So this fellow from the congregation my wife goes to (and I am inactive from for almost 6 months)
is moving to where the need is greater. He's an MS, totally indoctrinated loyal JW. He's not an
ass-kisser, but otherwise does whatever they ask of him, so they take advantage of that and keep
asking for more, more, more. Anyway, he has tried to be my friend, and doesn't mention the
inactive status. I like him a lot. I don't plan to stay close as a friend, but he keeps trying.
He had this going away party this weekend at a restaurant. It was a few hours after the meeting at
the Kingdom Hall. People from the cong. and many of his JW friends from all over the area were
invited. I and the wife were invited. Even though I know lots of dubs from the cong. will be there,
I really enjoyed seeing dubs at a recent wedding reception, so I decided to go. (I had a thread about
the wedding reception- how the dubs didn't talk dub talk, most young ones were planning or going to
college, older ones returning to college, former Bethelites not even wanting to pioneer.)
So we arrive at the party a bit on the early side. There's already about 10 people there, but many
more on the way. One of the cong. elders is there. He looks surprised to see me- surprised not in
a "HEY, GOOD TO SEE YA" way, but more like, "OH, OnTheWayOut is here, what should I say?"
The host sees us to our own area of the restaurant separated from the rest of the crowd. People
Eventually, another cong. elder arrives. He comes with the out-of-town elder who was the speaker
and the speaker's family. There were other dubs with them (all from the cong.) and the arriving elder
says, "Hello OnTheWayOut, it is good to see you." Next he talks to the first elder who was already
there. The two of them talk into each other's ears in that "Keep it secret" way. Well, the both of them
go off to talk to the host while everyone else keeps saying hello to everyone, enjoying themselves.
I didn't know the speaker, so I said hello to him and his family.
The two elders come back, and ask the speaker and everyone that came with them to move out of the
area to another table. You could see the table, but it was clear across the restaurant. One of the
elders explains that they came here to "host" the speaker, so they will be sitting at another table where
they can talk.
Well, this is not a restaurant on their beaten path. They clearly came here to be with the large party. The
MS is just arriving and he asks what's wrong. They whisper something to him, but he says, "Okay, well we
are all here if you change your mind." I am no idiot. While the rest of the large party didn't seem to
wonder or question them, I know what just happened. They didn't "shun" me, but they didn't want to "join"
me. They didn't want to say anything, because I am not marked or anything. They left the party to go sit
elsewhere until after everyone had eaten.
Once the food was served and eaten, the rank and file from their party came back to the party. The
speaker (who didn't know my situation) and his family came over. The elder's wives came over. The
two elders by themselves looked silly, so they came back to the party. I guess they solved their little
dilema. They didn't "eat" with me, which could question their status as elders (in their minds anyway).
We all had a good time, many of the cong. rank and file saying they "missed me" but not pushing too hard.
I am sure there will be an elder's meeting this week and it may be proposed that something has to be done.
I don't think the cong. would totally recognize the need to "mark" me, but I wouldn't really miss them if they
did. The MS who invited me never seemed to care what the elders concern was. I am going to miss him,
but if he wasn't leaving, I am sure they would have to lecture him.