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Friday, June 28, 2013

UPDATED: FREE DISCUSSION PAGE and Postcards from Polygamy, USA - Talia Sawyer, associate producer of Polygamy USA, shares experiences

Postcards from Polygamy, USA
For the documentary crew of Polygamy, USA figuring out the next thing to shoot was just one of many challenges. Living and working on location meant months away from home, friends, and family. Being embedded in the community also required a sense of responsibility towards the customs of the people of Centennial Park. We asked one crew member, Talia Sawyer, associate producer on the series to share with us her experience in the field.
PART2 PICTURES: Talia, how did you begin working at Part2 Pictures?
Talia Sawyer: I first heard about Part2 Pictures after doing a series of “informational interviews” with people working in the film and TV industry in New York City.  During one of these meetings, I mentioned that I was looking for a small production company with a lot of personality that made high quality, socially responsible programming.  Without hesitation, the guy I was talking to said that Part2 would be “right up my alley.”  I was a big fan of Part2′s work on “Hard Time” and “The Redemption of General Butt Naked” so I scheduled a meeting with Greg Henry (co-owner) and it instantly felt like the right fit.
P2: What was  your initial reaction when you were assigned to work on a show about a polygamist community in Utah?
TS: My first reaction was total fascination and a lot of excitement.  It’s such a rare opportunity to put faces to the names and stories you read about in your college courses. My biggest fear was that I would accidentally offend someone or that I wouldn’t be able to relate to the people in the community, but I was wrong. I met a lot of young women my age who were bright and strong, not the wilting flowers people in the outside world might expect. Although their religious and spiritual beliefs couldn’t be farther from my own liberal-kumbaya upbringing, I developed a deep respect for the conviction and moral fortitude with which the people of Centennial Park live their lives.
P2: There is a wonderful photo of all the women on the crew in long skirts. Was the decision to wear modest clothing made by the crew or did it come from production management? What can you tell me about the importance of dressing for the community?
TS: Ultimately it was the producers decision to wear long skirts and modest clothing.  I was proud to be working for people with that degree of respect and I thought it was really cool that they would take that kind of thing into consideration.  Despite the difficulties of maneuvering equipment and running around with a heavy lens belt while wearing a long skirt, it was rewarding to hear people say how much they appreciated the gesture.  In some cases, I think it helped break down barriers and it made me feel less like an outsider.  In fact, once the initial awkwardness wore off, I realized that soft cotton skirts were infinitely more comfortable than pants and I would joke with the women in Centennial Park that “the skirts in New York can’t get any shorter.  Might as well start a new trend.”
P2: What did you take away from your experience in this environment?
TS: Filming the Hammon family on Thanksgiving, I was really sad knowing my own family was 2,000 miles away, celebrating without me.  After a particularly long shoot day, we were finally able to put the cameras down and eat dinner together.  That was the first night I really got to bond with Uncle Arthur’s wives and daughters.  We talked and joked a lot about all the differences in our lifestyles– topics ranging from living with sister wives, to the perils of urban dating, to wearing pants. That’s when Uncle Arthur said (in his iconic way), “The best thing that will come out of this whole thing are the relationships you are all forming with each other, and the ones we are all forming together.”  I think that sums it up.  It was a memorable moment when the camera’s shut off and it became way more than just a job.

(Source:  http://www.part2pictures.com/news/postcards-from-polygamy-usa)

THIS POST IS OPEN FOR FREE DISCUSSION!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Author banned from Tuacahn Market for 'graphic content' 'Fifty Years in Polygamy' deemed not family friendly


 — A former polygamist and current author has been banned from selling her book at the Tuacahn Saturday Market after market officials say they began receiving complaints that the book had descriptions of her past that were “graphic” and not considered “family friendly.”
Market officials admit they have not actually read the book.
New Harmony resident Kristyn Decker is the author of “Fifty Years in Polygamy: Big Secrets and Little White Lies” that depicts her experience as a former polygamist and sister wife.
Decker said she began selling her book at the market last spring after her book was released in May and has had an “awesome” experience until she received the phone call from a market representative asking her not to return.
Please read the rest at:  http://www.thespectrum.com/article/20130620/NEWS01/306190019/Author-banned-from-Tuacahn-Market-graphic-content-

In this file photo, former polygamist Kristyn Decker speaks with reporters before a January hearing in Salt Lake City on whether Utah can prohibit plural marriage. Decker says she's been banned from selling her book, 'Fifty Years in Polygamy: Big Secrets and Little White Lies,' at the Tuacahn Saturday Market because of complaints that some parts of her book aren't 'family friendly.' (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer) / AP

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Polygamy, USA : The New Polygamist

Time sure flies when you're having fun! So we have come to the last episode, which in true reality show fashion, should try to tie up all those silly loose ends generated throughout the season. Of course, NatGeo is not as slick as Bravo's stable of reality shows, or smarmy like TLCs Sister Wives (i.e. no crying Kody or Meri or Robyn, no kids running around a cul-de-sac jubilantly flying kites). Hmm....I wonder what we'll see?

Before we start, here's some Michael Cawley inspired artwork of the polygamists whose ends were still hanging loose in the last episode.

