"God sometimes does His work with gentle drizzle, not storms. Drip. Drip. Drip." - John Newton (Amazing Grace)
Question #88831 posted on 01/30/2017 8:38 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I have a quick question and a related more intensive question:

1: How do you feel about the bells that mark the start and end of (most) classes/would you sign a petition that might be hypothetically created to remove said bells?

I personally find the bells an annoyance and a reminder of middle school days (the horrors), but I'm curious as to whether somebody out there enjoys the "melodic" ringing of the bells.

2: Why do we have those bells? I know of plenty of college campuses without a bell system. Why does BYU have one?

-Am I still in Middle School?

P.S. If necessary, please post answers to the first bit before the second bit. I am urgently interested in your opinions and mildly interested in the origins.


Dear person,

We have a bell system because it marks the start and end of most 50-minute classes. Maybe some buildings have annoying bells, but the building where I spend all my time has a pleasant-sounding electronic chime, so I'm totally fine with it. It helps me to not get too carried away when I'm doing something before/between classes so that I don't show up late, so I don't think I would sign your petition.

-The Entomophagist


Dear I Sincerely Hope Not,

The only building I have classes in that does this is the Talmage. Considering the bells are pretty quiet, I don't mind them at all. In light of this, I don't really care enough to sign a petition. Besides, I think it can be nice to have a definite marker for when class begins and ends.

Personally, merely having nondescript bells doesn't remind me at all of middle school (it would take people writing swear words all over my stuff to do that). If it did, I'm sure I'd have a very strong aversion to them.



Dear you,

I really like the bells because they encourage professors to end on time. I've had a few classes that end at an odd time without a bell, and they often go quite a bit over time.



Dear you,

Hear the loud alarum bells --
                         Brazen bells !
What tale of terror, now, their turbulency tells !
          In the startled ear of night
          How they scream out their affright !
               Too much horrified to speak,
               They can only shriek, shriek,
                         Out of tune,
In a clamorous appealing to the mercy of the fire,
In a mad expostulation with the deaf and frantic fire,
                  Leaping higher, higher, higher,
                  With a desperate desire,
               And a resolute endeavor
               Now -- now to sit or never,
          By the side of the pale-faced moon.
                  Oh, the bells, bells, bells !
                  What a tale their terror tells
                         Of Despair !
       How they clang, and clash, and roar !
       What a horror they outpour
On the bosom of the palpitating air !
          Yet the ear, it fully knows,
                By the twanging,
                And the clanging,
            How the danger ebbs and flows ;
       Yet, the ear distinctly tells,
             In the jangling,
             And the wrangling,
       How the danger sinks and swells,
By the sinking or the swelling in the anger of the bells --
                  Of the bells --
      Of the bells, bells, bells, bells,
             Bells, bells, bells --
   In the clamour and the clangour of the bells !

- Edgar Allan Poe