Have you ever felt like you were on display for several hours at a time? I have. It's happened every Sunday for the past year. My weekly Sunday schedule is as follows:
10:20 Choir practice. This is the time where I absolutely slaughter the music in front of me while the choir members graciously overlook my lack of talent. I've been in choirs where the pianist would apologize for the one or two missed notes, stating that it was the first time seeing the music. I, on the other hand, practice for several weeks, hit most of the notes wrong, and glare at the music at if the fault were the music's and not my own.
11:00 Sacrament meeting. I wave my arm in time to 3 or 4 songs while most members of the congregation stare into their hymnbooks and sing. There are also a few people in the congregation that stare at me and don't sing at all. One or two of them stare in a fairly creepy manner, so I avoid looking at them.
12:20-12:30 Singing time with Jr. Primary. I teach songs to 3-8 year old kids. About half of them just stare at me, but are eager to volunteer to hold visual aids.
12:30-1:00 Sharing time with Jr. Primary. There are generally a couple of songs for me to wave my arm to during this time.
1:05-1:45 Repeat the last two things with the 9-12 year old kids.
1:45-2:00 Closing exercises. We sing opening, welcome, birthday, choice, reverence, Article of Faith, and closing songs as part of everything else that goes on. If there is extra time we sing some more.
There is extra fun when the choir or children perform in sacrament meeting. If the choir is up I move from my seat, wait until the choir is in place, sit at the piano (I block the choir members from getting to their places if I sit down first), and butcher the song while they sing. If the kids are performing I get off the stand while they get one, lead them, then go back up to the stand to sit in my seat. I feel like the ward gets tired of seeing me. I don't mind being so involved, it's just that sometimes I feel like I'm hosting a variety show.
I mention all these things because this Sunday will have a lot of participation on my part. There won't be any choir practice (hallelujah), but the kids are performing and the congregation will be singing more. A lot more. Aside from the regular 4 songs it looks like we have another four or five. I'm waiting to find out if I will be asked to accompany a flute piece (I was told it was a possibility, but I haven't gotten a phone call on it yet). Finally, I was asked to give an estimate on how long it would take to sing six of the songs I mentioned before. About sixteen minutes, ten seconds if anyone's counting. Maybe they'll broadcast it if I learn to tap dance.