Confessions of a Youth Group Kid

BuzzFeed offers 33 ways you know you were a youth group kid and a lot of them look very familiar (though some of the specific examples in my case would be older). Jessica Bluemke picks out her favorites, including this one:


That’s way too new for me. Back in my day (yes, I actually used that line; shut up and get off my lawn), it would be this one:


And this one:

15. You went on a mission trip to Mexico, Guatemala, Haiti, Ghana, Nicaragua, Uganda, or Venezuela.

Appalachia, actually. Harlan County, Kentucky. Made out with a girl there for the first time (not a local, a girl from the other youth group that was there with us). And I distinctly remember hearing both Ozzy Osbourne and Simon and Garfunkel on that trip.

Jessica asks for youth group stories and I have a good one. When I was 14 or 15, the youth group had a newspaper drive and I was there helping. Someone brought in paper bags stuffed with porno magazines and that’s how I got my first one. Hid it in my room until I went to college, after which my stepmother found it, clutched her pearls tightly and demanded that my dad burn it in the backyard.

My big memory of that church and that youth group was that the shining star of the group was a kid named Bob Overlander. All the parents in the church loved Bob because he was an inveterate suck up. He could turn on the “I’m just such a good boy” charm like no other. He was also a raging asshole and a hypocrite who was having sex with at least two girls at school. My stepmother actually called me a few years ago to tell me that he had died (they still lived in the same town and it was in the paper), thinking that perhaps I would care. I didn’t.

"Yeah, like driving all those motherfucking snakes out of motherfucking Ireland!"

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