Thursday, July 9, 2009

The Boredom Factor

So, there I was... at the first "coffee and Connections meeting of our youth for the Summer. This is a strictly voluntary group to meet and maintain while Wednesday night youth activities are suspended for the Summer, and the youth pastor forgot his lesson plan for a little devotional. As it happened, I was carrying a copy of Peggy Parson's book So, There I Was... which I was planning to give to my mentoree at cost. SO.... I informed the kids that the youthworker's contract, page 65, Section 23, paragraph 64, subparagraph g specifically required that "meetings of the youth shall each and severally maintain a minimum boredom factor of 10%." I told them that I was therefore obligated to read a passage to them about spiritual discipline. Groans. A couple of heads hit the table. Dauntlessly, I turned to the first chapter and started reading. Ears twitched when I read, "I am mildly allergic to the entire concept of discipline. It smacks of work." Heads popped up when I read, "It is the Discipline of Spiritual Adventure." I freely admit that I skipped part of the description of that spiritual discipline as youth work really is the fine art of balancing what kids need to know and what they will hold still for, and I have high hopes that they will come back to that, but I read the example, using my best Texas drawl for "Our Lady of Junction," and pronouncing "deaf" quite properly as "deef."

The youth pastor later informed me that the boredom factor for that meeting was woefully inadequate. This is NOT my fault, it's Peggys.


  1. Yes! *pumps fist in air*

    Peggy... she is just the right amount of too much, isn't she? *huge grin*

  2. Well, Friends, that's the best laugh I've had all week. Nate, the in vivo editing was entirely appropriate. I truly wish I could heard you read it.

    And God in God's wisdom wove back in a loose thread. Back in the 90s I was scheduled to speak to Medford Friends Youth on my Domestic Violence Prevention Tour. The at-that-time YP invited me, then the elders gently un-invited me - my rep I presume. So reading them my little story is pleasing to me some how. A voice still heard in NWYM, even if from outside their windowsill.


    Cat- Jeez - that comment could earn you a free book in the next "about the author" contest!


  3. That sounds like a great time, and you and Peggy saved the day!