Well my friends, we are here again. It’s December and Jesus Christ’s birthday is just around the corner. I know we usually don’t think of Christmas as a birthday party but every year the entire world celebrates the birth of the Christ (the savior of mankind for some of us). Some of you (possibly many of you) don’t even believe that Jesus was born on the 25th of December. I’ve heard he was born in April or simply Spring in general and that Christmas is just a replacement for the pagan rituals of the winter solstice. All those possibilities really don’t matter much to God. Catholics and Christians decided that December 25th is the day of Jesus’ birth and I think God is good with it. Besides, even if we found out that Jesus was born on June 4th we are not going to change from December 25th to June 4th. No matter how compelling any evidence could be.
Ok, we also know that the Three Kings (and their entourage) found Joseph, Mary and Jesus two years later and brought gifts. So, as a result of the Kings generosity, we will give gifts to friends and family forever on December 25th. Of course there is an abundance of good will towards men (and women) during this season. This is all great as far as I am concerned. I am a big fan of the holidays. I love Santa Claus, reindeer, Christmas trees, decorations, baked goods, holiday food etc.
That said let’s get to the point of my piece. As an audio engineer I inevitably have more work, more responsibility and I make more money during this time of year. There is a good chance that you have a similar experience during the Christmas season. I know many of you volunteer your efforts. So, you probably won’t be getting extra cash but you should receive an extra measure of appreciation from your churches. Of course there will be extra pressure during the season so I have a few suggestions to make your Christmas very merry.
1st; Make certain every single piece of gear you have is working properly. There is no doubt that you will be using more gear now. I realize that we should have all our equipment working perfectly at all times but in the worship world that is not always the case. So, check every mic cable, microphone, mic stand, snake channel etc.
2nd; Don’t over book yourself. That goes for all gigs, rehearsals, meetings and so on. If you have two rehearsals in one day, give yourself plenty of time between them. Also since most shows, parties and events usually happen on a Friday or Saturday, don’t book a rehearsal on those evenings. There is a chance that you can squeeze in a Saturday morning rehearsal but I will leave that up to you.
Lastly; you have got to take care of yourself now more than ever. I know you may go right from work to your church for that Christmas show rehearsal. Of course your average house of worship will supply piles of cookies, cakes and candies, plus gallons of coffee. But if you think you can skip dinner and just pound a half dozen sugar cookie snowmen (not to mention the coffee or energy drink) and stay healthy you are mistaken. Plan to stay well by drinking water, taking vitamins and avoiding replacing a meal with sweets. A stuffed head will mess with your hearing not to mention germs, viruses and diseases are just not fun.
That is about it on the advice. Except for the obvious suggestion to enjoy the holiday season. It’s the biggest birthday of the year after all.