The idea for National Ding-A-Ling Day came in 1971 when Franky Hyle of the Chicago area was at home with friends. "Some husbands and wives were sitting around my house, talking and drinking and thinking people ought to be friendlier to one another," he said. They looked up what "ding-a-ling" meant in a dictionary, and they found one of the definitions said it was "one who hears bells in his head." Hyle decided to create a day where celebrants would call people they haven't seen in years, in order to rekindle old friendships. He wanted to encourage people to be natural and let their guard down. Perhaps the idea of having a phone be involved in the day had to do with the fact that it rings, just like a ding-a-ling is associated with ringing.
In 1972, Hyle began placing an advertisement in Chase's Calendar of Annual Events saying December 12 was National Ding-A-Ling Day, and that a ding-a-ling was a "wonderful, friendly, intelligent, loving, responsible and desirable person." By 1975, almost 900 people had answered the ad and joined the Ding-A-Ling Club. They paid one dollar to become members, and received a bumper sticker which said: "Be a Bell Ringer."
I had some great choices for today's holiday! It's also Gingerbread House Day, but that sounded too time-consuming for one person, and less fun than it would be as a group effort. And then I read the description of National Ding-a-Ling Day, and knew that had to be it.
Now, I love the idea of going outside my comfort zone and making new friends, but those who know Jo know that calling anyone on the phone is not on my list of favorite things to do. So I may or may not pick up the phone and call someone, but I am definitely going to meet some new neighbors outside for a COVID-style visit.
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My Gender Mystique blog focuses on my work on clothing, sex, and gender. That's not all I do, so this blog is about everything else.