My Coming Out Party

On Tuesday, one of my former Seminary students came by for lunch prior to leaving for BYU. Sariah was one of my favorites in the class because 1) she was always early and believe me, 6 a.m. was early enough and 2) she never missed a day. I wish I could say the same for myself.

Oh, and she did not sleep or stare at me like I was recently transplanted from another planet. Hmmm…perhaps that is why they call us illegal aliens.

During our visit, she added to my list of reasons of why she was among my favorite students: she actually listened in class. And remembered. I was shocked as she relayed experiences I had shared a few years back. Ones I had safely locked away in my vault called Oh, the Insanity. And so thank you, Sariah for reopening that….

It was my junior year at BYU. Well, my first of three junior years if you’re really counting. I had just been accepted into the broadcast journalism program and had the illustrious job of Grunt around KBYU’s newsroom.

I worked the teleprompter and did important jobs such as inform the snotty anchor if she had lipstick on her teeth. Because most anchors are snotty, with the exception of Jed Boal and Ron Burgundy. The first of whom I actually dated; the second I only wish I had.

One day, the newscast got preempted. To kill time, one of the cameramen asked Tony (a fellow Grunt) and I if we wanted a lesson. Tony started behind the camera and I trotted over to the news desk, intending to give the best fake newscast imaginable.

I’m not sure when things started getting out of hand. Was it when I did my muscle poses at the weather board? Or when the cameraman taught Tony how to frame a shot by zooming in and out on my chest as I hammed it up by shaking ‘em like I was in a mariachi band?

I was in the midst of my finale when a voice screeched out from the control room. A voice that still resonates today:


Turns out, the newscast had not been preempted after all and had gone live at the top of the hour. For fifteen long minutes, my muscles and cha chas were splayed across the airwaves for all 14 ultra-conservative KBYU viewers to see.

My face heats up just thinking about it but my debut was undoubtedly legendary. After all, it was probably the only program to ever receive a PG-13 rating on that station. Or maybe more like an ‘R’…..

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