I was a bit nervous about it. The people that I usually see doing it, often look like it's the last thing that they'd want to do in the world. They look so sad and miserable. And I'll tell the truth. I often avoid their eyes because I can't give them money. It's either because I don't have it to give, or I've already given. More than anything, I didn't want to be that kind of bell ringer.
I had a plan. Besides having an idiot elf hat to wear ... I've decided that the more that someone is willing to look like a fool, the more worthy the cause-lol ...I was inspired by the opening scene of the film, Holiday Inn, where Fred Astaire gives a lesson to the bell ringer set up to some kids busking playing music and dancing.
I brought a cd player (old fashioned, I know in these days of iPods), and played music throughout my two-hour shift. I rang the bell to the music. I had fun with it, syncopating when the jazzy ones were on and generally bee-bopping along. I'm convinced that it made me less intimidating.
The people passing by seemed to enjoy it, and I actually got more money out of the deal. Oh, and bonus ... the time went by a lot quicker. I might be tempted to sign up for two shifts next year. :)