Wednesday, October 9, 2013

A Letter to Eli McCann, With Whom I am Not Obsessed

One of my favorite blogs to follow is "It Just Gets Stranger" which is written by a local Mormon lawyer, Eli McCann. This is coincidence. I didn't know he was a Utahn, a Mormon or a lawyer when I first started reading it. I came for the Snuggies and stayed for The Queen of Colors. He is hilarious. After you've read for a while, you start to feel like you're in a club-- you get all the inside jokes, you know who Leotrix is. You watch for comments by the Anonymous that might be Jolyn... Eli is funny basically every day, too.

But I'm not obsessed, I swear.

Last Friday, my three youngest kids and I drove into downtown Salt Lake City to deliver some donations to the children's hospital in town. Ben had collected them doing his Eagle Scout project, and it was time to get them OUT of my family room. On the way home, I drove through Salt Lake and at one point was stopped facing North at a stoplight, waiting to turn. Directly in front of us, the road ends in an older brick apartment building with white metal rails on the balconies. I looked up at it and then we had this conversation:

Me- Hey! Isn't that Eli's building? I think that's where Eli lives! Everyone wave!
Ben- Who?
Me- Eli McCann from It Just Gets Stranger. He posted a picture of his new roommate, Kurt, scaling the outside of their building in Salt Lake-- I swear it looks just like this one!
Adam- Oh. I haven't read that in a while.
Me- Yeah, he moved back to the States and is living just a block from the temple (or so he says) in the city. I don't know; maybe this isn't the building. Don't wave.
Ben- That would be cool.
Katie- Mom, when we get home can I read Yahoo Answers?
Me- Yeah. Wait-- I don't think this is it. See those two old ladies coming out? Maybe this is a retirement building or something. You guys need to catch up-- his stuff about Kurt has been funny.

We went home. 

On Monday, Adam sat on the couch giggling while reading "Stranger" on his laptop. 

On Tuesday, Adam and I had this conversation:
Adam- Mom, I emailed Eli and he emailed me back.
Me- Who?
Adam- Eli McCann. He emailed me back- he's nice.
Me- Yeah, I've emailed him before to send him funny things for his Friday distractions. What did you send him?
Adam- Just a note.

Me- Wait- you didn't send him any funny websites or anything? You just... emailed him? Like a fan letter?
Adam- Yeah. Oh, and that was totally his building. So, I told him you're obsessed with him. He said 'I'm obsessed with your mom, even though I don't know who she is'. 

Me- WHAT?? You said I'm obsessed? I'm not obsessed, I just read his blog. 
Adam- I told him we quote his blog all the time and that basically he writes about our life because we have cats and chickens. He's really cool.
Me- Wait-- I'm concerned about this word "obsessed". I'm not obsessed with Eli. And we don't quote him "all the time". (Yes, I did use air quotes both times)
Adam- It doesn't matter. I just think he's cool.
Me- Well, it matters to me. I don't want people thinking I'm some crazy middle-aged fangirl.
Adam- (rolls eyes and walks away) It's not a big deal, Mom.
Me- YES IT IS!! I'M NOT OBSESSED!! You can't just throw words like that around! Now he'll think I'm a crazy stalker or something!
Adam- No he won't- relax, Mom.
Me- YOU RELAX! Crap. Now what do I do??

At this point Adam was done with the whole snowball he had started, so he walked away. Wouldn't it be nice to just walk away from a disaster you created!?!??!

Now I feel compelled to make sure Eli knows I'm not obsessed with him or his blog. (Or Kurt). But how do you say "I'm not obsessed" without sounding like "I'm obsessed but don't want you to know it"??

Dear Eli-My son emailed you and said I am obsessed with you. I'm not. Rest assured. I read your blog every day and sometimes quote you (twice up the barrel and once down the side, man!) and I know where you live and I wish Cathie was MY mom, but

I'm making it worse, aren't I.

Okay, let me try again.

Dear Eli-
My son emailed you and thought it was funny to tell you that I'm obsessed with you. That's embarrassing! I'm not obsessed, just a reader of your blog. Sometimes I comment, but not as Anonymous-- I think that's creepy. I don't even think about you very often-- no more than I think about the other bloggers I follow. WHICH ISN'T OFTEN. Though I did think the other day how funny it would be if you did a tour of homes of your local readers who own cats and took a series of photographs of you holding said cats at each house. I have three now. I'm dying of cats.

I promise my cats don't have Ringworm.Sincerely-

Still not better. One more time-

Dear Eli-I'm not obsessed with you. My son is just silly. Really, I'm not. I AM obsessed with chocolate, ha ha. And I like blogging. And we have 5 chickens in our backyard, that I'm ready to have in the freezer. I'm too busy to be obsessed with you. I have four kids, a full-time job, two (or more) blogs and other stuff. So please don't think I'm crazy. I AM crazy, but not in the middle-aged follow semi-celebrities around town way. Long story short: I'm not obsessed with you. 
Though, to be honest, now I'm kind of obsessed with making sure you don't think I'm obsessed. Weird. 

Sincerely, Steph

I can't win. I can't come up with a way to write it that doesn't sound crazy. Anyone who insists they aren't crazy is probably a little bit crazy, or at least that's our societal perception. 


Oh well. Maybe I'll just roll with it. He doesn't know us. He doesn't know me. I'll just lay low and lurk and not comment on his blog for a few days. That'll show non-obsession, right?

Help me, First Eye!!


Anonymous said...

You may or may have not described my "non-obsession" with Eli.

Steph said...

In my best Mr. Burns voice: Eeeexcellent. :)

Anonymous said...

Word. Twice up the barrel and once down the side.

Steph said...

You said it!

Magan said...

Your hair looks wonderful today!

Kate said...

Hey, Eli probably knows of your non-obsession, now, since someone just gave him a link to this post. Cheers!

Love your writing style, BTW.

Sincerely, another middle aged (ugh, how'd THAT happen?) non-obsessed Stranger fan.

Steph said...

Magan thank you! Yours as well!

Kate- LOL! I think he read it right after I wrote it, but I appreciate the shout out anyway!! :)

Angelique Napier said...

Hi, I love your writing :) I found this whilst being a non-obsessed almost but not quite 30 blogger reading ItJustGetsStranger for the 100000th time. It puts the happy in my day, as did your blog, which I shall be reading from now on as well. Thanks for sharing :)

Steph said...

Thanks, Angie! I LOVE Eli's blog. It's my daily dose of happy, too. (Well, most of the time, unless he's being all serious!)