Uncle Art, son Ezra and wife Gloria
Newlyweds Hyrum and Kellie         

And of course, those happy (and totally soused) sisterwives, Rebecca and Marleen

So I can hear you thinking, "But what about Rose Marie?" Ah yes, when we last left Rose Marie, she was accompanied by her father and about to step into the Brethren's office door. She had decided to leave it up to the Brethren to decide which man in their small community she will marry.

According to the narrator, we learn this is the first time "outsiders" have been allowed in a Brethren's office. From the look of his office, I can see why. See how carefully Brethren Cawley has organized his office and desk? At first glance it looks like a normal office, but when you look a little closer...

Notice the book of Priesthood Discourses 1962 placed prominently in the middle of the desk. There's the computer disc probably holding top secret church matters on the right, and a book of puzzles on the left corner.  And of course the golf bag holding...Ping golf clubs, I bet. Sitting next to a non-descript brown box. I wonder if the Brethren have placed the names all the "eligible" CP men names in that box and the one they pull out will be Rose Marie's husband. Hmmm.....

Anyway,  being that Brethren Cawley has the same last name as Michael Cawley I supposed it would be safe to assume they are related. In fact, they are. Now, I won't spill the beans on how close a relationship it is, but I will say that male pattern baldness is inherited from a man's mother.

After the meeting, (and apparently after being coached by the producers) Rose Marie decided to approach her mother with a question...What if she feels the Brethren made the wrong choice? Could  she still say no?

Rose got this look of total mortification on her face. You could almost hear her mind saying "Not in front of the cameras...NOT IN FRONT OF THE CAMERAS!!!" She hurriedly spitted out "If you don't feel right about it, you do not do anything." OOPS, wrong answer Rose. So Rose Marie spelled it out by saying that "Papa" said if you go to the Brethren for help and they give you a name, you don't say no because "...it's the Priesthood and they have a direct line to God...saying no to the them is like saying no to God." Yikes, how is Rose going to get out of this? Well, she fell back on how she had been taught. She explained "If you believe these men get inspiration from Heavenly Father...then if the answer comes from the Brethren then you are exercising your faith that Heavenly Father is working in your behalf and you believe that those men represent Him." But then she adds "...but you are the one whose going to live with the choice."

So, in other words, Rose Marie you should have just taken your chances because now you no longer have a choice. Get ready for that 70 year old husband. Stick a fork in Rose Marie, she's done.

Next, we have Ezra's story arc. The Brethren decided he needed two things before they would approve his marriage: 1) $10000 in the bank and 2) a place to live.

Of course, a sensible, dutiful son would take the advice of his father. He would put his marriage plans on hold, join the missionaries and prove to the Brethren he is worthy to be married. But Ezra isn't sensible or dutiful. In fact, he's irrational, immature and already a ne'er do well at 19 years of age. He wants everything NOW, and doesn't have a clue how to get it. And the way he shakes when he's around Tiffany makes me wonder if all this "I need it NOW" is driven by his need to...release his inner tensions if you know what I mean.

Anyway, his parents - Uncle Art and Gloria still want to meet and discuss with him about North Dakota and how he plans on meeting the requirements set by the Brethren. Now, this meeting might have worked if Ezra was level-headed and sensible. But he isn't. It's obvious he has no idea how to go about setting goals, making plans to meet those goals and saving money. He doesn't even know how much money, if any, he will be making. What a dumb-ass.

But it was particularly cruel of Uncle Art to imply that Tiffany may not wait for him, and that he hopes "Absence makes her heart grow fonder." Gee, maybe that's the reason Ezra is so messed up, ya think?

And when Ezra tells Tiffany he is leaving for North Dakota, she is so sad.  She even tells him to remember he's got a girlfriend at home but she seemed resigned to the fact he will stray anyway.  So it's a contest who will get the Dear John/Jane letter first.

Don't worry, Tiffany. He'll return like a bad penny always does.

I saved myself for marriage. I haven't kiss a guy before...
So let's look at another couple of young people whose marriage was sanctioned by the Brethren. Yep, I'm talking those newlyweds named Hyrum and Kellie.

Now here are two people who were thrown together because Kellie couldn't get Hyrum's name out of her head when she was a sophomore in high school.

Hyrum kind of understands what's going on. As we watch him packing up his clothes for the move to his brother's house, he talks about barely knowing Kellie.

In fact, he's talking like he's moving into a co-ed dorm room, and Kellie will be his roommate. Kellie says she definitely likes him, and that "love ...will come after we get to know each other and live with each other..."
Sorry, but I kissed a girl before

Ay Carumba!!! I have a feeling Kellie's gonna be in for some disappointment. Something tells me Hyrum will be pulling as many strings as possible to get a girl he really likes to marry him in a couple of years. Yep, marriage to Kellie may be duty, but Hyrum looks like he wants a wife who could match him shot for shot of tequila. A girl similar to ...Connie Cawley, perhaps. (Ha, betcha thought I was going to say Rebecca, didn't you!)

In what could be the most uncomfortable scene for the entire season, Hyrum and Kellie sit down for lunch with each other.

Yeah, I  heard about that...

