Buttons and knobs

Spending much of my time in the sound booth at church, I am regularly engaged with vast amounts of technology. During the service, I mostly deal with our rather large sound board (aka analog mixing console), along with a variety of effects and compressors.

In addition to the board, we have an intercom system that allows me to talk over headset to other folks in the sound booth, folks in the other room, or folks in our band room/green room, and a talkback mic so I can talk to the band through their in-ear monitors. I play pre- and post-service music from my laptop, and use my iPhone to keep track of various timers throughout the service.

The ubiquity of technology in the booth necessarily results in more buttons and knobs than one could shake a colloquial stick at (although the board alone merits its own stick shaking in the buttons/knobs category). Among those who visit the booth, several different people like to pretend to (or sometimes literally) mess with the buttons and knobs. My favorite gesture is one in which someone moves both hands wildly, palms down, inches above the board, as though furiously spreading a deck of card about a tabletop.

While there is much to be said about an extensive (and even overwhelming) use of technology in any setting, much less, worship, that’s not the point of this post. It’s also not the point that the buttons and knobs can be very stressful at times (and they can), nor is it to confess that I don’t know what 25% of the buttons and knobs actually do (I may or may not).

Ooooh, pretty! Props to Worship Pastor who took this picture and made it the wallpaper on my very first iPhone.

The point is that there are a lot of buttons and knobs. Some of them are pretty and colorful. Further, they are clearly appealing. But most importantly, messing with them can be a whole lot of fun.

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