This morning the pastor is meeting with a couple who’s interested in joining the church. I’m submitting attendance data and wishing for my weekend back. A nice, quiet Tuesday. The pastor’s door’s open, so I can overhear everything they’re saying. The wife inquires if I belong to anyone. This question is a uniquely small town one and one that’s also worded “is you any kin to somebody?” on occasion. Fair enough. The pastor explains who my parents are. Okay. I feel like the churchrat part of the conversation is over. Good.

Then the wife says I always see her alone on Sunday mornings so I wondered.

The pastor explains my parents go to the early service. I add, shouting from the next room, that if God had wanted me to attend early church He’d never let it be at 8:30 in the morning. Everyone chuckles. The churchrat part of the conversation must be over. Right?

Alas.

The pastor adds for no apparent reason that I’m single but have a friend I bring around to church sometimes, a fella.

She’s says this kid, a good looking kid, isn’t her boyfriend. But I really don’t believe her. And then he chuckled. But you know how girls are.

I’m still sitting here with my mouth gaping. Did the pastor just speculate about my personal life to people who are pretty much strangers? And then suggest to those same strangers that I’m probably lying? And top it off with some sort of vague misogyny?

If I were lying–and I am not: I do have a reasonably good grasp on who I am and am not dating–I would do so in hopes of preventing people from chatting about my life like it’s some episode of Friends. Or whatever show it is people follow and chat about these days.

Hey, middle aged people, if you wonder why young people don’t go to your church–this is a reason why. You largely treat the young and/or single like they’re television shows for your entertainment and not like they’re people.

What do you say we listen to some Sleater-Kinney until we feel less annoyed? Good idea. Let’s do it.

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