Tuesday, September 1, 2009

The G.S.E.: a reprisal and a musing

So last Sunday we re-visited Church B, the PCA church. This time we stayed a bit after the service, talked to the pastor briefly and actually filled out a visitor's card. While we were chatting with the pastor, *she* came walking up. Crazy church-lady. You know who I'm talking about. That one person in every church who has a radar for visitors, and swoops upon them cackling madly. She usually has that air of dottiness, arms full of papers and choir robes, filled with tons of helpful and completely useless information which she doles out at random, and with auctioneer speed. She's tenacious, convinced that she has Just The Place for you to fit in (and Just The Thing to tell you about which you *should* be deeply interested).

"Hi!! Are you visitors? Oh, we are SO HAPPY you are here! Tell me your names!"
"Hello. I'm Bob* and this is my wife Sue*."
"I'm GEORGETTE*! You look like really smart kids. What do you do?"
"I'm a librarian, and he teaches at the Local University."
"OOOH. What do you TEACH?"
"Philosophy" (Surprisingly, this doesn't phase her one bit.)
"Ah-Ha! Well, I'm like a honey bee, I know where all the good things are, and I hop around from place to place. If you want to talk about philosophy, you should meet Ben*. And YOU should know that we have a library AND a bookstore here. Have you seen them?"
"Um, no."
(We start looking for a way to escape, but folks seem to have disappeared into the woodwork. Unsurprisingly, it appears that everyone is avoiding this little area of the foyer now. That's when we KNEW we'd met the Crazy Church-lady.)
"If you're a teacher, you would be interested in my project about the Bible in sign language so everyone in the world can read it regardless of whether you can read!"
(She rambles on about this for several minutes, both of us looking a bit dazed and bewildered, casting sideways glances at one another asking mentally "did YOU say anything about sign language??!?)
The philospher tries to be polite, and says "I'm sure it will be successful... I think it's time..."
She cuts him off. "Do you have a pen? Write this website down. Go to it when you get home and tell me what you think!" (He dutifully writes down a long, complicated email address on a scrap of paper she handed him.)
"You know, all teachers are honey bees, don't you? So I bet you're a honey bee too, likes a little bit of everything?"
(At this point I'm actively looking for a way to run for the door, and laughing hysterically at the philosopher being compared to a honey bee. ::snort::)
She looks at me.. "I see your eyes glazing over!" (I smile.) She rambles on for another five minutes or so anyway, and we finally escape, only barely.

(*Names have been changed to protect the innocent.)

Now, I know there's not much anyone can do about folks like this. And we certainly won't hold it against this particular congregation, because there's one in EVERY church anyway. But as visitors, how do you escape without hurting feelings of complete strangers who are just trying to be friendly in the only way they know how (but are usually only succeeding in scaring the visitors half to death or offending them in some way)? We're not angry or upset, just amused. Honey bee. Wahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!

No comments: