't really have a point, though I guess I would just say that if you see me with a cup of coffee or a thick tan line where my wedding band should be, don't let your mind wander.  It's not how it looks.


  1. I once got a really bad sty on my eye when we lived in Utah. The doctor said to get regular old Lipton tea bags and steep one for a minute and put the hot tea bag on my eye (the acids in the tea along with the heat help dislodge the center of the sty. Umm, sorry. I guess that was kind of gross and unnecessary). ANYWAY, I was at the grocery store buying my tea bags and my relief society president was in line behind me and I worried all week that the bishop was going to call me in to revoke my temple recommend.

  2. If you were wearing a padded bra as well then I'm really disappointed. Coffee, no wedding ring, padded bras. Shame on you.

    If it makes you feel better I had to dye a sheet the other day- I bought coffee grounds to get the effect I wanted. I was worried someone I knew would see me.