Shut up, Ted

Once again, local old coot Ted Storck has a letter published in the local paper. He needs a friend to take him a side and explain to him that he’s looking a bit obsessive, obnoxious even, or maybe to just say, “Shut up, Ted.” He’s still upset that the neighborhood got tired of his loud, repetitive chimes, so he feels the need to explain himself, and he’s reading articles in the National Catholic Register to explain how it’s Satan that led to the removal of his noisy electronic gadget.

Awww. The article also states the devil hates the electronic recording used by some churches, or the electronic carillon bells that used to resonate across Summit and Calvary Cemeteries, and now is heard at St. Clare Church in Surprise, Arizona, after they were forced to be moved from the Morris cemeteries. If I were to read that aloud, I’d be sure to break into melodramatic sobbing as I got near the end of the sentence.

Clearly, the problem was that the devil moved into the corner house a block south of the cemetery, and has triumphed.

Shut up, Ted.


  1. lumipuna says

    “Knowing why the church bells ring”

    Amusingly, just this Monday the bells of Turku cathedral in Finland went ringing mysteriously. It was soon found to be a mechanical error, but they couldn’t get it fixed until Tuesday morning. I saw this mentioned on national news.

    (This is Finland’s most prestigious church, the seat of the Lutheran archdiocese.)

  2. mamba says

    So according to the Catholic registrar, the Devil is app powerful evil, but hates the sound of a simple bell?

    THIS is the all powerful evil we should fear?

    Not to mention the natural assumption that everyone in earshot is Catholic and needs to be told when to drop and pray!

    Spare me…

  3. strangerinastrangeland says

    That can’t be right. I have it from good authority (Young, Young & Johnson) that Satan is ringing his Hell’s Bells. I even have an electronic recording of them among my CD collection.

  4. birgerjohansson says

    The demons I hang with say they like the sound of bells since the food tends to congregate in a single place on sundays when the bells toll, making it easier to eat souls.

  5. Larry says

    Next up: Why Satan hates the accordion, thus stopping me from playing polka from the Lutheran church.

  6. steve1 says

    I wonder why they don’t ring the bells at midnight as well. They seem to have a thing for them ringing every six hours. On another note, the devil doesn’t only just hate bells he also hates lutefisk, but lutefisk tends to attract Norwegians.

  7. PaulBC says

    I thought Angelus was just the vampire depicted so memorably by David Boreanaz. You learn something new every day!

  8. PaulBC says

    the devil hates bells

    Right, I mean, the devil went up to Minnesota to challenge some kid to a carillon contest just doesn’t work somehow.

  9. Reginald Selkirk says

    So the reason is medieval superstition. I don’t see a reason to continue with that.

  10. PaulBC says

    I’m also pretty sure many people who appreciate Storck’s explanation of bells would be freaking out (and not just complaining about noise) if there was a Muslim call to prayer audible to the community on a regular basis.

  11. tedw says

    The paper should try the Cleveland Browns approach: “Dear Mr. Storck; Attached is a letter we received on (date). We feel you should be aware some asshole is signing your name to stupid letters.”

  12. whheydt says

    Re: Larry @ #6…
    Find a copy of the “Graviportal Polka”.

    Re: steve1 @ #8…
    The old monastic tradition was every 4 hours.

  13. anthrosciguy says

    The Devil told me he loves recorded bell sounds, as it shows to him the bell ringers are lazy posers who care so little for their God they won’t so much as lift a finger to ring a real bell. He says it means he’s winning, and that guys like Ted there are his minions.

    But then that was yesterday…

  14. bcw bcw says

    @4 What fraction of the local paper’s letters to the editor get cut out and posted to a national website?
    Come on, the paper recognizes comedy gold when it see’s it.
    Admittedly, a better choice of headline would have been “ding dong” or something like that.

    Now the paper can expect response letters from people saying how much they hated the cheap electronic bells going all the time.

  15. Bruce says

    How would Storck feel if he went to the store at 6 pm and they closed it, saying it was time for them and all medieval Catholics to stop work, pray, and go home for the day? Also, even if Storck is a modern Catholic, he’d have many traditions that are now different, depending on exactly which century he took as the permanent rule. THEY would consider HIM to be a heretic, and might kill him, because he was of the devil. He should be more careful what he wishes for.

  16. nomdeplume says

    I am always stunned by the way people like Mr Storck make statements, with the utmost confidence, that are complete rubbish, and, as in this case about the “Incarnation”, total gibberish.

  17. waydude says

    If I lived in one of these places with church bells going off at certain times, I would invest in a giant loudspeaker and play the Inception BRAAAAAAAAHHHHH at the same time

  18. blf says

    Since moving to (actually, returning to, but that’s neither here-nor-there) Europe, there has always been tortured-to-death bells. Real bells, not recordings, etc. Sometimes actual cathedral bells, other times (semi-)rural church bells, etc, but always real bells. Sometimes obviously auto-timed (so presumably mechanically operated). But never, never obnoxious, as in “every hour”, typically just two or three times a day (more on “special” days). Sometimes LOUD, but not annoying as such (rather Ok, albeit usually quite boring and predictable).

    I’ve rather gotten use to the usual local bell schedule, which (except on Sundays and some holidays) is 9am, noon, and 7pm — “Time to go to bed”, “Is there anything I need to due whilst the Sun is up?”, and “Consider getting up (at least to put out the garbage).” Pre-pandemic, the later two included “where to go to get breakfast?” and “pub time!”

  19. jrkrideau says

    The article also states the devil hates the electronic recording used by some churches, or the electronic carillon bells

    I an totally in agreement. No problem with a call to prayer assuming the mussiem has a decent voice.

  20. PaulBC says

    blf@23 This may qualify as a suppressed memory, but the ETH Zürich Computer Science Department is right across from Liebfrauen Catholic church, or was when I was there as a postdoc. I have not thought about it in years. I am pretty sure those bells were audible from my office. A long time has passed, so I’m not entirely sure. It definitely has a bell tower.

  21. PaulBC says

    This would suggest I was not imagining the bells. A coworker of mine returned from the UK with a bell-ringing injury last year. It sounded like a very British thing I could not possibly understand, though it might be a European thing I can’t possibly understand (Brexit or not).

    I’m pretty sure the Devil loves all forms of electronic sound. At least electric guitar. Isn’t rock and roll “the Devil’s music”?

    On a related note, I was in Southern California recently and observed that the Los Angeles skyline looks a lot better in the Lucifer opening than in real life. (Or maybe it was just a foggy day, but I dare anyone to correct me.)

  22. KG says

    The old monastic tradition was every 4 hours. – whheydt@14

    But in the 11th century, which Storck cites, they would have been “hours” of unequal length: day and night were both divided into 12 “hours”, so in summer, daylight hours were longer than nighttime ones, in winter the reverse. Even after mechanical clocks came in, starting in the late 13th century, the shift to a division of the time it takes for the sun to go round the earth* into 24 equal parts took quite a while. In which connection I’ll recommend God’s Clockmaker: Richard of Wallingford and the Invention of Time by John North, and The Light Ages by Seb Falk.

    *Whaddya mean, the sun doesn’t go rround the earth? You can see it doing so!