My church job is amusing on many levels, but I gotta go with these as my Top 5 favorite things:
5. Plastic plants
Onstage there are a variety of plastic plants that 'lend color' to the stage . Other than that, they generally collect dust and get in everybody's way, showing up in a different place every week. I'm partially convinced the ficuses have gained sentience and are making diabolical plans.
4. Oreos, fishies and apple juice
In between services they set out a mountain of Oreos and a little dixie cup army with apple juice or cheese fishies. Very handy for 'on-the-go' snacking between playing.
3. The small children's choirs
These are adorable. Slowly herded on- and off-stage like tiny, dazed convicts, the kids generally remember half of the words and/or movements. I love how their levels of involvement range from cheerful enthusiasm to mild disinterest to the kid who's completely removed and staring at the ceiling lights*. And always, there's one kid who sings a little louder than the rest or a little longer than everyone else.
2. The baptisms
A ritual that is deeply important to both individual families and the entire congregation occasionally goes awry. Watching parents chase immaculately-dressed toddlers, squelch multiple flailing limbs or desperately attempt to calm a wailing infant - all under the steady rhythm of the pastor's voice - makes me giggle.
1. The couple who dress their toddler in a bear suit
I first thought the couple was toting an enormous teddy bear. Instead, it was a child, dressed in a one-piece fuzzy brown bodysuit with ears. I looked for that child every Sunday last winter. And I'm hoping the suit still fits him.
*Or playing with the plastic plants