Cute Little Boys From Church Are They

So, after an extremely productive holiday-countdown day at work, I left about 15 minutes early to get a head start on my afternoon nap. Hadn’t been zonked out 15 minutes when the doorbell rang.

Instantly I cursed SkipMagic; what sex toys had he been mail-ordering this time, thereby subjecting me to funny looks from the mail carrier? :wink:

When I opened the door, I thought, "Wow, the Postal Service sure takes 'em young nowadays . . . "

Before me stood a cherubic teenaged boy with a rake (the garden tool kind) in hand. He bore no mail-order sex toys, but instead asked if I’d mind if he and his friends raked some of our leaves. “Or,” he asked hesitantly when I failed to answer immediately, “do you want them there?”

“Uh . . . NO,” I said. "I don’t want them there (and for the last two weekends running, I added in my head, my husband and I have discussed raking them, but never got past the discussion because we’re lazy gits) . . .

" . . . but I don’t have any cash." (The cash part I added aloud.)

“That’s OK,” he smiled and, just as I expected him to whip out a credit card machine, he said, “It’s free–we’re doing it for our church. We’ll bag them for you, and everything.”

“OH!” I said, perhaps a bit too enthusiastically. “Well, then, sure, I’d love for you to rake them!” and headed back to bed.

But I couldn’t sleep. Partially because the dogs were not too keen on having strange boys in our backyard, and so would not stop barking, and partially because I felt this boon in teenage labor was undeserved. I mean, we aren’t elderly or disabled or anything . . . we’re just lazy gits.

I lay there for awhile longer, trying to convince myself that this was my karmic reward for agreeing to participate in an Adopt-A-Family program at work. Or maybe, I pathetically hoped, these are boys who did something bad (like on Halloween!) and this is their penance. Yeah, that must be it! So it’s OK that I’m totally taking advantage of them!

But it didn’t work; I was still awash in guilt. Then I thought of a solution! I went to the kitchen and found styrofoam cups and enough milk and hot chocolate mix for six people (I peeped through the blinds and counted: exactly six of them, but that one kid in the red sweatshirt might not count–he wasn’t close enough for me to tell if he was actually raking or just happened to be walking by and stopped to take a leak or something)! I could repay this debt in some small way!

I opened the back door and called out to ask if they’d like some hot chocolate.

“No thanks,” panted one boy, red-faced from cold and hard work, as he bent over to scoop a giant pile of leaves into a bag. “But thank you, though.”

“I just feel so guilty!” I wailed, completely losing the air of total cool that endears me to teenagers everywhere. “You’re working so hard, and that’s a LOT of leaves!”

“We’re happy to do it,” he panted back.

“Well, OK,” I said, and commenced piling heaps of praise and appreciation on the young lads before turning back inside and telling them to knock if they changed their minds about the hot chocolate.

About 20 minutes later, I did hear a knock on the door.

For hot chocolate? NO. A different red-faced boy was knocking to ask if I wanted him to take the bags full of leaves that Skip and I had raked up a couple of weekends earlier (the garbage collectors wouldn’t take them, so we’d piled them on the back porch until we got it together to dispose of them ourselves) with them as they went!

“You are being TOO GOOD to me!” I cried, explaining (mostly out of guilt) the situation with the garbage collectors.

“No problem,” he smiled, and turned away to do my dirty work.

I love little boys.

But, uh . . . this doesn’t mean I’m going to have to go to church now, does it? :frowning:

Church? Were they LDS?
That would explain refusing the hot chocolate, hot drinks are bad, I made that mistake once myself.
if you DON’T go to church, they put all the leaves back.

Do something nice for somebody else - do your local Familes Helping Families thing for Christmas, volunteer with a library’s homebound services - there’s loads of secular charities you can give to or participate in that will ease your karmic balance. :slight_smile:

Just so you know, I’m pretty sure it’s not hot drinks that are forbidden but caffeine. (Which does tend to coincide with hot drinks, it’s true.)

auntie em, as a former cute liitle boy from church (some might say I still am :">), I think what you did was most likely more than enough thanks. I’d mention something about one good deed deserving another, but it sounds like you have that part covered already. Good for you!

Hmmm…My Church does things like this sometimes. I’m curious if they asked you to come to church what would you have said?

“Hot drinks” is the actual phrase used by the Book of Mormon, but church authorities have clarified that the term refers to “specifically coffee and tea, and to include cold and decaffeinated versions thereof; but not including herbal teas.” The passed quoted immediately above is taken from this page, which later avers that “hot chocolate is okay”. As the comments make clear, however, one Latter-day Saint’s (sweet)meat is another Mormon’s poison.

Just FYI, Mormons love hot chocolate. Coffee and tea, no. Anything with chocolate, yes. (And no, the official reason is not ‘because caffeine is bad’–we make up our own minds on the soda pop question.)

What nice boys!

Did you get the name of the church so you could write a nice thank you note? What good kids!

Most likely I would have felt tricked, especially if they mentioned it after they were done. And it’s not that I mind going to church (that last line of the post was a joke), but I do mind going under coercion.

But they didn’t ask. They just let me know they were leaving, I thanked them profusely (again) . . .

. . . and didn’t think until later to ask them which church, so I was left to comb the phone book long after they’d departed. I think I may have managed to narrow it down.

You could have at least flashed them.

There may be hope for our youth after all…

I agree with Zsofia. Pay it forward.

Almost right - It’s not from the Book of Mormon, but from another book considered scripture by LDS Members named Doctrine & Covenants. BTW - I love hot chocolate (Except for the fatening part).

I stand corrected. You are the LDS expert here!

Perhaps it was just an exercise to teach the kids some humility?

I wonder if the boys’ mission was to provide service without any payment or reward of any kind? Maybe they wanted to do something absolutely for free.

…Now I want some hot chocolate…

Maybe that kid from the other thread can hook up with these boys-at least they got to rake leaves with their clothes on. :wink:

Yup. That makes for good repeat business.

But doing something nice for no reason isn’t exactly so surprising, is it?
Especially during Christmas season. :slight_smile:

I must have missed something interesting… oh well. Another will be along any minute :smiley:

auntie em You must now go out and find the boys and beat them to the next yard full of leaves and rake them yourself! Its the only way to make it all balance. :smiley:
Or, just admire you lovely raked lawn until more leaves show up :rolleyes: You know they will, they always do. even after every one is off every tree. The wind comes up and there they are…

This is about right.

I don’t know if your boys were Mormons or not, but it sounds plausible. In my experience, Mormons as a group are very nice people. If you let them khow, politely, that you are not open to being prostletized, they won’t – and they will still be friendly, welcoming, and helpful.

Mind you, we have a relatively small Mormon population in Vermont. In an area where they are the majority, it might be different.
Years ago, when i was in my early twenties, I went with a group of similarly aged Mormons to a nightclub to listen to the band. At one point, our waitress needed to move some tables around, and set her change tray down on our table. I guess she figured that a dozen twentysomethings drinking soft drinks could be trusted!

I work with a Mormon who drinks Mountain Dew. He’s an interesting guy. For one thing, he’s the only black Mormon I’ve ever known. Also, he didn’t get upset when I asked him if the special underwear comes in a thong version.