Sunday, February 20, 2011

the bells, again and always

At first it's almost nice, the tinkling bells playing music every now and then. The wind catches the sound just right and it's kind of pretty. For a while.

Then it gets to the point where it's a little annoying. You're watching TV and the wind only catches every few notes and it doesn't quite make a tune, but you can still hear it. But you assume it sounds better to people who actually listen for it.

Then come a few months where it's getting real old real quick. You can pick out certain songs now and they're the same hymns you hear for sale on CD box sets on TV at 3:00 am. But the church has a new toy and they're bound to play it to death and it's only 20 minutes twice a day. You suppose you can live with that.

Then comes winter, and you can't hear it unless you happen to be out. And when that happens, it does raise your hackles but it's only during this one errand so you bite your tongue. After all, who are you to try to shut down music that for all you know, everyone else loves.

Then the weather starts to turn nice, and you open up the windows, and then you hear the bells. Those godawful bells. And you call the church and find out that they'll never stop. They will play every day, day after day, over and over for eternity. When the Rapture comes, all the good little Christians will be swept away and the rest of you will be left with these infernal never-ending bells. Nuclear war could break out and all that would be heard for eons afterward would be the skittering of cockroaches and those obnoxious eternal bells, twice a day, every day, for ever.

It's like Chinese water torture. Just a little thing, the music twice a day, but when a little thing never stops it gets to be a big thing. Like a mosquito in your ear, or Kim Jong Il.

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