“I listen to this for 200 hours a year,” said Hamilton-Parker, who works in a downtown shop near the annual bell ringers. “This is my fourth year and I can't take it anymore. I'm so sick of it.”She said the bell ringing starts in the morning, clangs all day long, then continues into the night. According to her calculations, she listens to 40 hours of Salvation Army bell ringing every week, for five weeks a year, or 200 hours a year.
Maybe I'm a Scrooge but every time I hear that obnoxious ringing my urge to dig out change gets smothered by my rising need to choke the bastard with the bell. It's not even the pitch, it's the frequency - it's like they're trying to match the bpm of a hummingbird's wings. You'd think the ringers would get carpal tunnel within a week. I would go stark raving mad having one camped outside my office window from Thanksgiving 'til Christmas.
Homicidal urges aside, they do get any convenient pocket change after Turkey Day. However, I do refuse to drop a penny in those kettles before Thanksgiving. The deal is, they get to assault my eardrums and guilt me out of change starting the day after Thanksgiving and I get to ignore them with prejudice anytime before I've had my turkey feast. It's like turning on Christmas music or busting out the Christmas decorations before Aunt Mary's burnt the rolls and Uncle Ed's passed out after his 3rd helping of pie, some things Just-Aren't-Done.