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Hookers & Religion

I was Mormon once, and now I’m not. But for that brief time that I was, my parents forced me to attend Primary. I hated it. Everything single thing about it, but mostly I dreaded sitting in those ugly, orange plastic chairs. They didn’t match my pink dress, and at six I was very into things matching. But my OCD inspired neurosis isn’t the topic of this post. Hookers are. No really, they are.

My primary teacher was obsessed with talking about what kids wanted to be when they grew up. She liked filling our heads with silly things like a future career as an Avon lady, or better yet a mother, which I guess is an acceptable career for me with the right amount of prescription drugs and wine.

I didn’t want to be an Avon lady when I grew up. In fact, I was terrified of the woman who came to our house trying to peddle makeup to my mother. She smelled bad, like 18 kinds of perfume and peppermint gum. To this day the smell of peppermint gum makes me want to curl up into a fetal position and cry.

I sat and listened to each kid explain what they wanted to be when they grew up and why. “I want to be a doctor because I like to help people.” “I want to be a fireman because I like red trucks.”

When it was my turn I looked at the teacher, smiled and said, “I want to be a prostitute when I grow up because they get lots of presents and play with boys all day long.”

My teacher gasped. I didn’t know what I had done wrong. I was six and certainly didn’t know what a prostitute actually was. To this day my parents can’t explain where I came up with such an idea. Although one can’t help but suspect one my four uncles was somehow responsible for this knowledge. Kudus to whichever one it was.

And while I didn’t grow up to be a prostitute, I still adore receiving presents, and would much rather spend my day among a group of men than women.


  • I remember you telling me that story before, you were a smart little girl.

  • I thought the only presents prostitutes got were of the STD brand.

  • ah well i just wanted to be me and to make words sing. or to write lyrics to a song and have them sung! one out of two isnt bad!

  • I’m not sure what makes you feel the need to share these thoughts with the world, but I admire it. There is something beautiful to be said for honesty.

  • Hey – just found your site via Dooce and I’m thoroughly enjoying reading some of your past posts. This one made me laugh so loud I scared my cubemate. Thanks!

  • This is hilarious! I would have loved to see the teachers face!!!

  • Absolutely AWESOME!!!

    I remember sitting in a room very similar to that (only I was in my teens and it was Young Women’s instead of Primary) and was asked the same question. Most of the girls in the room responded with the pre-programmed answer of “mother” or “teacher”. My answer was “I intend to have a good job and make money. IF I have children, my husband can stay home with them”.

    You would have thought I had stripped down and streaked through the church house from the reaction I received. One of my favorite church memories….

  • In Sunbeams,when asked if I wanted to go on a mission,my reply was “NO,I’m going to stay home with all the boys that have come BACK from their missions” Already at bit promiscuous at 4.

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