Improv Everywhere is a performance art comedy group that stages missions — essentially highly-organized, good-natured, mostly pseudo flash mob (plus some genuine flash mob) pranks — on the unwary for the amusement and entertainment of them and the rest of us. Check out their blog for details, pictures, and videos of their 100+ missions, which are always an awesome romp. Or, if you want to avoid the behind-the-scenes look at how the events happen (though, why would you?), you can always skip right to their YouTube channel.
Their latest caper, the Guerrilla Handbell Strikeforce, is a testament to how uplifting small, seemingly random acts of joy-giving can be.
Standing around in the cold, ringing a bell and hoping people will donate to the Salvation Army can be a rough gig. Having a bell choir unexpectedly show up to join in is going to boost your spirits, no matter how grumpy you are. (Unless you reeeallly hate bells and/or bell choirs.) The look on the Sally Ann bell ringer’s face says it all.
Joy to the world, indeed.
(As an aside, the comments on the post for this mission frequently stray into whether the Salvation Army is a worthy organization since they don’t allow gay people to join. Ithinkyernuts’ comment that “[…] hating people who hate gays is still hating” is something worth keeping in mind — if you want less hate in the world, you need to start with yourself.)