Zelophehad’s Daughters

A Mormon Story

Posted by Lynnette

Once upon a time there was an elderly woman who continually checked her mailbox. Every day, she was disappointed that she failed to get any mail (despite the fact that her mailbox was three times as big as the one next to it.) Finally, one day, she got a letter. But alas, the shock of it killed her.

Meanwhile, her granddaughter was struggling with the fact that everyone saw her as ugly. But this all changed when a man offered the unheard-of sum of eight cows for her hand in marriage. She was so happy that she painted a leaf that made it appear that an otherwise barren tree continued to have one leaf, hanging on, which saved the life of a little girl.

Shortly thereafter, this young girl was in an accident. Her brother agreed to donate blood to save her, even though he thought that would cause his death. He was surprised to survive. But he later had a tragic ending, after climbing off a school bus and collapsing in the snow.

This particular school bus was driven by an older woman who had once escorted a group of senior citizens to Temple Square. While they were there, they saw the ghostly figure of an older man dreaming that he was conducting the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. When the woman later went blind, she lamented, “but I’ve been the good one.”

This woman had a nephew who had gone astray, and now spent his time with evil teenagers who, among other things, sang about the dangers of overpopulation. He also failed to wear a life jacket on a rafting activity, causing him to nearly drown. This situation was made even more precarious by the fact that there were crocodiles lurking. Fortunately, he survived. On his flight home, he found himself sitting in front of a General Authority, who was having a heated conversation with Mick Jagger.

This particular plane was packed with a group of youth. These were not ordinary youth; they had been generals in the War in Heaven. One of them had had a near-death experience as a young child, and reported that she had seen a vision of birds in cages. Another had nearly died after compassionately carrying a snake down a mountain, only to be bitten. “You knew what I was when you picked me up,” it admonished. The boy survived by singing “I’ll Build You a Rainbow” until he was rescued.

This boy then went on a journey to find the friend from the premortal life whom he had promised to teach the gospel. He accidentally wandered into the desert. When he was nearly dying of thirst, he encountered a pump. But he ignored the note which instructed him to prime the pump, which ultimately led to his untimely demise.

What would you add to this story?

 

22 Responses to “A Mormon Story”

  1. 1.

    I don’t know what I would add to the story, but I certainly appreciated the laugh tonight.

    Well done!

  2. 2.

    Maybe something about Aaron Eckhart? Perhaps his unfaithful yet painfully honest fiancée, who was president of the Retrenchment Society, bought a new immodest dress and wore it to the big dance, only to be assaulted by a drunken Kirby Heybourn on the way home. Fortunately, shouts of “Hurrah for Israel!” scared him off.

  3. 3.

    “Don’t go drinking any first, just prime the pump.” These words continually haunted my childhood.

    Also, growing up we had a music video compilation called “A Field So White”. The songs/videos are Mormon 90s gold.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oBQ3GkqFjIA&playnext=1&list=PL7FDBBD891BFFB592&feature=results_main

  4. 4.

    This is wonderful, Lynnette!

    I think at some point there should be an old violin that nobody wants to give a dollar for.

  5. 5.

    [Insert before first paragraph]

    Little Nell loved her mother more than tongue could tell. Her mother had been disfigured in a fire and had lost everything except for the necklace she conferred upon the uncomprehending and ungrateful little Nell at her high school graduation. Little Nell didn’t appreciate the necklace, but at least she didn’t have to trudge out to the mailbox day after day in the snow to see if her inheritance had finally arrived.

  6. 6.

    Growing next to the now-useless water pump was a currant bush. It had always wanted to be a huge, rambling currant bush, but the gardener who came by to trim it occasionally always hacked it back into place.

    The gardener also worked as the caretaker of a nearby orphanage, even though he didn’t like kids much. That Christmas, one of the girls got out of her bed before she was allowed, so he took away her Christmas orange. He felt some sympathy for her later, though, when a bunch of crickets came and ate all his crops.

  7. 7.