With Kellie giggling incessantly, Hyrum tries to engage her in conversation. "Do you want to bite this?" Hyrum says, putting a slice of red bell pepper in Kellie's face. "Do you want to take a bite out of me?" Hyrum asks suggestively, with Kellie immediately recoiling away.

The only time Kellie answered like a mature woman was when Hyrum asked her "Do you want to have kids?"

"Well, not right now!" she says with a straight face, that immediately dissolves into giggles.

I wonder if Hyrum has Rebecca on speed dial? Like, he needs H E L P!!!

 And Kellie needs a T-shirt that says "Hyrum Kissed A Girl Before, And All He Gave Me Was This Fever Blister."

Good grief. When Michael Cawley brings out that torn picture of what he envisioned his life to be in the year 2040, all I can say is...What a strange 18 year old he must have been. I mean really strange. And I wonder how the corner of his masterpiece got torn off.

And then he starts this discourse on "Raising up a Righteous Royal Seed" and housing them in...hold on to your chapeaus, rusty shipping containers from China no less.

Yep, seven wives
and 50 children, housing the "excess" righteous royal seeds in shipping containers. No wonder Connie is throwing him a WTF look while he's going gaga about containers at the table.

The wives  most vehemently against the container housing were Rose and Connie, with Runaway wife Teresa wanting to spend the money on standard additions to the home. Yeah, like regular people in Centennial Park do.

Once inside the containers (which are not just eyesores, but damn ugly rusty eyesores) we see an amazing turn of events. Suddenly Rose is on board with Michael. So is Runaway Wife Teresa. Connie has been left slowly twisting in the wind. The containers will stay and be used as housing for Michael's righteous royal seed. Sorry Connie, but next time wear a shirt that doesn't have pink horsies  and chickies on it if you want to be taken seriously.

So what do two sister wives do when their hubby goes off to work for 5 weeks. Well, in the case of Rebecca and Marleen, you have a steak night and drink lots and lots of wine.

Once they were thoroughly soused, they played a card game. The winner, one of them decided, would get the other wives' night with Isaiah. Now, I'm getting a lot of vibes from these ladies...mainly an undertone of competition they try to hide with "Oh Marleen, you're so funny" or "Oh Rebecca, you're such a nerd." Yeah right. I think what Marleen's  thinking is Rebecca, it's time for you to get off your skinny behind and start having some more babies!

How does she walk in those things?
And to the NatGeo Producer, I have a question. Why the lingering shot of Marleen's extremely high heeled shoes she wore to the Dixie State conference?

At the conference, Marleen fielded questions like a professional. Professional polygamist, that is. For example, driving home the fact that she isn't like the polygamists of the FLDS. She chose to live her life as a polygamist and she has never been abused, Thank you very much. Actually I believe her. Who'd want to try and mess with a woman wearing 7 inch heels? Those things are lethal weapons!

The episode ends with the Centennial Park families going to worship. Uncle Art asked Rose Cawley to step up to the podium and give testimony.

Rose said she was grateful for the film crew (being that they are right there in her face). It's what God wanted them to do so people can see "what we want them to see."

And what she says is so true of this series. It wasn't a matter of showing outsiders Centennial Park, but one of only showing outsiders the Centennial Park the insiders want them to see. We saw the older, wiser polygamists and the new generation. We saw how they place couples into marriage. We saw how the community "missionaries" help to build houses and schools.

But as outsiders, we can also see how some things just don't make sense.

For example, saying that woman makes the choice who they will marry when in actuality their choice must be approved by the Brethren. And if a woman decides to allow the Brethren to "place" her in marriage, if she believes in her religion she will not say no to their choice of husband.

We saw a 15 year old girl break down in tears at the thought of not being able to bear children for her future husband.

We are told there is no abuse, but we see Art Hammon throwing a boot at a young man's head, and saying to son Ezra "You get kisses from your mother, you get a kick in the ass from me."

And don't forget the bedtime story reading by Michael Cawley that said women who live in monogamy are condemning their daughters to live as harlots in the street. And although the producers strove to "hide" the huge mansions, they are still there for all to see, courtesy of Google Map. Huge mansions being built while the groundwater of Centennial Park is too radioactive to drink, and still no building of their temple on Berry Knoll. Why are the super wealthy men of Centennial Park not taking better care of their community?

The good people of Centennial Park may think we outsiders only see the facade, but they need to know that facade is crumbling and their dark secrets are slowly but surely being seen in all their glory. Centennial Park wake up.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Curtis T. Brown, brother of "Sister Wives" Kody Brown, passed away.


WORLAND – Beloved husband, father, brother, son and friend, Curtis Taylor Brown, 34, passed away on Monday, June 17, 2013 from injuries sustained in a motorcycle accident.

Curtis was born on Sept. 24, 1978 in Lovell, the seventh child of Winn and Genielle Brown.

