- Well it is 4:00 a.m. in the morning and I can't sleep, so might has well write.
Everything at bethel is seniority........"How long have you been here?" If you wanted a better room you need some seniority, rooms would go up on a bid system. If you had more time in, then another guy, and a room went up for bid, you got it. If you were a new boy, and all your friends were new boys, it could be a year or two before you got a decent room and 10 years to get a room with its own bathroom, pre towers days. There were 2 man rooms, 3 man rooms, 4 man rooms, and 7 man rooms.........everything from a 7 man room in the ghetto, the 129 building, to a luxury apartment in its own building (like the good Doctor Dickson got). I don't have a problem with a system like that, a system that rewards seniority and education.
Oooppps, did I say education......Yes, I guess I said it..........Remember at the time......"higher education" was HIGHLY DISAPROVED of (you can tell from my spelling in these threads) and after high school, there was only ONE thing to do and that was to pioneer. We only had a few years left before 1975 and Armageddon and we didn't need NO stinking education, we needed to save as many people as possible! A couple of people I knew, when to college and got so much guilt and SHIT for it, you wouldn't believe it. Of course now the society will say they never discouraged higher education….bull shit!
The society made it hard on people, because "the society" knows the DEATH of any religion is education and knowledge! So that is why most of the JWs today, in their 50's and 60's and 70’s are blue collar workers. No need for a good job Armageddon is coming.
You were a real rebel if you went to college, back then. Greg Chase was my press operator on "HOE 10" after bethel he went to college to be a chiropractic physician. He told me years later, that when he was going to college, they hated him in his local KM, how dare he try and make something of himself. Why can’t you be happy like us in a janitorial business? However after he got out of school, different story, "The Brothers" called him DR. Chase..........they loved him....they wanted him to go back to bethel to be their in house chiropractor. They flew him and his wife back to New York and wined and dined them both. They offered him a very nice "comp package" and luxury apartment if he would just come back. He said "NOPE".
Sooooooooo........at bethel you were REWARDED for not listening to them about getting a "higher" education.........they treated you better and gave you more respect. You got a better room, and a better job! They actually treated you like a real person. Guys would come to bethel with a degree, (they went to school while I was pioneering) do you think they put them in the bindery? Nope, they got a great office job, no machines for them.
The light came on for me. The first glue of the "double standard" in the Lord's house and there are many! The say one thing but do something different deal. Those wonderful "unwritten rules and laws." As they say if it looks like shit and smells like shit, and taste like shit, it COULD possibly just be.......
Sorry, I got side tracked again. Back to the Bethel rooms. Working in the Laundry I got to see into all the rooms there, except Knorr's, you had to be Jesus to enter there. There are some really nice ones too, most of the rooms in the 107 and 124 buildings were dormitory style, with one women's and one man's bathroom on each floor. That’s why it took so much seniority to get a room with a bath there wasn't many of them back then. Plus they watched you like a hawk in the 124, 107 and 119. It seemed like that most of the tight asses lived in the 124 and 107, though there was plenty of cool guys mixed in too.
Then the society bought the Towers Hotel. They opened up 3 floors for bid. GREAT rooms all with their own bathrooms. If you had a year or more, you could get in. You would have thought everyone would have wanted them, but since the hotel was full of worldly people, most of the tight asses stayed were they were. I was one, of the first people in the Towers, room T 211. I didn't have the seniority to get a room, but a guy on my table did, Steve H, and he wanted a new roommate.....which brings me to my next subject, ROOM MATES.
Hey! There are all types..........and God bless them all. But some of them could make your life a living hell. It wasn't unusual for a newer guy there to bunk with and old timer, but most of the time it was someone you knew, you either worked with, or went to the same KH with. When you were new you didn't have a choice and you could get anyone.
My old pioneer partner Roy Baty come to bethel about 6 months after me. When he got there he was so self-righteous, he made me sick, he reminded me of ME when I first got there. I told him "I don't want to be around you, now Roy, come back and we'll talk again in 6 months"
Poor Roy got off to a bad start, they put him in a room in the 124 with Eugene Alcorn, a black "brother" from Detroit, with a real attitude. ROY hadn't even been there a couple of weeks and got a taste of "bethel Justice".......It seems he and his roommate Eugene got into a fight over the radio one night. Roy wanted if off at 11:00 p.m. and turn it off................. Eugene got up and turn it on...........Roy got up and turn it off............Eugene turned it on.......you get the idea. Words were said and in the brawl, that followed, the sink in the room got busted. Now most guys would cover for each other. Instead, Eugene went to the bethel office the next morning and told "the brothers" that, his white roommate didn’t like black people and wouldn't let him listen to his radio and beat him up, that is why the sink was busted. I never did like Eugene.
They hauled Roy in to the Bethel office. How it works at bethel is whoever gets there FIRST with the story, usually wins...Pretty much like the KH. The reasoning is, only the righteous one would naturally report the behavior of the unrighteous one. So by the time Roy got there, the decision was already made. Welcome to the Bindery Roy.
You really didn’t want "the Brothers" to know your name at bethel. Once your name got out there for any reason, once you got a "REP" you were screwed. "OH yes.....I've seem to have heard or your name, before brother ’Trouble maker’. We have a machine just for you.” You really wanted to be the man with no name a.k.a.THX-1138. Just do your time and get the hell out of there.
I don't know what to say about Steve H.........my first roommate in a 2 man room, except he kind of creeped me out. I wanted out of my 7 man room badly and he was my ticket out. He had all the mannerisms of an NPG (non practicing gay).....and there were plenty of those there too and there were a few that were practicing too. There were guys who loved the fact that there were 1300 19-23 year olds guys and few women at the Lord's house. Don't get me wrong! I love gays NOW, but I 'm speaking from my mind set of 1972. This guy had way too much clinginess for me and way too much famine mannerisms for me. He would say "So what are WE doing today?"........."I don't know....what ARE we doing today?"....sorry Charlie.
If you weren't Gay or and NPG at bethel, you were a homophobia...........I knew some bethelities who beat the shit out of some gay guys in "the Heights" one night just for the hell of it. AH the love.
There was this one new boy that got jumped walking to the squib building from the 124, by 2 thugs. It guess he was a black belt before coming into the borg. He kick their asses one guy was dragging the other guy back to their car and begging him to stop the beating. He went to George Couch Bethel home overseer, the next day to turn himself in, George said don't worry about it. He was our hero, we loved him.