    I was seated at a banquet table laden with a tempting feast. I was brought a serving platter. On it was a huge delicious cupcake. All the frosting had been licked off, and it was covered in chewed gum. Poking through the bottom of the paper cupcake liner was a cockroach, munching its way out.

    Then, mercifully, I woke up.

  8. 8.

    Moss: my thoughts exactly. This story is definitely missing a hunky RM in the form of Aaron Eckhart.

    I would also be helpful if the story could include the sad tale of a young man who went to a party, drank O’Douls, made out with a girl, and then got to hug his friend goodbye when the friend went on a mission. More O’Douls and kissing for him! Oh, but not before they all went down to the river for a bonfire and took off their armor only to be shot by arrows by the local gang.

  9. 9.

    *It would also be helpful …

  10. 10.

    You need the story about the boy playing on the train tracks whose father, in charge of the switch, has to kill him to avoid killing everyone on the train speeding toward the switch. Or something like that.

    And the MP holder who insisted on changing into a white shirt, tie and buisiness suit before ever giving a blessing. While he was changing, the person who requested the blessing died. But at least she wasn’t blessed by a MP holder who failed to respect his priesthood enough to change intio his 1950s IBM executive outfit first, so it was worth dying over.

  11. 11.

    Oh yeah, how about the man whose teen failed to fill the car with gas on Saturday night, so he got up early to walk to church? He could be hit by various vehicles on his way and/or need a blessing and/or get thirsty in the desert and/or spend eight cows on an extra wife.

  12. 12.

    .

    Reminds me of this time I was throwing starfish in the ocean. Turned my back and was sucked out in a riptide. True story.

  13. 13.

    Genius as usual, Lynnette. Pure comic gold.

    Bea #3 – yes! “Prime the pump” scared the H-E-double-hockeysticks out of me in seminary. And escc – “Oh, but not before they all went down to the river for a bonfire and took off their armor only to be shot by arrows by the local gang.” There seem to be a lot of rivers, crocodiles, safety-vest eschewing young men and arrows in these.

  14. 14.

    I had an institute teacher show our class “The Pump” and then ask us, in all seriousness, how we could relate this fable to oh, say, marriage? The class went crazy, laughing and making jokes about “priming the pump”. Best. Institute. Class. Ever.

  15. 15.

    such a shame, getting a civil marriage only to die on the way to the temple that afternoon!

  16. 16.

    So then the hitchhiker told them “Get your food storage in order” and he disappeared from the backseat. In his place was a copy of Thomas S. Monson’s patriarchal blessing, and it said that we should each buy two pairs of boots because we would wear the first pair out while walking back to Missouri, trowels held high over our heads, singing the songs of Zion the entire way.

    But then when they got to Missouri, they found the zombified remains of one of the men who killed Joseph Smith, still crawling along the wall and wishing for death but unable to find it.

    So then Elder Colby baptised all fifteen thousand of them right then and there, and because he worked so hard on his mission, his wife was the hottest one ever. But his companion only baptised one little boy who didn’t have the sense to wear shoes, and that little boy turned out to be one of the apostles who would lie dead on the streets of Jerusalem for three days just before the final apocalypse.

    And that’s why the Salt Lake City Temple is built on big granite rollers, so it can just roll back and forth during the earthquakes of the last days, and then they can tow it to Jackson County. (Seriously, I had an entire Targeteer lesson on the rollers, complete with chalkboard drawings.)

  17. 17.

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  18. 18.

    Then a Jimmy Stewart showed up to wish all the kids a Merry Christmas!

  19. 19.

    Perhaps you could include the teenage boy working at the drive-in restaurant who really needed to make an important phone call (heavy on the bassoon for the sound track). Luckily, before the last leaf fell some guy came along and painted one on the wall so all the sick kids didn’t have to die and the teen boy finally made that important call and his co-worker decided to dump her boyfriend who treated her so poorly. Just when everything was about to go in the direction of happily ever after, the profligate younger brother appears in some nice 80’s ugly sweater and charms all the cash out of dad by crooning and playing the piano so nicely.

  20. 20.

    Also, is someone knitting with their feet in this story? And where’s Marvin Payne?

  21. 21.

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