It seems that for every conceivable social malady, there is an equal and opposite makeover show. Is your friend a hopeless frump? Just send in the Fab Five from Queer Eye, and watch the ugly duckling turn into a metrosexual swan on national television. Or perhaps call for the What Not to Wear people, so you can laugh as your friend is mocked on TV by the fashionable and cruel. Is your friend’s home decor hopelessly stuck in the
seventies eighties nineties? Call for the Trading Spaces crew, and you’ll get to fix up your friend’s living room with a group of preternaturally photogenic handymen and -women (while hoping that your friend isn’t doing too much damage to your own house). For less risk to your own digs, try the While You Were Out crew. And of course, let’s not forget the ultimate makeover show, the surprisingly titled Extreme Makeover.
What makeover shows do we need for Mormons?
Trading Scriptures. You all know the slob in your Elder’s Quorum who has never cracked open his quad. He doesn’t know Nephi from Moroni, and he clearly doesn’t care. Or maybe he does care, he’s just embarrassed about his scriptures. He probably feels so inadequate — his quad is the only one in the room that lacks a soft red highlighting in First Nephi 3:7. It’s like a sign on his head — “I didn’t do the scripture masteries in seminary. Make fun of me.”
Our Trading Scriptures crew has the answer. We will kidnap his quad and send it for a quick but thorough makeover, to a team comprised of Royal Skousen, Jack Welch, Jim Faulconer, Melissa Proctor, and Henry B. Eyring. Plus the mandatory art support — Rusty Clifton and a crew of day-laborer artists, armed with a 156-color box of colored pencils.
In just 24 hours, your friend’s scriptures will be back, now with color-coded cross-references on every page and deep scriptural thoughts in every margin. Linguistic notes will be added in cool colors, with copious use of phrases like “in the original Greek, this term could also mean . . .” Blank pages will be decorated with cute pictures of Ammon chopping off arms. And to top it off, the marginal notes will include pithy, occasionally humorous cross-references to Nibley, Shakespeare, C.S. Lewis, Jorge Luis Borges, Aquinas, Augustine, and Ogden Nash.
While You were in Relief Society. So you’re a new convert, and you haven’t quite got the Mormon-woman look down? Unable to tell the difference between Gap and Old Navy? Never fear — the WYWIRS crew is here to help!
Rosalynde Welch, Carrie Lundell, Sumer Evans, Heather Oman, and the marketing arm of Gap/Old Navy will take you shopping for a day, and educate you in the nuances of Mormon-woman dress. You’ll learn tricks and truisms like:
-“No success in the cut can compensate for failure in the highlighting” — a theory of Mormon coiffure.
-The divide between church t-shirts and non-church t-shirts.
-No, you can’t have a pixie cut. Now just put your hair in a ponytail like everyone else, dear. There, now doesn’t that look nice? Remember that Mormon men are genetically programmed to find ponytails sexy.
-Make-up tips for the very white.
By the end of the day, you’ll be indistinguishable from all of the rest of the
Stepford wives Relief Society sisters in your ward. Welcome to Mormon life, sister!
Extreme Hometeaching. It looks like you haven’t done your home teaching for a little while, brother Jones. The past thirty-two months, to be exact.
It’s time for an intervention by Extreme Hometeaching. You’ve been assigned a new companion, brother Jones. You are now the junior companion to Boyd K. Packer.
You don’t want to get a stern talking-to from an apostle? Then I hope that you have your appointments set for this month. And get that done on the 1st, not the 31st.
And brother Jones, I really, really hope that you don’t think that skimming the Ensign message in the car on the way to the appointment counts as preparing your message. Your new senior companion might have a few things to say to you on that score.
You should be smiling, brother Jones. Your Elders quorum president is.