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Thursday, January 3, 2013

Mormon World Records 4

by Seattle Jon (bio)

Paul Skousen might not be the best known of the Skousens, but he did pen The Skousen Book of Mormon World Records. This is my tribute series to his good work. Previous Mormon World Records here.

QWho is/was the tallest Mormon man?
A: Shawn Bradley, who stands 7 feet 6 inches, is the tallest living Latter-day Saint, and possibly the tallest LDS ever. He was a very highly recruited basketball star from Emery High School in Castle Dale, Utah, and signed on with BYU where his reputation as a rebounder and shot-blocker followed him through a successful first season. After serving a mission, he signed on with the Philadelphia 76ers.

QWho is/was the shortest Mormon man?
A: Billy Barty, well known on TV and in movies, was 3 feet 9 inches tall. He served as an assistant ward clerk in his Studio City Ward, Hollywood, and worked to stop discrimination against short people. He joined the Church in 1963, two years after marrying his LDS wife from Idaho. He appeared in more than 150 motion pictures and hundreds of TV shows, beginning in the 1930s. Some of his most famous starring roles included the movies Willow, Legend and UHF [he didn't need no stinkin' badgers].

QWhat is the most widely circulated LDS joke?
A: In 1989, a story was submitted to Reader's Digest's "Life in the United States" by Kathy Skousen [related to Paul?] of South Jordan, Utah, River Ridge 3rd Ward. The editors called the local school to verify its accuracy, and then published it in their July 1989 issue that went to 16 million subscribers. Over the years the joke has spread to no fewer than 85 web sites with funny variations on the sex, age and setting. Here is the original joke:

For Drug Awareness Day, the school asked each child to bring a white t-shirt so an anti-drug slogan could be ironed onto it. After a frantic search, I found my daughter's only clean shirt, which already had something on the front. The back was blank, however, and I sent her off with it. When she came home that afternoon, she proudly displayed the shirt. The front of it proclaimed, "Families Are Forever." On the back was, "Be Smart, Don't Start!"

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