Introducing, Me

April 22, 2010 | 22 comments
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We T&S bloggers are pretty impersonal. Our posts tell about the kinds of things we think about, but we don’t share much about who we are or what we do. So here’s a bit about me.

I spent the first 18 years of my life in California — 9 in Pleasanton and 9 in Cameron Park. Now I’m 30 and, after a decade in Utah and Oregon + 2 years in Japan (Kobe mission), I’m back in California again. I’m kind of a geek. I like board games, and I play Magic (not tricks, just the CCG). I used to play Dungeons & Dragons, and probably still would except that it takes lots of time and committed players.

My angel mother made sure my siblings and I (two brothers, one sister) were engaged in productive extracurricular activities — sports, dance, music, etc. I never did much with the sports, but I still love to play the piano and write music. I ran a couple of dance studios until we had our second child, which prompted me to get a 9-to-5 job as a computer programmer (I studied modern dance and computer science at BYU).

I discovered the bloggernacle four years ago. At the time, it seemed a bit dangerous to me. I would read Times & Seasons occasionally, but thought that By Common Consent was dangerously irreverent. I had been taught to beware anything that might create questions about faith and the church. Fortunately, I had also read History of the Church, which presented enough curious tidbits to make me want to find some answers. Eventually my fear of apostatizing lost out to my desire for understanding, and here I am.

I love the distinctive doctrines of the church. I recall a sacrament meeting I attended a while back. Listening to the unremarkable talks got me to thinking, “If I knew nothing about this church other than what I’m hearing today, I wouldn’t see any reason to join it.” It was a frightening thought, and caused me to ask, why is the church important to me? The anchor I was able to fix on is the empowering doctrines of the Restoration — the nature of God, man, life, and eternity — that I find so wondrous, and so unique to our faith.

My theme in life (and as a blogger, for those of you who haven’t been keeping up with me!) is building community. That’s what I’m about. I love lots of things, but mostly I love sharing time with friends and family.

It’s hard to present oneself in a few paragraphs. I’d enjoy listing more of my favorite music (Fever Ray), games (Puerto Rico), and choreographers (Michael Hoover), but mostly I want to end on this note: thank you all who make this community alive. Thank you who lurk, for lurking lurkfully. Thank you who comment, for commenting boldly. And thank you who blog, for blogging incessantly, sincerely, and fatefully.

22 Responses to Introducing, Me

  1. Bill of Wasilla on April 23, 2010 at 12:13 am

    Ah, the internal struggle that wages within us all. These days, the only time I go into a Mormon chapel is when I am burying a loved one, but the church is always there in me, one way or another, just the same. I blog, too, and I haven’t got into it, but sometimes I dance on the edge, today, perhaps, more than ever. One day, I have to tell my own Mormon story. I cannot do it either by acquiescence or attack, I just have to tell it honest, as it appears to have unfolded to me.

    It ain’t gonna be easy.

  2. Bill of Wasilla on April 23, 2010 at 12:13 am

    PS: Thanks for sharing this.

  3. Dave on April 23, 2010 at 12:31 am

    … and they revel in their dangerous irreverence. The latest example:

    http://bycommonconsent.com/2010/04/22/police-beat-roundtable-xxi/

  4. Dane Laverty on April 23, 2010 at 12:38 am

    Bill, I hope you do.

    Dave, well yeah, some people are just incorrigible ;)

  5. Steve Evans on April 23, 2010 at 12:46 am

    I am dangerously irreverent at church, too. One time I TOTALLY took the sacrament with my left hand!

  6. Aaron Brown on April 23, 2010 at 12:55 am

    I sometimes attend church without underwear on. Very irreverent, but no one knows, which makes it relatively undangerous, yet diabolically secretive.

  7. Steve Evans on April 23, 2010 at 1:39 am

    and disgusting.

  8. meems on April 23, 2010 at 2:46 am

    :-(

  9. Dan on April 23, 2010 at 5:26 am

    I wear Tevas to church.

  10. Tracy M on April 23, 2010 at 5:53 am

    And I sometimes scrap the manual and teach on the fly! Veeeeery DANgerous! ;)

  11. WMP on April 23, 2010 at 7:54 am

    Wait, you said you studied modern dance AND computer science? That is perhaps the most intriguing combination of disciplines I’ve ever contemplated.

  12. Julie M. Smith on April 23, 2010 at 8:25 am

    WMP beat me to the punch, but “I studied modern dance and computer science” may be the most interesting sentence ever.

  13. Ardis E. Parshall on April 23, 2010 at 9:14 am

    Echoing WMP and Julie, but thinking back over your posts I’m not completely surprised. Your interest in community combines the heart to envision better ways of living with the head to think through the practicalities.

  14. Dane Laverty on April 23, 2010 at 9:18 am

    To Steve and the rest of the BCC crowd, don’t worry, I don’t fear for your souls anymore (well, except for Aaron’s soul now :shudder:).

    WMP, Julie, and Ardis, you’d be surprised how much of crossover there is between BYU’s computer and dance departments. I suppose that the hours spent in front of computer monitors ignites the desire to go do something active, although usually it’s ballroom dance (I was the anomaly in modern dance). Then again, I think almost every BYU student takes a social dance class or two, so maybe it’s not that remarkable.

  15. Adam Greenwood on April 23, 2010 at 11:53 am

    Puerto Rico is a good little game.

  16. Mark B. on April 23, 2010 at 12:10 pm

    Just a shout out to the ???????!

  17. Mark B. on April 23, 2010 at 12:10 pm

    Blast it–your site doesn’t read or write Japanese.

  18. Edje Jeter on April 23, 2010 at 12:54 pm

    Hi. Thanks for sharing.

  19. Dustin on April 23, 2010 at 4:19 pm

    Back in California? I wonder if we’ve met, I live in Cameron Park now and I’ve lived in the area for a long while. If you’re around, maybe we should play Magic sometime. LoL

    I didn’t expect to see the words “Cameron Park” come in on my Bloggernacle RSS feeds.

  20. Scott B. on April 24, 2010 at 1:44 pm

    Thanks for sharing, Dane. I think this kind of navel-gazing is important for building community between among and between teh blogs.

  21. JC on April 28, 2010 at 6:16 pm

    I prefer lurking. One of my few guilty pleasures. The return from piano lessons greatly outweighs the loss from karate lessons.

    Love,
    Your angel mother

  22. Dane Laverty on April 29, 2010 at 9:55 am

    Thanks mom :)