Early on, it was apparent that Curt was gifted intellectually and spiritually. He had a great imagination, writing and drawing his own comics. He was a voracious reader and loved learning, with a photographic memory, who quoted movies, literature and scripture. As he grew, he became a talented poet and Shakespearian philosopher. He always had a drive for self-improvement and he would read and tinker with something until he became an expert on it. His passion for motorcycles and tearing them apart to rebuild them with his own amazing Dirty Ratt flair was just one of many examples of his talent and self-drive. He was also blessed in his career as an oil and gas completions consultant, which was another example of his need to become the best that he could be. Anyone who knew him knew that he was the best father, husband and friend, no improvement needed.

He met the love of his life and soul mate, Erica Brush, on a blind date, knowing that night that she would be his wife and she felt the same way about him. Throughout their 13 years of marriage, they were still honeymooners. Together they were blessed with three amazing children, Carter, 12, McCayde, 8, and Kinlynn, 7.

He had a strong faith in Jesus Christ and a giving heart. One example of this is recently when Curt learned that students at his children’s school were running a mile race without sufficient shoes. He drove to Cody late that night to buy 30 pairs of running shoes for those students so they would have them in time for the run the next morning. Even in death, Curtis generously gave life to many people as an organ donor.

His favorite thing in the world to do was snuggle with his kids and wife on the couch and watch old movies. It was their favorite thing to do with him as well. He loved spending time with them whether swimming, playing Legos and going turkey hunting with his sons, playing dolls with his daughter, going for bike rides with them and playing at the park. He always looked forward to his time at home and loved to surprise his wife with flowers and a beautiful self-penned poem. Always the romantic, he made his wife feel like a queen and the most blessed woman on Earth. They were truly soul mates.

Curtis touched lives wherever he was with his infectious smile and amazing personality. He will be missed by all.

Curtis is survived by his wife, Erica; his children, Carter, McCayde and Kinlynn; his parents; and his siblings, Cindy, Scott, Lorilyn, Kody, Christy, Tricia, Travis, Nicole and Michael. He is also survived by Erica’s family, Mike and Diana Brush, Levi, Seth (Tiffany) and Caleb and an adopted brother, Joe Bertagnole.
Funeral services will be Saturday, June 22 at 10 a.m. at the Worland Middle School Auditorium, 2150 Howell Avenue with graveside services following. The viewing will be held Friday, June 21 from 6-7 p.m. at the Bryant Funeral Home, 1320 Big Horn Avenue in Worland.

Memorial donations may be made in Curtis’ name in care of Bryant Funeral Home.

Online condolences may be made at www.bryantfuneralhomeonline.com.

CURTIS BROWN was the friendly, affable brother of Kody Brown who came down to ride motorcycles in S03E07 "Brown Boys Do Vegas."

Curtis and his wife Erica Brush Brown. 

This picture reminded me of the excellent preaching Curtis did at the Brown home.


Who can forget this clip, where Breanna was a tad too excited to see the Uncles she may have met once. Curtis and his wife Erica are seen in this clip, along with Kody's youngest brother Michael and eldest brother Scott:

We here at Sister Wives Blog have our most sincere thoughts and prayers on our mind to the entire Brown family.

We are not opening this post up to comments out of respect for the Browns. We suggest that if you would like to give your condolences, the best thing to do is to reach out to them on Facebook, Twitter, TLC forum, possibly the funeral home website, or other Social Media that they use.

Why?  So that the Browns will be sure to see them. 

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Updated: MORE NEW CLIPS Our America with Lisa Ling Modern Polygamy - Teresa moves out and comes back.

***Please check comments at about comment 74-76. I have added a new article link and two more video clips to check out. Thanks!

In Nov. 2011 we covered an E2 of the series "Our America With Lisa Ling - Modern Polygamy." Since that time, the video was pulled-however, we were lucky and found a link to the show in it's entirety. Why such interest in an older show? It is all about Centennial Park, and some of the same folks on this show are highlighted on POLYGAMY USA. It's almost like peeking into their world a couple years sooner.

Here the link to the original show:


Yes, you will feel like you are in Pokeman commercial world, but once the show is on, you'll forget all that!

Since then, clips have come out. Teresa in this clip moved out of the family home, then returned. Even Ole Arthur is in the clip.

The Story Continues: Modern Polygamy - Our America with Lisa Ling - Oprah Winfrey Network
And Dr. Drew:
It's a peek back in time to probably what got the ball rolling on "Polygamy USA."

Monday, June 10, 2013

--- Discussion Page 2 Polygamy, USA Episodes --- The Priesthood Council and God Has Spoken

USA Today/AP
OK...what's the deal with that Stan Shepp fellow?

For some odd reason, the producers of Polygamy, USA chose not to fill the overbearing convert's background to viewers.

Face it, this guy set off EVERYBODY'S weirdo meter, so I let my fingers do the googling to find out what the deal is with this guy. This is what I found out.

Stan Shepp started out as a Catholic, living in Pennsylvania. He converted to Mormonism in 1989. In 1992 he got married to Tracey Roberts (also Mormon), who had 3 children from a previous marriage.  In 1993, she gave birth to another daughter, her only child with Shepp.

For some reason, Shepp became interested in Mormon Fundamentalism. When he started talking sister wives with wife Tracey, she said thanks but no thanks and left  him in April 2000. In February 2001, Tracey was granted a divorce. A month later, the LDS church excommunicated Shepp for his views on plural marriage.

