Newark, New Jersey - The "followers of Jesus" of "The Pub" are deeply concerned about their teacher, Peter Trout. Trout, affectionately known as "Trouty," founded "The Pub" seven years ago when he and a group of friends began meeting at Brantly's Pub in downtown Newark on Friday nights for discussions about life, love and the Bible. They were small at first, with just seven or eight people coming, but within a years time the group had grown to twenty, and then to fifty. Two years later Brantly's Pub closed, and the group took the initiative to buy the building. By that time, Trout had become the de facto leader of the group, having completed three years of college, studied Yoga for several years, and having backpacked Europe for two summers in a row. And so Trout and his group simply renamed the building "The Pub" and continued meeting on Friday nights for several hours, with the only difference being that now the meetings were B.Y.O.B. (bring your own beer).
All seemed to be going well for the group. The Pub's "followers of Jesus" had grown to almost 200, and the "family" had finally managed to acquire a liquor license so that they could serve first timers who didn't have anything to drink. But during the last Friday meeting in July, something happened that now has The Pub's "followers" worried that their favorite hangout spot along with their cherished leader is going to fall apart.
The trouble began the night of July 27th. The Pub had booked the group Allison Chains, a 90's grunge/alternative cover band to play for their evening "hang out time." The group played for almost two hours and then Trout stood up to speak. It was then that, "members" say, he just "lost it."
"I don't know what happened with the man" said one 'member' who simply calls himself 'The Parable.' "Trouty got up and started talking all this weird stuff about being obedient to the Bible and actually basing everything we believe on it. He then went into some tirade about our mouths reflecting what's in our heart. Everyone was just standing around really bummed out. I didn't know if I was hearing things right, I mean, I had had about 4 pints by that time, so maybe I just was confused, or maybe I just was confused, or confused or something, like something."
Trout spoke for almost a solid hour, during which time he cited numerous commentaries and quoted the Puritans. After he finished he stepped off of the stage for about thirty seconds only to return a with a completely different demeanor.
"When Trouty got done everyone was totally in shock" said Heather Lilly. "But then he got back on the stage and started going into this impassioned plea for people to keep an open mind and not to set fixed standards. He shouted, slamming on the Puritans and was cussing them out. That was the Trouty we all knew and loved."
When members of the congregation approached Trout after the service he responded totally dumbfounded to what they were talking about.
"I ask Trouty if everything he had said was some kind of joke or something and he said 'like what are you talking about man?' " Said The Parable. "It was like he didn't even know what had happened."
Ever since that fateful Friday night at The Pub, the "followers" have watched on a weekly basis as Trout has seemed to have developed a two-for-one personality, constantly having an "emerging conversation" with himself.
"We're all so worried about Trouty" said Lilly. "The other day I called him up and one minute he's cussing himself out, and the next minute he's preaching to himself about the need for sound Biblical doctrine. I just don't know what we're going to do. We all love Trouty so much, and we'd hate to see him turn orthodox or something."
Several of the "followers of Jesus" at The Pub have recently come together in an effort to approach Trout to help him. But the "followers" are uncertain of what lies ahead.
"When we go to talk to him, we don't know which Trouty we're going to get" said The Parable. "It's all going to depend on which one of him is talking during his inner conversation. Our hope is to interrupt that conversation at just the right time."