Oct 22 2005


Published by at 2:44 pm under Gratitude

I’ve been attending the Agape International Spiritual Center for several years now and have volunteered my humble services, such as they are, to the audio and video teams. For a good long while I was working on Wednesday nights, helping with audio set-up, and assisting the sound engineer who was located on a balcony at the back of the sanctuary. During the service, this consisted of setting up and tearing down mics for soloists, conveying messages via wireless clearcom headset to the engineer, and generally making sure that things ran smoothly. Although I enjoyed this work a great deal, and especially loved the wonderfully talented musical artists, I felt that my absence from our happy home mid-week was at odds with my commitment to being a good husband and step-dad. So, I gave up that aspect of my service.

More recently, I decided to reactivate my efforts there and found that the early Sunday service wasn’t too impactive on my family time. I leave around 6:15 Am and return around 11:30. Because the audio team is fairly well covered on Sundays, I decided to work on the video team. So, I became a camera operator.

Since then, behind the scenes, the higher ups have been working on a huge change. They completely reinvented the audio system, switching from a low-end mackie board to a high-end all digital touring board built by Digidesign. Also, they decided to move the mixing desk downstairs. So, the entire process began on Thursday. First, the new hardware was installed. All the outboard gear was racked up and stashed in a new secret equipment closet under the stage. In addition to setting up all the new stuff, all the old gear in the balcony needed to be unracked and carted downstairs to be inventoried and documented for sale on Ebay. New wiring needed to be run, as the band was shifted from one side of the stage to the other. In other words, it was a huge job.

I received an email a week or so ago, asking if I could help. I replied to the head engineer, John Potoker, that I’d be happy to help. Thursday I worked from 10 Am – 2:30 Pm, hauling gear. Friday, I worked from about 9 – 2, hauling gear and cleaning the contacts on audio cable snakes. Today, we had a video production meeting that ran from noon until about 1:45. I’d committed to meeting Shari (my beloved wife) at 2 (she had an art class nearby). Dan McNay, who does many things but mostly organizes the lighting, asked if anyone could stay and help him. I volunteered my 15 minutes, but he was very dismissive, so I started moving band gear into their new performance area. There were several others helping with various things, and Dan became very upset because nobody was helping him. As I was walking out, I said to Dan, very warmly, “take care.” He replied, quite sarcastically, “Thanks for your help.” It left a bad taste in my mouth.

Anyway, I’m back there again tomorrow morning to operate camera for the 1st service. I hope things have calmed down by then.

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