Now here is where things get a bit...crazy.

Stan and Tracey shared custody of their young daughter. Stan wanted his young child to be a plural wife.  According to court records, his ex-wife testified that not only did Shepp's interest in polygamy break up their marriage, but that he planned on  preparing his pre-teen daughter to be married at age 13. A county judge prohibited Shepp from teaching his child about plural marriage at least until she reached the age of 18. The county judge's ruling was upheld by the state Superior Court.

In September 2006, the Pennsylvania  Supreme Court overturned the lower courts and  ruled in Shepp's favor. His discussion about religion was protected by the constitution and that the court did not find evidence that his discussing plural marriage would "constitute a grave threat of harm to the child."

Some other tidbits I found:

In court, Shepp's ex-wife claimed he also wanted to marry her daughters from a previous marriage. Shepp of course denied the allegations.

Shepp apparently considered himself an "adopted son" of polygamist Tom Green. You know, he was the polygamist sent to prison for welfare fraud and - hold on to your hats - marrying the underage daughters of his wives. Of course Shepp distanced himself from Green when he was convicted and sent to prison.

And now we have the recent ( February 2013) exchange between Shepp and Ezra Hammon on Ezra's Facebook page where Shepp attempted to slap down Ezra  because his dating Tiffany was "against the teachings of the community..." Ezra's reply was simple: "...we are taught that we have choice. And many people in the world don't think we do...I don't need someone that I attend meeting with to accuse me of my personal choices, especially when it has nothing to do with you."

I'm impressed...nice job by the grandson of the co-founder of Centennial Park to a measly convert!

I wonder if Polygamy, USA will address Stan Shepp's past since they made such an effort to introduce him last week.

I also found an article written by Charles T Cawley (on the Priesthood Council with  half-brother John W Timpson) that is simply eye-opening. What is most interesting is his reason why Centennial Park is reaching out to the public via a reality show on the National Geographic channel.

He explains their actions were necessary because  "Other television programs have aimed at more sensational (and often misrepresentative) aspects of life in plural marriage, at best a half-truth about the lifestyle..."

Hmmmm....now I wonder what other TV programs he could be referring to? Read the full article here: Why We’ve Opened Our Doors for Polygamy USA

And from the sublime of Polygamy, USA to the ridiculous. So what have the Browns been up to, lately? Ho hum....

Well, Aspyn and Mariah officially graduated from high school. Strange no tweets from Christine but at least Meri made sure she included her bonus child...when she wasn't proudly showing off Mariah!

Proud Mama reports all of Mariah's high school accomplishments...

So when asked if Mariah was going to medical school...oh heck, here's the conversation you can read for yourself!

Of course I just had to look up Westminster College...it is a 4 year liberal arts college in Salt Lake City. So she's going to Westminster college for 4 years then transferring to the University of Utah. I wonder if Mariah will be establishing Utah residency in those  years so she can qualify for in-state tuition. Just something that makes you go...hmmmmm.

So what did the proud papa have to say?

Gee Kody (and Papa Joe)...I suppose if you had something to HIDE you might be alarmed, but if the government wants to be bored by reading my emails or reviewing my phone calls, go for it! My tax dollars at work!

And will someone at TLC get Kody and Meri on that show that does makeovers? They are embarrassing...

Maybe if they dressed like z-listed stars, Robin Leach will write more than one sentence about them in the Las Vegas Sun, or at least pretend he knows them....

Here's what Mr Champagne Wishes and Caviar Dreams had to say about the less than dynamic duo:

"Oddest sight at The Tenors in The Smith Center on Sunday night: reality TV show polygamist Kody Brown, his four wives and one of his mothers-in-law."

OUCH!! Let's hope the mother-in-law he was referring to was a real mother-in-law and not Meri.

Read more: http://www.lasvegassun.com/news/2013/jun/03/strip-scribbles-2013-miss-usa-pageant-lv-chef-phil/#ixzz2VqyVLolr

Finally, we have Janelle tweeting out a commercial of all things for a local Vegas store. Nice job, too...

I haven't had time to read Robyn's newest TLC blog...I simply haven't the strength.

This is a free discussion area so discuss on!!!

edited on 6/10/13 at 10:51PM PST
Sources: http://www.nytimes.com/2008/02/13/us/13custody.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

UPDATE: Polygamy, USA: The Priesthood Council and God Has Spoken

What a "fun" episode this was. First, there was Centennial Park Mike reading this sermon how women who do not live the Principle of Plural Marriage will doom their daughters to live as harlots. Then there was Ezra nervously contemplating  having his non-plyg girlfriend  meet his parents. And finally, there was the continuing saga of Hyrum - the longest serving missionary in Centennial Park. Will he finally graduate from his mission or will the Brethren condemn him to one more year because he can't be bothered to shave every morning?

Well, let's get started, shall we?

CP Mike thinking about how it rubs the lotion on it's skin...
There was something very creepy about CP Mike  reading that sermon about harlots to his small children as if it was a bedtime story. Not only was it inappropriate for children, it was a nightmarish depiction of  what supposedly happens when a woman chooses monogamy.  It was BRAINWASHING, plain and simple. Who uses the word harlot in the 21st century? 

