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I happened to encounter a couple of Mormon missionaries while walking through Eola Park last week (we talked about how their church is trying to get away from the use of “Mormon” and how that might even be harder for them than it is for me).

I should note they were both good-looking guys in their early ‘20’s, so I was probably more interested in chatting with them than other folks I might encounter.

I also know a bit about how the LDS works as one of my exes was a church member.

Nevertheless, I think they were amazed a progressive gay Democrat identifies as a Christian and is a somewhat regular churchgoer (thank goodness for the UMC congregations that believe in Open Hearts. Open Minds. Open Doors.)!

I also let them know that I value that LDS churches use their funds to support their members who might be unemployed, sick, whatever (areas with high LDS membership tend to have low poverty rates as they support their members during hard times from all those tithes and the average “stakehouse” where they meet tends to be modest so the funds are used for people instead of buildings).

I also talked about “Muscular Christianity” and the “Social Gospel”, things that arose as the Methodist Church in the US was growing back in the late 1900s- early 20th century.

I also learned from them. They were both very receptive to hearing about other traditions and think there are things they would like to see changed. Both plan to go college after they complete their mission and head back out West where they’re from.

Needless to say, given the church’s stance on social issues, I was not a successful recruit for them. I do think all of us came away with a feeling common ground is still possible across the red and blue divide.

All on a typical afternoon stroll around the Shores of Eola.

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3 hours ago, spenser1058 said:

I happened to encounter a couple of Mormon missionaries while walking through Eola Park last week (we talked about how their church is trying to get away from the use of “Mormon” and how that might even be harder for them than it is for me).

I should note they were both good-looking guys in their early ‘20’s, so I was probably more interested in chatting with them than other folks I might encounter.

I also know a bit about how the LDS works as one of my exes was a church member.

Nevertheless, I think they were amazed a progressive gay Democrat identifies as a Christian and is a somewhat regular churchgoer (thank goodness for the UMC congregations that believe in Open Hearts. Open Minds. Open Doors.)!

I also let them know that I value that LDS churches use their funds to support their members who might be unemployed, sick, whatever (areas with high LDS membership tend to have low poverty rates as they support their members during hard times from all those tithes and the average “stakehouse” where they meet tends to be modest so the funds are used for people instead of buildings).

I also talked about “Muscular Christianity” and the “Social Gospel”, things that arose as the Methodist Church in the US was growing back in the late 1900s- early 20th century.

I also learned from them. They were both very receptive to hearing about other traditions and think there are things they would like to see changed. Both plan to go college after they complete their mission and head back out West where they’re from.

Needless to say, given the church’s stance on social issues, I was not a successful recruit for them. I do think all of us came away with a feeling common ground is still possible across the red and blue divide.

All on a typical afternoon stroll around the Shores of Eola.

Wow.

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Assuming I have the time, I always enjoy talking to the rand-os that have an opinion about something.  I talked to an older man about his passion for making Mahjong more accessible to the youth of today once at Lake Eola.  I was just there trying to learn how to take better photographs (I'm still a rank amateur, but it makes me happy) and was under no time constraints.  As long as people behave and have a nice tone I will chat when I can.  Likely this might be surprising to Spenser, but EVEN ABOUT POLITICS*! 

 

 

 

*I just hate when politics blends with message boards because the bitterness and partisanship overshadow the topic.  I still hate partisan politics in person, but I know that I'm not going to inflame the other person, so I can listen/discuss their beliefs without issue most of the time.  Now if someone just starts getting nasty, that conversation ends immediately.  Although I don't have many people mouth off to me in person, because even though it's almost never going to happen, I do have a physical appearance that I might crush someone for doing so.  I am a gentle giant.

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1 hour ago, HankStrong said:

Assuming I have the time, I always enjoy talking to the rand-os that have an opinion about something.  I talked to an older man about his passion for making Mahjong more accessible to the youth of today once at Lake Eola.  I was just there trying to learn how to take better photographs (I'm still a rank amateur, but it makes me happy) and was under no time constraints.  As long as people behave and have a nice tone I will chat when I can.  Likely this might be surprising to Spenser, but EVEN ABOUT POLITICS*! 

I used to enjoy engaging JW's (not JFW's) in long debates about creationism and Christianity until they'd start looking at their watches and saying  things like "Oh, would you look at the time!!!" or "My goodness how late it's getting!!!"

The fun part was not letting them go and watching them squirm uncomfortably as they tried to leave politely. :D

1 hour ago, HankStrong said:

*I just hate when politics blends with message boards because the bitterness and partisanship overshadow the topic.  I still hate partisan politics in person, but I know that I'm not going to inflame the other person, so I can listen/discuss their beliefs without issue most of the time.  Now if someone just starts getting nasty, that conversation ends immediately.  Although I don't have many people mouth off to me in person, because even though it's almost never going to happen, I do have a physical appearance that I might crush someone for doing so.  I am a gentle giant.

