The Paps and Weno Show
To those who used to read H2O last year, and have seen this, apologies. It's another reheat.
Whereas for a period of about twenty years, I really didn't give Jehovah's Witnesses much of a thought, now since finding this site - and reading the posts most days - I find myself casting my mind back more often to the time when I was "in" and stuff which happened then.
The other day I remembered all about Paps and Weno. And it made me smile all over again.
Paps and Weno were two Elders in our congregation. We had, I don't know, only about 6 or 7 Elders in total , so between them these two took up a fair amount of Platform time.
John C. was "Paps" and Les P was "Weno". Their nicknames - which as far as I'm aware they never knew about - arose from their respective speaking styles, and mannerisms.
Paps was actually saying "Perhaps" , but that's the way he said it, and he said it in virtually EVERY sentence:
"Brothers, I wonder if - paps - you'd turn with me to 2nd Corinthians,
Chapter 3, and - paps - reading from verse 5... Jehovah here is - paps - giving us counsel which - paps - we should apply to our selves..."
And so on and - paps - so on.
Weno - of course - said "We Know" - and said it practically all the time.
"Well, We know, of course that Jehovah is guiding us in this time of the end, and we know that he has given us instruction in his word the Bible. Brothers, we know that we must listen to this wise instruction, because we know the end is ..."
There were a group of us pioneers in the congregation at that time. I
joined the group in 1970, and left it in 1974, and while I was in it
numbered between 4 and 6 (the makeup of the group churned over the years).
One of the things I remember was coming into the group all wide-eyed and innocent, and quickly learning the cynical group culture. The one big thing you learned pretty much straight off was how to cheat your time, making a call on a not-at-home early in the morning, going off to a café for an hour or two then doing some magazine route calls, walking around the shops, more route calls and counting the whole day.
The other big thing was taking the piss out of the Elders. Any mannerism or defect or mockable thing was latched on to and used in ruthless ridicule. Jon, the oldest pioneer (it was all young, single brothers) was the ringleader but I must admit, I was pretty good at this.
Hence we had Paps and Weno.
I remember sitting in the Willow café, over several cups of coffee,
laughing about how "The Paps and Weno Show" had gone the previous night.
Jon sometimes would keep count. "Well Paps went nuts last night! 61 times in a twenty-minute Instruction Talk! Unbelievable!"
Weno, in particular had a very distinctive, easily mimicked voice. We would order up coffee as Weno:
"We know we would like 4 coffees please and, well, we know that 3 of these should have milk, but we know that only 1 has sugar..." You had to be there, I suppose because I'm laughing at this even as I type, and I guess it won't look funny at all onscreen.
Oh, we kept it hidden from the regular publishers, of course - didn't want to "stumble anyone" after all. But, in fact, the secret nature of the mockery just reinforced the group identity all the more and made us feel superior to the ordinary publishers.
Remembering this got me to wondering... were we alone in this? Did anyone else make fun of "Those Reaching Out and Taking the Lead" in such a thoroughly reprehensible manner?
Anyone else remember anything similar?
When praying, one guy uses the word 'father' in just about every sentence only he pronounces it 'fodder'.
"Fodder, forgive us our sins, fodder, and help us, fodder to make to to our meetings, fodder."
Another one has the annoying habit of saying "We may say" with every other statement he makes:
"The congregation is like a wife, we may say., etc"
Each and everyone of us is apalled, each and everyone of us never heard the like. Each and everyone of us would like to protest at the insensitivity that you have thrust upon each and every one of us.
Each and every Englishman protesting.
Bring on the dancing girls!
I singled out Paps and Weno because of their endurance . Oh, sure –we had elders who had a brief flirtation – a crazy season – with one particular phrase or another….
I well remember when our then-PO went overboard on the phrase “…at the same time…” EVERY-bloody-THING seemingly was happening at the same time as everything else. “When we render sacred service to Jehovah then at the same time we prove Satan a liar” ... “ We, as true Christians study God’s Word the Bible and, at the same time, come to an accurate knowledge of the truth…”
We toyed with the idea of calling him “The Simultaneous Man” but it really wasn’t catchy enough , and besides, he lost interest after a few weeks. No endurance, you see.
Or another Elder, the Theocratic Ministry School Servant at the time, who had a brief, weeks-long infatuation with the construction “Why…how..”
“Why, how glad we can be that Jehovah’s Organisation….”
“Why, how marvellous to welcome so many to this weeks Public Talk!”
But Why-how just didn’t stand the test of time – no how.
But, Paps and Weno! They showed true Christian Perseverance! Yes, indeed, we know that – paps – they stayed faithful to their – paps – ridiculous verbal security blankets through years and years, with never a deviation. We know that this – paps – enduring steadfastness was - paps - the true mark of Watchtower-speak Greatness.
They’re probably still at it, even now. Way to go, (paps)
I'm laughing at this even as I type, and I guess it won't look funny at all onscreen.
Only if you're a lemming. Otherwise, it's funny as hell. I was laughing out loud.
Only someone who had spent a good number of their teen years listening to Cheese Cracker Men could have developed this type of wacky irreverent humor.
My hat's off to ya Dunc. We woulda had fun together.
Thanks for resurrecting this.
Only someone who had spent a good number of their teen years listening to Cheese Cracker Men ...
Absolutely! When I think about the vast amounts of wasted time - my best years - spent listening to this idiotic drivel, it makes me shake my head. At the time, of course, we were told it was all "Vital Life-Saving Unchanging Truth"
We would all have been better-off making up and handing out your Match-up cards.
Funny stuff, Duncan.
My X 'hovah friend, "Gomer" who still believes, used to say "you know" about a gazillian times in a talk. I used to sit and chuckle, and count how many times he said it. Finally, after one particular talk he gave, I told him that he said "you know" 68 times in that one talk!