Does anyone else think that book CP Mike was reading from was the collected sermons of Warren Jeffs? It just sounded so eerily like him.

But wait, the creepiness doesn't just end there. We get to see the Cawleys plan their grocery shopping for the week. Now if you've seen this episode, you're already aware of the "applesauce" incident where poor 1st wife Rose had to tell her strong priesthood holder that they needed more applesauce. Let's just say the look of fear on Rose's face says it all. As CP Mike bemoans, in that creepy monotone voice of his, about how expensive food supplies are and how he budgets $5-600 dollars each week, I'm thinking that figure is way too low.  I figure at least $200 for each adult, so that's over $800 when you factor in the teens. Later, when CP Mike tells us he paid about $900, I'm thinking, yeah, that sounds about right. Dude, you need to redo your budget!

Seriously, they could cut their grocery costs by economizing on some non-food items. Like, instead of buying disposable diapers, investing in cotton diapers. And maybe checking out the Duggar's website for some great instructions on making laundry soap. And how about growing vegetables and having some chickens in the backyard. It just seems so backwards to grind their own wheat but then spend money buying expensive, non reusable disposable diapers. There's a lot they could do to cut costs if they really wanted!

But back to the show. It's CP Mike's 2nd wife Connie's birthday and he takes her to a nice restaurant to celebrate. CP Mike is just...so...hopelessly....nerdy. I just felt so sorry for Connie (who I think is CP Mike's favorite wife by the way) when he broke it to her that, not only could she not have just anything on the menu, she also had to go back to work. Even though her words said she agreed with CP Mike's decision, her facial expressions clearly did not. And when she mentioned she didn't think her sisterwife Rose could handle being responsible for 9 kids every day, oh boy...that's the way to throw a sister wife under the bus, Connie! I mean, bonus daughter Rose Marie is 18 now. If she's old enough to be on the lookout for a husband, she should be able to help out her mother with the young kids, right?

Which leads us directly to Ezra, Uncle Art's ne'er do well, unmarried son. The way I see it, Ezra has a lot in common with his missionary positioned cousin Hyrum. They both like to wear facial hair. They both live at home, and they both possess those Hammon brows. But where the two cousins part ways is the fact that Ezra has a girlfriend. When Ezra picks her up for a date, he gets out of the car and goes to her door. And most important, HE wants to marry her.

Now before I continue, I must get something off my ample chest. Am I the only viewer who did not realize that Ezra's mother was only 43 years old and that she looks pregnant? Frankly, I thought she just had a case of middle age spread, but after I watched this episode, it suddenly dawned on me...Holy Toledo! We still have not met wife #3 yet, although I've heard rumors that she opted not to appear. Psst....I think old Uncle Art has more than 3 wives, too. What a virile stud he is!!

But I digress...

While Ezra was picking up Tiffany, his mothers (and sisters) were busy making dinner. As the family assembled around the table, it became apparent Ezra was running late. Seems that's another trait he shares with his cousin Hyrum.  Uncle Art seemed nervous while waiting for Ezra to arrive. When Ezra finally showed up, Uncle Art ordered his family to be respectful and then asked Ezra to introduce Tiffany to the family.

Surprise, Surprise! Uncle Art was actually quite charming with Tiffany. He's not so scary after all she thinks. I'm thinking old Art is being nice because he figures if Tiffany smartens up she'll dump that lazy lug Ezra and marry him instead. But seriously, Uncle Art doesn't think Ezra's relationship with Tiffany will last because it's built on love. And love fades quickly, especially if the guy doesn't have a pot to you know what in.

Which leads us directly to Ezra's cousin Hyrum.

While Hyrum was dutifully sweeping the street and barking orders to his clean up crew, he gets a phone call from the Brethren Office.  Now if this had been the Housewives of Centennial Park, Hyrum would have answered the call on speakerphone. Unfortunately, it's not so we only got to hear Hyrum's side of the conversation. Luckily, Hyrum's fellow street sweeper was still standing nearby, so in typical reality show style he starts a conversation that will fill us (the audience) in on what that call was about.

Dude, you're getting married!
Dude, I don't think so...
Dude, how many times does the Brethren call you?
Dude, more times than I want to admit on camera...

Hey you two Dudes! How about sweeping that gutter with a little more gusto cuz I'm still seeing a lot of dirt and leaves. Hop to it or I'll throw my Louboutins at your lazy ass heads!

Did I sound like Uncle Art? At least I didn't call them SOBs and sorry bastards but then again they aren't horses, are they?

Hyrum nervously rubbing the manly stubble on his face
Later, Hyrum moseyed on over to the Brethren Office, located in an unassuming building. In another typical reality show scripted moment, Hyrum finds out his time as a missionary has finally come to an end. The conversation is stilted, and just weird with Hyrum smiling while nervously rubbing the thick manly stubble on his face. No wonder the producers had the narrator explain that the "conversation" may seem obscure to outsiders.   Let's just hope Hyrum was a better missionary than an actor.

