whatimeant2invent #2

A friggin’ smoke alarm that does anything but beep intermittently when the batteries run down.  Shoot silly string.  Pop out a little red flag that says, “Change the batteries, idiot!”  Send electric shocks down my spine.  Emit a strong smell of manure.  I do not care.  But someone please think of an alternative to that $%#@!@ beep.

And while you are pondering that conundrum, for the love of Wonderbutt, would someone tell me why the batteries always run down in the middle of the friggin’ night?

You can probably guess what fun and games we had in the Firepants household last night.

Especially if you have read about our golden retriever’s abhorrence of beeping sounds. She came by the nickname “Mrs. Pain in the Butt” quite honestly.

I’m pretty sure many of the readers out there have experienced the wonderful wake-up call of a battery operated smoke detector at 3 AM.  We’ve been through this before – with an electronic smoke detector, no less – so I was a bit surprised when Cap’n Firepants drowsily said, “What is that sound?”

“I’m guessing the smoke alarm batteries are dying,” I said.  He took a moment to process this, then slowly got up and opened the door to the hallway.  Every 30 seconds, the alarm chirped.

You might ask, “If you were so alert as to be able to immediately identify the noise, Mrs. Cap’n Firepants, why didn’t you get up to stop the noise?”

Because I can’t be trusted around noisy smoke alarms, that’s why.  I kill them.  I grab the nearest broom or mop and beat them to death.  And Cap’n Firepants is not particularly thrilled with this method.

After the Cap’n went out into the hall, Mrs. P.I.B. barreled through the baby gate barrier into our bedroom, panting from the exertion of panicking about the menacing beep.

It seemed to take the Cap’n forever to deal with the matter.  It turned out that he decided to actually change the batteries once he got it down – and the new batteries had the same effect as the old ones.  He gave up and came back to bed.

Realizing his favorite tormentee had scored a spot in the coveted master bedroom, Wonderbutt began to whine out in the hall.  After five minutes of that, I finally opened our door back up, moved the gate to our door, and brought Wonderbutt’s bed to the hallway side of the gate so he could at least have the illusion of being in the Forbidden Section.  He stayed for about three minutes, and went back out into the living room to his much beloved, and much abused, couch.

About 15 minutes later, the gate came tumbling down with a crash.  Dimples was trying to get into our room, and hadn’t seen the gate across the door.

“What’s wrong?” I said.

“I heard a beep,” she said, crawling into bed next to me.

“That was 20 minutes ago,” I said.

“I need my pillow,” she said, getting back up, falling over the gate again, and walking back to her bedroom.

10 minutes after she returned, the Cap’n got up to go sleep in the guest bedroom because she was “moving too much”.

I don’t know what time I got back to sleep, but the actual alarm that I set to wake me up went off far too early for my liking.

If that thing beeps again tonight, I cannot be held responsible for my actions.  What Phoebe did to her smoke alarm on Friends will look mild in comparison.

Posted on April 13, 2012, in Cap'n Firepants, Dimples, Dogs, Family, Humor, Mrs. P.I.B., Phobia, Wonderbutt and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 31 Comments.

  1. You are too funny to be true – this is so hilarious. We don’t have smoke alarms in our house which is pretty stupid as it is an old house and all the electrics are probably about to combust – I better look into it – thanks for reminding me you wonderwit!

  2. Sounds horrible. I don’t think I’m a full fledged Tinitus (I might have spelled that wrong, but am too tired to google) sufferer, but when I hear a repetitive beeping, sometimes I still hear it after it is turned off, so beeping drives me absolutely crazy. So, so, so sorry. It sounds like a nightmare of a night.

  3. I’ve had this happen, too. My night of smoke alarm hell occurred on a long weekend long after stores were closed, and I owned a special type of “safety” alarm that beeped even without a battery to inform the tormented owner it needed another battery.

    My sincere sympathies to the Firepants household. I suggest putting it in the tank of the nearest toilet. It shall bleep no more.

  4. invent another one that is less annoying and i will buy a gazillion of them. i will give them for baby shower gifts because not only does it happen in the middle of the night, your dog (any dog) has a crazy reaction, you have just gotten your baby to fall asleep after she’s been awake for like seven days, you yourself haven’t slept in about a week, and ALL THE OTHER ALARMS SENSE THIS ONE ALARM AND START BEEPING (oh, and did i say “who the F&*k buys 9 volt batteries???”). it has to be one of The Most Annoying Things Ever.

    • I completely agree. I think we should start a list of The Most Annoying Things Ever. It would certainly be near the top. Of course, dying in a fire because I forgot to replace the batteries would be somewhat annoying too. Sometimes I have a problem prioritizing…

  5. Its soooo true! Why do they have to run off batteries? Why can’t they be solar powered, or something? I have heard you are supposed to remember to change them on a significant date to you, like your child’s bday, but already I must have got confused what child we picked because we don’t do that method. Sorry it happened on a night that you couldn’t sleep in a little the next day!

  6. I sure hope the smoke alarm manufacturers are reading this! I’ve become resigned to the fact that the beeping will *always* occur at night. That’s just a manifestation of Murphy’s Law.

    But we have a 2-storey house with a basement – 2 smoke alarms and a carbon monoxide detector on each floor. That’s 9 separate devices that might be beeping in the middle of the night when I’m stumbling around half-asleep and swearing. And the evil little things are ventriloquists. You think you’ve got the right one, and then you hear the beep from somewhere else.

    Couldn’t they at least put a blinking light on the dang things so I’d know which one was making the noise?

  7. We howled as we read this whole post! We’re sorry everyone had a bad night.

    This has happened to us too. Also, our humans have a house alarm that loves to go off occasionally in the middle of the night. It is sheer torture being awakened by the alarm thinking a burglar is downstairs. Our daddy usually jumps out of bed and checks it out so we can keep warm in our beds.

    At least Wonderbutt got some exposure to the “forbidden area” 🙂 We hope tonight is better.

    Bella and DiDi

  8. My husband is quite deaf so he doesn’t hear it. I have to hound him to change the batteries. And I hound him about enough already.

    • I could be wrong, but it seems like I have reminded the Cap’n to change the batteries, and that he said we didn’t need to because it was electric. I’m sure it’s his fault somehow.

  9. Miranda Gargasz

    Too funny! I suppose ear plugs would defeat the purpose, huh? lol

  10. It only happens at night! I am sure they are fitted with secret light sensors that ensure that they will only announce their demise during darkness 🙂

  11. Whoever invents this will make a LOT of money.

  12. One of the best episodes of Friends – ever.

    Be gentle…

  13. LOL! Exactly how it goes too. I know how you feel. Once in a while the collies have a restless night and gates crash, we get the endless parade of collie noses in our faces asking us if we are asleep or are we getting up yet. No, its 1:40 am go back to bed Ginger!!! Sigh….. the only thing different with smoke alarms here is that when they go off so do all our collies to tell us it is going off. The bright side is that we cant hear the smoke alarm anymore… well… we cant hear anything anymore … LOL…. Hope you get some sleep tonight…

    God Bless You!
    the barking collies and the suffering chuck 🙂

  14. Your intro to this made me instantly think of that scene from Friends with Phoebe and the fire alarm. I’m with you on the solution to beeping things – the rage, the inner turmoil, and the urge to beat those electronics to a pulp is unstoppable! Wishing you a much more peaceful sleep tonight.

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