Playing Church

Religion alert.

If you are a Catholic, or even an Episcopalian, you will get this immediately. If you are neither, well, it’s all innocent fun.

The coffee shop across the street started selling “nostalgia” candy this week–Boston Baked Beans and the like. I couldn’t help myself. I bought a roll of Necco Wafers. (For those of you unfamiliar with this treat–think flavor and texture of Valentine’s Day candy hearts, only round and flat–and better tasting.)

Members of the above-mentioned religions, you know where this is going, yes?

An aside: I am a candy freak. I work in a restaurant, surrounded by food, but nary a bite to eat because breaks are a rare commodity and six hours without moving from my podium’s realm is not an unusual stint.

To get through the day, after multiple cups of coffee, I down candy. Lots of it. Nerds for breakfast, great. Junior Mints for lunch, of course. Gummy anything, all the time (are the worms, bears, etc. actually digestable?).

The waiters, other hosts–everyone, in fact–know who to ask when they need an energy fix and the Red Bull has run dry. More often than not, I just hand the stuff out to my co-workers between customers.

The Neccos were a huge hit.

“You know what we used to do with these?” asked a young red-haired server. Of course I knew!

Play church. Play communion.

One of my managers, who makes no bones about his Irish heritage, chimed in immediately as well.

After we’d had a good laugh about it, the manager and waiter dispersed, leaving me to my podium. And who should walk in?

I am NOT KIDDING. A priest–full collar and all–with two others, for lunch.

I almost choked. I also almost asked him if he knew about Necco Wafers. I didn’t, of course.

But seriously, there is a God, and he plays church with the Neccos.






8 responses to “Playing Church”

  1. Yvonne Avatar

    That was classic!! Passed along to all my “devout Catholics”!!

  2. Paul Avatar

    My wife and I spent a week in Rome in November 2000. We visited St. Peter’s early on a foggy weekday morning — extra-early to ensure having an unobstructed view of Michaelangelo’s sculpture, “Pieta.” We’d skipped breakfast to get there by 7 a.m. and, as we toured the rest of the church (we’re Jewish, so it was a bit weird for us) we came upon one of the satellite worship places away from the main altar. Either the service had already taken place there or was scheduled to begin shortly, because there was a chalice filled with communion wafers resting on the cloth-covered table, behind a low railing. My wife says, “I’m hungry; I think I’ll just grab a few of those crackers,” knowing full well what they were. I managed to dissuade her, more because I was afraid of getting tossed out than for any religious reason. Her parting comment as we went off in search of a cappuccino place — “I’ll bet you they’re made by the same group of Jews who manufacture matzoh.” Could be, I suppose.

  3. Altar Boy Avatar
    Altar Boy

    Hey Paul, was that supposed to be funny?

    You and your wife need to get out more, maybe learn a little about other religions. That you’d find being in a Catholic church ‘weird’ speaks volumes; I think most people would find being in a house of worship of a religion not their own to be interesting, enlightening and maybe even educational. But weird? I doubt it.

    FYI, consecrated hosts are never just left out like a bowl of candy. They don’t revert from the Body of Christ to unleavened bread just because the mass ends.

  4. heathen Avatar

    Altar Boy, get off your high horse – I go to church every Sunday, and I think it’s weird. I imagine a temple would seem even weirder. Interesting, enlightening, educational, and weird. And why would he lie about the crackers?? [DELETED].

  5. Restaurant Gal Avatar
    Restaurant Gal

    Whoooa there big fella! Opinions welcome. Name calling not.
    And lighten up a bit folks–this is about Necco Wafers!

  6. heathen Avatar

    Sorry RG, I’ll behave!

  7. karilyn Avatar

    paul….. very funny!
    but as a catholic i would have taken a fistful of them…… you gotta be practical, restuarants in rome are expensive and ir would have been a free snack

    before my first communion we had to practice with corn flakes to get the suck to the top of your mouth sensation……

  8. Liz Avatar

    I couldn’t help but smile after reading the first paragraph because I immediately remembered using Necco wafers when I was getting excited about holy communion. I think I always like the yellow ones best.

    Just came across your blog recently so I’m back tracking but I enjoy every entry 🙂