A few days later, Hyrum hits the jackpot. A young daughter of Zion has had a revelation she should be married to Hyrum. When she turned 18, she passed Hyrum's name to the Brethren, and now that Hyrum has been released from the missionary program, he finds out he's getting married!

But Hyrum does not look happy. In fact, he looks rather resigned. It became obvious Kellie was not one of the girl's he was expecting (ah....poor baby!) but rather than pout about it, he put on a semi-happy face. When we meet Kellie in the next scene, it soon became apparent why Hyrum was less than enthusiastic. And it really shows when Hyrum picks up Kellie for their "first date". Instead of walking up to her door, he just sat in his truck and she had to walk over to his truck and climb into it.

Now, when I was growing up, if a guy came to pick me up for a date and he honked his horn when he arrived, guess what? Yep, my Dad would not let me go out the door; that guy HAD to come to the door, and meet my Dad before taking me off on the date. Behavior like that is not only disrespectful to the girl, but to her family as well.

The Brethren made their decision, and Kellie, who apparently has been crushing on Hyrum since the 10th grade, gets to marry the man of her dreams after only 'courting' him after 14 days. This is how marriages are done in Centennial Park. But I think Hyrum's optimistically  looking on the bright side. If  his first wife was fulfilling his duty to God, perhaps he can still find his true love in a future wife.

Yep, I think I'm beginning to figure out the Centennial Park version of plural marriage. Accumulate wives until you find your true love, then accumulate some more.

It will be interesting to see how this saga between cousins Hyrum and Ezra will play out.

Polygamy, USA: God Has Spoken

In this episode, we continue the saga of several of Centennial Park's young folk: Graduated Missionary Hyrum; Ne'er Do Well Ezra; and Devoted Daughter Rose Marie whose quest for a husband seems to be at a standstill.

Plain and simple, Ezra has problems. A high school drop out, he yearns to be somebody. He wants to be noticed in his community, to be looked up to, to be a leader. But he just doesn't know how to go about it. He had a truck but when it broke down, he left it abandoned on the side of the road. And when Uncle Art waste his time and gas to haul Ezra's sorry azz to Salt Lake City, he wasn't even responsible enough to make sure he had his truck keys with him in order to retrieve his belongings from the locked truck. And now he wants to get married but he doesn't have a job and lives with his parents. The kid is an irresponsible mess.

The icing on this cake is Ezra still wants to live the Principle of Plural Marriage in Centennial Park. AND he desperately wants to get married, NOW. So he makes an appointment with the Brethren to plead his case.

I really don't know what Ezra expected the Brethren to tell him. When he returned from his meeting, he jokingly told Tiffany they were getting married, then quickly told her the truth. It seems the Brethren want Ezra to grow up before getting married. He must first find a place to live AND have $10,000 in the bank before they would approve of him getting married.

Even when you view Ezra and Tiffany's plight through a monogamist's  eyeglasses, it is obvious these two "lovers" are way too immature to be contemplating marriage. On one hand, Ezra tries to act like a macho man, but instead of looking for a job, we see him lying on his bed with a TV remote in his hand. And I get the impression that Ezra's idea of his father helping him out is being handed $10,000 and a house. 

But Uncle Art will not be fooled. He laid it out:  Ezra is in LUST. 

I think Uncle Art does care about Tiffany's well being and, like the other Brethren, know  where this is all going end. In this case, I can see the wisdom of the Priesthood Council. Marriage is for now and eternity for them. If Ezra marries Tiffany, their marriage might last a year or two, at most.

And where are Tiffany's parents in all this?

The Brethren have given Tiffany a gift: she should thank them and walk away before she gets hurt.

Later, Ezra is offered a job in North Dakota. Now, if he was a mature adult, he would tell his father he's leaving for a job in North Dakota. But when he does tell his father, it's to ask his permission - no doubt hoping Uncle Art will relent and give him the $10,000 so he can stay in Centennial Park. So it must have come to a big surprise to Ezra when his father implied North Dakota didn't sound like a bad idea after all.

So we the viewers are left with a cliffhanger: Will Ezra leave for North Dakota? Tune in next week to find out.

Let's segue to something more light-hearted. Yep, I'm talkin' Hyrum's bachelor party! Oh yeah, and Kellie's bachelorette mani/pedi party with Rose Marie, the Thomson wives and two friends.

Here's a brief summary:

There were no strippers, and Hyrum can throwback a shot of tequila like a champ.

Kellie says she knows enough about Hyrum to marry him, and can't wait to be best friends with her sisterwives. She also knows exactly what she wants on her french tips.

Hyrum thinks Kellie "is sweet", but also thinks there might be some "sharks ready to eat his legs off"  once he ventures into the deep end of the pool called marriage.

[Sorry, but I can't stand it when Marleen takes that sanctimonious tone of voice when she talks about how having sister wives is how women work out their salvation.]

Hyrum speculates his future to his posse by saying that he will get married and nine months later she will give birth.

Kellie feels that the one thing she and Hyrum have in common is their passion for their religion and that will make things easier for them.

I'm happy to hear there's SOME passion going on between Hyrum and Kellie!

