Happy New Year’s Eve, pigeons! How will you be spending NYE? Get any invitations from parishioners? Those are always complicated, aren’t they? On one hand, you’d love to stop by. On the other hand, you want to be sure to be out of the room by midnight to avoid any weird kissing/champagne-induced loooong hugs that someone might regret in 2014 (and that someone had better not be you!).
I suggest that you thank everyone for their kind invitations, avoid the party scene like the plague, and make some calls on New Year’s Day when everyone is ostensibly sobered up and you can bestow a blessing for the new year. Get a plate of hoppin’ john, eat some cornbread and steer clear of worries about what to wear that’s appropriately clerical and not “Oh my god, who invited the guy in the collar to our NYE blow-out?”
Many moons ago when PeaceBang was just a wee young minister she heard a slightly soused church leader at a woman’s gathering confess that she invited the senior pastor to her New Year’s Eve gatherings in the hopes of just “happening” to be strategically placed next to him at midnight so she could lay a big juicy smooch on him.
It was at this same party, where the gals threw back glass after glass of wine and PeaceBang sat quietly nursing a club soda that the talk turned to sex (of course), and when PB set her face into an expression we might dub “Friendly and Supportive Therapist” and kept her mouth well shut, one of the gals eventually turned to her and giggled, “Why so quiet, Vicki? ARE YOU A VIRGIN??” There was much tittering.
I smiled enigmatically while thinking to myself, “Aw mah gah. I love these women but get me out of here.”
It was one of the most eye-opening moments of my new life as a minister. I was astonished that, even into a fourth or fifth glass of wine, any educated modern woman would say that to me. It made me realize how truly Other clergy are, even within liberal faith communities.
The point is, pidgies, I make it a general rule to avoid social situations that are bound to be boozey. I don’t need to overhear any more confessions about lay people trying to catch their pastor in a clinch or to be subjected to any more slurring inquiries about my sexual history. Stay off the icy roads, and avoid accidents both automotive and social!
A clink of my glass of chilled prosecco to your libation of choice at midnight, loveys! Here’s to you and yours! Here’s to all of us and all of ours!