Same here. I am very large and have a kind of mean looking facial expression that makes me appear as though I'd bite someone's face off.

But in reality, when I find little bugs in the house I catch them and let them out rather than swat them.

Take in stray cats, etc.

 

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17 hours ago, JFW657 said:

I used to enjoy engaging JW's (not JFW's) in long debates about creationism and Christianity until they'd start looking at their watches and saying  things like "Oh, would you look at the time!!!" or "My goodness how late it's getting!!!"

The fun part was not letting them go and watching them squirm uncomfortably as they tried to leave politely. :D

I'm more in line with let people believe how they want to believe.  I don't have any inner need to make people squirm or try to put the screws to them.  I talk for a few minutes and move on.  That applies to whatever/whoever I'm talking to or about.

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1 hour ago, HankStrong said:

I'm more in line with let people believe how they want to believe.  I don't have any inner need to make people squirm or try to put the screws to them.  I talk for a few minutes and move on.  That applies to whatever/whoever I'm talking to or about.

I don't usually even get into such conversations period.

But when they come to your house and knock on your door..... 

And I wasn't pounding my beliefs into their heads with a mallet, just engaging them in a long, seemingly endless religious conversation that they started but didn't expect to become quite so engaged in.

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On 10/28/2019 at 11:15 PM, popsiclebrandon said:

I'm really kinda dumbfounded as to why jvest lives downtown if he views it as some sort of homeless hellscape.

Also the bigger problem is the people who hang outside Publix and canvas for some cause or religion. They are there every single day and annoy every person going in. I'm basically done going to Publix because of it. Sucks that the city feels they can't do anything about it.

Because downtown is a pivotable point. I lived here 10 years ago and it was starting to go in the right direction until the economy took a hit. It took from then until now to finally have developers trying to scrape up any bit of land in downtown Orlando to build on. That's why I came back here. We have some of the biggest infrastructure projects happening right now in the entire country. Obviously, I don't have to convince any of you. Eventually, we will hit some critical mass and this homeless issue might fix itself. 

By the way, the religious folk may be annoying, but at least you don't have to worry about being stabbed, stalked or harassed. Can't even compare. 

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1 hour ago, FLClarkKent said:

Here's an unpopular opinion: After spending the last weekend in downtown Tampa, I really began to miss....7-Eleven. I needed to pick up a few necessities, and there were none to be found.  

As much as I've participated in the fun we've had around here at 7 Eleven's expense, I appreciate having them there. 

Any small store that sells cheap food and beverages and where you can get quickly in and out is a plus for downtown.

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As much as I've participated in the fun we've had around here at 7 Eleven's expense, I appreciate having them there. 
Any small store that sells cheap food and beverages and where you can get quickly in and out is a plus for downtown.


There are 7-Eleven’s all over Stockholm, and Stockholm remains a pretty cool city. And, they eat reindeer meat, which is much edgier than turkey legs.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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15 hours ago, Jvest55 said:

By the way, the religious folk may be annoying, but at least you don't have to worry about being stabbed, stalked or harassed. Can't even compare. 

Having basically spent my childhood and a good chunk of my adult life in downtown I've never feared being "stabbed, stalked, or harassed" by any homeless person.  

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9 minutes ago, RedStar25 said:

Having basically spent my childhood and a good chunk of my adult life in downtown I've never feared being "stabbed, stalked, or harassed" by any homeless person.  

Back when Eola Park was the cruising district, many of them were a lot cuter than the JW’s, too!

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Personally I’ve seen panhandlers become more hostile lately.   I walk around the CBD most weekdays and while I didn’t feel physically threatened at a busy corner like Church and Orange,  I probably would have been - er, I definitely would have been if on a less busy area or a different time of day.    

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8 minutes ago, Jernigan said:

Personally I’ve seen panhandlers become more hostile lately.   I walk around the CBD most weekdays and while I didn’t feel physically threatened at a busy corner like Church and Orange,  I probably would have been - er, I definitely would have been if on a less busy area or a different time of day.    

Yeah I've noticed a trend in the last 2ish years. I think its unfortunately tied into the opioid epidemic. Its still rare but a few of them are much more hostile than it has been in the past. Its maybe 2-3 of them that I know I want to cross the street to avoid like the dude who beat up the guy at Oudoum.

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It seems as though the larger, busier and more populated a city's downtown area gets, the more the homeless population grows, which means more chances of encountering aggressive types. I've had more experiences with aggressive transients in downtown Tampa than in Orlando, but Orlando is slowly catching up.  

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