Is it me or does Rose Marie sound more mature than Kellie? Rose Marie sounds like she knows what is expected of a wife -- making lots and lots of babies (no doubt courtesy of her father), but Kellie seems to ignore that part. She gives the impression that marriage is a big sorority party where she can hang out and be best buds with her sisterwives.

OK, the fainthearted may want to skip the next paragraph. This will be my opinion, and your mileage may vary...if you know what I mean.

My impression of Kellie is that she was not very popular in school and stayed in the background -- a lot. She saw Hyrum, and immediately fell into unrequited love. Luckily for her, she belonged in a religion where SHE could pick her husband. When the time came for her to submit a name, it was a no brainer: she said Hyrum...and lo and behold, it was approved. The problem is, she's emotionally stuck at being 13-14 years old. She's like a child, more concerned with putting
flowers on her french tipped nails. She thinks her sisterwives will be her friends, but probably hasn't given a thought  if they become her adversary instead. I'm sure she'll pray about it and repeating Marleen's words - this is how she will work out her salvation. And if Hyrum's unhappy, he'll just get another wife, but Kellie will be stuck in a marriage based on duty to husband and home and having lots and lots of babies. She will find solace in her religion, and her husband will find solace in another woman. What a sad life to look forward to...

BUT...Hyrum and Kellie do tie the old knot, although I would have loved to see the ceremony. My guess is there was a lot of giggling going on by the bride.

In one of the most romantic acts by a husband ever seen on a reality show (take notes ABC's The Bachelor), Hyrum prepared a "tree of life" up on sacred Berry Knoll to show his devotion to his new bride. There were ribbons to signify Hyrum and Kellie being tied together from this life into the next. An empty picture frame that they will fill with pictures of their children. An oil lamp to represent being sealed together forever and Hyrum's priesthood to show them the way. And a bowl of fruit that signifies Hyrum providing the things Kellie will need to sustain her through their life together, even through the rotting of their flesh into dust (oops, I think Hyrum had a TMI moment there)

And what did Kellie do throughout his presentation? She giggled....

I wonder if  Hyrum will do another tree of life for his next wives?

OK, that leaves us with Rose Marie, who unfortunately has not received any revelation which man she should marry.

She approaches her future duty as a wife like she was preparing for her final exams in school. Practice making dinner for  twenty to thirty people. Practice taking care of kids. Practice running the household. Practice. Practice. Practice. She wants the family not the man. Practice. Practice. Practice.

She's ready to step away from her father's family, but she can't until she gets that doggone revelation. Why won't her husband's name pop into her head, like what happened to Kellie? Why? Why? WHY???

If you ask me, I think God is telling Rose Marie maybe she should be doing something else instead of being married right now. Like learning about the world and meeting new, different people. Maybe God is telling her she needs to further her education, and then perhaps, that name will be revealed to her.

After some thought, she decides to put her fate into the hands of the Brethren. She only hopes the man the Brethren come up with is not too old, and is pleasing to the eye. Fat chance, Rose Marie. You're going to marry...Uncle Art!! But just like the Ezra saga, we'll find out what happens in next week's episode.

The rest of this episode was mainly fillers.

At a dinner party hosted by the "Thomsons", we were introduced to a recent convert to plural marriage and his two wives. Besides the creepy fact he found out about CP's form of  polygamy from chatting with an unseen man on the internet, he gives a toast that includes an unfortunate gesture to his 2nd wife who is old enough to marry and bear a child but not old enough to share a glass of wine, legally. Actually, we didn't need to know her age or that she was too young to drink, but it must have been important to him to mention it in his toast. Now he didn't remind me of a Warren Jeffs, but he did remind me of Winston Blackmore or even Willie Jessop. A creepy, faked gregariousness. I wonder why polygamy attracts these type of men?

Mama Rose Cawley survived her first day caring for 9 children under the age of 5. As we watched her struggle with kids seemingly in every nook and cranny of that house, something caught my eye. She was CLEANING. Frankly,  I would rather see her watching the children not busily cleaning the house. What if little Simon decided to give little Charlie a frontal lobotomy on the coffee table? Would she drop her cleaning rag in time to prevent a nasty accident? Or would she continue cleaning while yelling "Simon! Make sure you go through Charlie's right nostril, QUICKFAST!"   Even though she happily announced she made it through the first day, I began to wonder maybe Connie was right when she said 9 kids would be too much for Rose.

Finally, we find out that each week, CP Mike ventures into Colorado City in order to replenish his family's drinking water supply. It seems the Centennial Park's ground water is contaminated with radium. Since he can't afford the $100 a month to have water delivered to his home, once a week he travels to Colorado City's community water faucet to replenish his supply.

Now, we all know that Colorado City is not known to be very cordial to outsiders. So why would anyone with half a brain knowingly antagonize the goon squad that patrols and protects Colorado City? Yep, CP Mike would. You know what, I think the REAL reason the goon squad was taking pictures was because of all the cameras from the reality show. They could care less about former Brother Cawley. It just seems to me all of this was just so....silly. And those 3 containers provides drinking water for a family of 22 for one week? I don't think so. Hell, just pay the $100 for water delivery and be done with it. Sorry CP Mike, no sympathy from me!

Next week, the season finale!

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