"Preach the gospel at all times, if necessary use words." - St. Francis of Assisi

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Asleep at the keys

My worst fears were realized this past Sunday at church. Well, I guess that would be my second worst fears since I did remember to wear pants, but it was still a traumatic happening. Bear in mind that I have been playing keyboards in church services for over forty years, so I guess this day was bound to come. My Sundays have always involved being up before daylight, trying to focus on hand/eye coordination before normal people have had their first cup of coffee, and being “on” for two or three services before lunch. This past week was no different.

During the first service, I had no problems. Our Pastor preached yet another message that stirred the heart and kept me awake flipping between scriptures and writing notes from his message. However, when it came time to close our eyes for the end of the service time of invitation, my brain seemed to like the “eyes closed” part and sent some signals out to the rest of my body that maybe it was time for a wee little snooze. “No, No,” I remarked to myself, “you’ve got another hour or so to go. Wake up and get back to the music at hand.” As the second service began, the snooze signals began to expand into “time for a full-fledged nap” alert. I kept biting the insides of my cheeks and pinching my legs during the music (not easy to do and looks quite strange to those watching, I’m sure), in an effort to wake up. “Okay, Jimmy. Just leave during the sermon, find something to drink, and walk around so you’ll wake up before time to play again.” Unfortunately, my stupid legs didn’t go along with it, so there I sat during the sermon…in the middle of the platform….in front of the entire congregation….with the entire choir behind me….still biting and pinching (you should see the bruises).

Finally, the closing time came and I began to play quietly as the Pastor extended a time of decision. The congregation had their eyes closed and heads bowed during prayer, as did I, yet mine was for a different reason. All of a sudden as I played (AS I PLAYED) with my head bowed and eyes closed, I fell asleep. My head fell forward like a two-ton weight and some strange snort came out of my mouth and nose that jerked me awake before I crashed into the keys creating some horrid chord. I was far too shocked to even imagine that anyone may be watching, so I put on the most spiritual face possible, finished the song, and raced to my getaway car.

My plans are now to buy a small coffee pot to keep behind the musicians area, to have an energy drinks in the insulated cup I used to bring water in, to NEVER close my eyes again during a prayer, and to not bite my cheeks anymore. I’ve been talking very strangely ever since. So, I’m hoping despite the time change this coming weekend and losing (yet) another hour of sleep, my luck is better for this Sunday. Hopefully God got a good chuckle out of this adventure and will give me a slight zap at the pertinent times.

On a side note for those of you keeping score….I bought two new fish this week, both are now dead. It seems that over that past month, I’m batting about seven for seven (sigh).

And for today my friends, this has been the gospel according to Jimmy.


At 11:57 AM, Blogger Jan's Funny Farm said...

Sorry, Jimmy, I can imagine that was horribly embarrassing! But it's funny the way you wrote it. I hope your new efforts to stay awake will work in the future. They sound much better than beating yourself up. But since we're human, exhaustion can be hard to battle.


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