One of these happened in the spring of 1978. I had made a candle in the shape of a cake for a friend who helped run the house church. As she lit its wick and placed it in the centre of the table at which we ate lunch, my brother asked, “Who’s birthday is it?” I had a difficult time not roaring with laughter at his question. My disguised candle was obviously more convincing than I intended it to be.
At that same house church, Sister Roberta busily retrieved bread and sausage slices for us from her kitchen. After making sure everybody had something to eat and drink, she declared, “Now I’m going to eat, myself.” I couldn’t resist such a tempting straight line. “You’re going to eat yourself?” I exclaimed in mock astonishment. Everybody roared with laughter at the absurdity of my quip.
One Sunday after church, we had finished lunch and were deep in conversation. Bessie, an occasional at tender, remarked how hearing aids irritated her ear canal. When she mentioned that it was because the instrument was a foreign object, I quipped, “Yeah, made in Japan.” A couple of minutes passed as we rocked with laughter.
After one meeting, I told the congregants gathered around the kitchen table about a trick I played on the cat. Brother Herald, the minister at the house church, admonished, “you shouldn’t pester the cat like that.” I couldn’t resist that straight line either. “How should I pester him?” I quipped. Everybody groaned at that.
Brother Herald got me back once. “I see your big toe is getting better,” he said as he pointed at my feet. When I asked why, he said, “It’s coming out.” I hadn’t noticed that one of my socks had a hole in it and my toe was sticking out.
Then there was the incident of the sighing coffee maker. Each morning, Sister Roberta and Sister Eileen would start the coffee perking before getting ready for work. As they busied themselves, the machine made a sighing noise. Each woman thought the other was sighing until one morning when they were in the same room as the machine. When Sister Roberta told me why it made that sound, I couldn’t stop laughing for at least five minutes. The absurdity of both women thinking the other was sighing seemed deliciously zany.
Since the purpose of my How I Was Razed memoir was to tell how I went from cultism to Christianity, I didn’t include vignettes such as these. Nevertheless, the memoir is worth reading. Check out the Virtual Bookworm site for details.