I love cow bells at a bike ride. I prefer at least two in each hand, if possible. Loud and clattering. I’ve even given myself blisters, clanging them repeatedly for scores of riders at charitable events.
We’ll have bells for volunteers at every stop along the Coast of Hope route. Hopefully some team members will get a chance to use them. I’d like to hear back some reports of enthusiastic noise.
Some riders love the peal of the bells. The acknowledgement of their ride as they come to each stop.
Others arrive, and want quiet and peace, not a headache-inducing racket. So maybe we put the bells down for a few minutes.
But, hey, I live by the famous line from Saturday Night Live, “More cow bell!” (I’m including the link, if you need a chuckle. Link: http://www.ebaumsworld.com/video/watch/719364/)
Okay, they’re rather tinny. Not the deep-throated call of bells made from fine metal. Like ones in a steeple, or even the chiming sound of choral bells. Ones forged with better shape and different clappers.
These go … clink-clonk. A chorus of them sounds surprisingly cheerful, though.
As an interesting piece of trivia, a few hundred years ago, in the late 17th century, the residents over in Essex wished to raise their own meetinghouse (it served as their church, as well as a gathering place for communal government). But the head of the local Ipswich parish, to which Essex folks belonged at the time, disagreed with their request. While the matter was in legal dispute, the men of the Essex parish were ordered to cease work on their meetinghouse.
In a clever skirting of the unpopular ruling, the women of the Essex community helped raise the structure instead. They hadn’t been ordered to stop, so they kept building.
Almost a century later, Essex congregation hung a bell designed by Paul Revere in the structure’s steeple. It was cast from precious metal collected throughout the local community.
Our cow bells? No fine silver in sight. But if you’re the one who has ridden long miles, and needs a boost, wouldn’t you be moved by the sound of someone’s cheering and appreciation? And the song of a few happy bells lifted for you? Listen for them on Saturday
Our Coast of Hope mantra: “More cow bell!”