Once upon a time, at my second radio job, I knew a guy named Tom. Tom worked in sales, and he was a pretty good guy. He was always trying to talk me into going to his church. (It’s worth pointing out that, at the time, A. I had hair, and B. I had hair down to the small of my back. This being the zip-fly of the Bible belt, I guess that was some kind of visual cue for some people to think I really need to be going to church. And probably cutting my hair and getting a job. You damn hippie. Anyway.)
It never seemed to dawn on Tom that one of the big obstacles to me doing that was that I was working at the station and making sure the commercials he sold were produced and aired every Sunday morning.
He came in one Sunday afternoon to make prodigious unofficial use of the station’s photocopiers, and once again started in on what I called his holy sales pitch, again neglecting to note that I was at the station every Sunday morning.
I’m going to completely destroy the surprise of the punchline of this story at this point by assuring you that Tom is a good guy, and I’m sure he meant “jumping pews.”
He wrapped up his lecture about me needing to go to church with the following statement, topped with an eyebrow-raising Spoonerism:
“Don’t worry, we’re not some kind of crazy church. We’re not rolling in the aisles and speaking tongues and pumping Jews –”
I raised my eyebrows at him and bit my tongue almost in half to keep from busting out laughing.
Tom looked back at me, his mouth half-open, realizing that perhaps, on this occasion, his sales pitch had just taken – as appropriate a use of this phrase as I can think of – one hell of a bad turn. Then he clammed up and walked away. I almost felt bad for him.
He never brought the subject up again. 😆