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Return of the ‘chirp!’

O, the irony! Exactly one year ago today, I wrote about a night interrupted by a chirping smoke detector. And in the wee hours this morning, it happened again. I had just crawled back into bed after a quick bio break and was dozing off … chirp!

The sound is unmistakable, and you know once you’ve heard it, it will come again as sure as day follows night. I lay there hoping against hope, but of course, a few minutes later … chirp! Another few minutes … chirp! No chance that puppy was going to give up for the night.

Remembering last year’s incident, I grabbed a chair and pulled down the smoke alarm in the hall. Ditto the one in the study. A preemptive strike. I wasn’t going to waste time trying to figure out which one was guilty. I took them both to the kitchen, pulled out the batteries, and dumped them into the trash where the dog couldn’t get them. There was another chirp! while I was doing this, and remembering what my son told me last year about capacitors powering residual chirps, I took both alarms to the front hall closet and buried them under a pile of gloves, hats, and scarves. No way I would hear them from the bedroom.

(You’re getting ahead of me now, aren’t you?) As I headed back down the hall to the bedroom, sure enough another chirp! Nope, not the third smoke alarm. It was the carbon monoxide detector, mounted right there at eye level, blinking LOBAT in its front window. Sigh. I’d walked right past it when I first got up.

Muttering unrepeatable things to myself, I returned to the kitchen, performed a third battery extraction and, finally got back to bed.

I could learn to hate October 19th.


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