22 December 2010

Tabernacle Fire - The Painting That Lived

Amidst the hub-bub of this painting that partially survived the fire in the Provo Tabernacle, I have one request: Show me pictures of everything else that wasn't completely burned.

I think we'll find that there a lot of things that only received partial damage from the flames. It's nuts to think this is some sort of sign from God. Seriously, how many of you Mormons out there believe those crazy Catholics when they see an apparition of Jesus in a tortilla or piece of toast? Yeah, that's how crazy you sound talking about the painting.

21 December 2010

Be Careful Who You De-friend

Periodically I go through a "friend" purge on Facebook. There are no absolute rules to whom I de-friend, but generally if I just don't care for the person anymore I will delete them.

I still have a ton of friends from the days when I was an active Mormon. Many have deleted me, and I have deleted some obnoxious ones in return. But, there are always those who I debate on deleting when I'm doing a purge. I usually think something like this to myself, "Self, this person hasn't really done anything to be a jerk, and you never know, they might need to hear what you have to say about gay people so that they'll change their attitude."

As it turns out, that voice in my head is prophetic. Maybe I should start my own religion ... but I digress.

I received an email the other day from a guy that was in one of my wards about 9 years ago. I haven't seen him in probably 8 years, and after he added me on Facebook I never did have a conversation with him - until last week.

He emailed me to tell me to ask my opinion on how LDS parents should treat their out-of-the-closet children. No, he didn't have one of his kids come out. Rather, he is a religion teacher at the so-called "Lord's" university. One of his students sent him an email detailing how the student's twin sister is out of the closet. The student loves his sister unconditionally and is totally fine with whatever choices she makes for her life. Their parents, on the other hand, or not so hip on it. They have forbidden her from bringing her girlfriend to family functions and basically are just being douchebags about the whole thing.

We traded a few emails back and forth about it. Apparently the mother insists that she is the reason her daughter is gay; there is something she should and could have done so that the daughter wouldn't have turned out that way. I commented on how egotistical of a statement that is for a parent to make. I then talked about how there is legitimate science that backs up a huge biological factor in why people turn out gay and how based on my own experiences and research I am convinced that my own homosexuality is 100% biological. I then made the comment that the only way the mother actually could have done anything about it would have been to have had an abortion so that the daughter didn't exist.

I then talked about all the junk science out there that people use to refute any biology, and push archaic ideas of it being a mental disorder and changeable.

Here's where I was stunned. He responded and wrote the following:

I'll admit that in the past I was one of those that clung to the junk science, but my views have definitely shifted the past couple of years. I was very appreciative of the notes you posted on Facebook about you own experiences; they were frank and handled with aplomb, and they directly helped to shape some of my current views.

Wow! Something that I did actually changed a pretty hard-core Mormon's point of view on us gay folk. It felt really good to know that I was a part of that, but more importantly that it can be done.

So, be careful who you de-friend. You might miss a great teaching opportunity.

05 October 2010

AIDS Walk 2010

It's time again for the AIDS Walk here in Los Angeles. It's in a week and a half, and I'm still looking for donations. If you have some money you can spare, please find it in your heart to click on the link below and donate to me and my team. Every little bit helps. Thanks!

Click Here to Donate

21 September 2010


I just had to repost this one for everyone to see.

The Oatmeal: Literally

How are you doing? We haven't chatted in a while.

10 August 2010


So, I was talking to my mom on the phone while I was driving home yesterday (using my legal, hands-free device of course) and she said something that I never thought I would hear her say. Ever. Not in a million years. I was shocked. I was stunned. I almost had to pull over and stop the car.

She said, "Well, I think that you and Derrick should get married now that it's legal. If you guys are planning on spending the rest of your lives together, you need your legal protections."

I never thought I would ever hear her dissent from the popular voice of "the church." I almost cried a little.

Life is very good today. It's been a long road, and we've come a long way.


22 June 2010

My Fireside Prediction

My cynical (but accurate) prediction of the Idaho "SSA-themed" fireside that's happening next weekend:

A whole bunch of gay Mormons are going to meet a whole bunch of other gay Mormons and within a couple of weeks 75% of them will be confessing in the bishop's office because they hooked up with someone from the conference.

05 May 2010

The Love of God

As someone who has emerged from the tunnel with shattered faith, I sometimes think about if God really does exist. Part of me wants to be realistic and just accept the fact that he probably doesn't, given the evidence of the chaos and catastrophe inflicted upon mankind because of (and in the name of) religion. On the other hand, I've always been "in tune" with a spiritual part of myself, and still am. That part really wants to believe in an afterlife. I love D more than anything, and I don't want it to just be until we die.

So, my agnosticism prevails. I'm not completely persuaded one way or the other.

One thing that does persuade me toward the realistic view is some of the lame statements from people with respect to the love of God. I say that with reference to Scott's blog, and his seemingly impending split from Sarah. The things that the self-righteous religious folk comment on there just makes me fume. Other comments just make me roll my eyes at the absurdity.

One of the recent comments that I found absurd was "God loves you and is mindful of this entire situation." Really? If God is mindful of the situation, then why doesn't God do anything about it? Why did he encourage them to get married in the first place, knowing that it would end up in a tremendous amount of pain for everyone involved? Why send children into a family that he knew wouldn't be able to stay together? Honestly, it seems more like God's cruel joke than him being loving and mindful.

02 April 2010

Three Months Later

Has it really been three months since I last wrote? It's true, once the angst was out of me I lost my muse. Although, from a personal sanity perspective, that's not a bad thing to lose. :) So, here are some random thoughts.

Where am I at right now in my life? I am happy. I love the person I am with. We're like an old married couple now. We've lived together for 1.5 years now (wow!). The honeymoon is over and now we're just living our lives. We have plans for the future (that are totally flexible, depending on what random opportunities come our way). We have great friends here in So Cal (and other places too). We have a lot of great things going for us.

I wouldn't say that we live in bliss. We just live like a normal, loving couple. He does have some personality quirks that get on my nerves occasionally (and I know that I have some that bug him as well), but show me one couple in the world where that isn't the case. The best part of being committed to each other is being able to get over the little annoyances of life and still have the person you love lying next to you at the end of the day.

Here's something that may be interesting to a few of you. I think that our relationship is very different than a classical one. It's kind of a touchy issue to address, and I'm sure there are gay MoHo couples out there who would disagree with our perspective: We are both completely okay with the other person looking at, making comments about, and even touching other hot boys. It's kind of a game to see who can spot the hottest guy at the beach, or at the bar, or wherever we find ourselves. We are realistic. We're both men, and we're both gay - we're always going to want to look. And gay men also seem to have the propensity to look more than straight men do anyway.

Ours is not like some lame hetero relationship where the guy looks for half a second too long at some passerby and his wife gets all up in arms about it. We aren't jealous like that. We don't feel threatened by it. We both know who it is we love and want to go home with. And you know what? It works.

The other day we saw this guy with the most amazing abs ever and I commented, "Wow, I wish I had abs like that!" D's response was, "I wouldn't complain if you had abs like that." It was funny. It wasn't offensive. We like our relationship being like that. It takes a lot of pressure off.

Anyway, those are my random thoughts for now. Maybe I'll think of something else to write before another three months pass...


04 January 2010

A Goal, Not a Resolution

This year I decided to improve my sub-par photographic skills. So, I'm reading more. Looking at and analyzing professional pictures more. And, most importantly, taking more pictures. As a matter of fact, my goal is to do a 365 day photo blog this year. I'm posting one photo each day that I have taken during that day. The first few days were easy (especially since I was on vacation and had plenty of time to find photo opportunities). It will be very challenging on normal work days to come up with a photograph that evening. Yikes! I'm already freaking out.

If you care to take a look at it and follow it during the year, the URL is:

I think that the first three days of the photo blog are not representative of my skills - they were lucky shots and far cooler than what I'm usually capable of. :)

Oh, and this confirms my identity to anyone who has wondered. I don't really feel much need for anonymity anymore. Although, I may still refer to myself as Max Power and my partner as D, just to keep the consistency here in my blog.

Cheers in the new year!