Odds & Ends

To Sleep Perchance to Dream…or Not

A couple of months ago Catherine wrote a very useful and informative post about how to install smoke detectors. This is a different type of post. This is a post about how to destroy smoke detectors! (*maniacal laughter*)

…Not really…sort of. I am generally a safety kid and in favor of smoke detectors. But after last night I am rethinking it all. I suddenly have sympathy for all those nicotine addicts who try to disable smoke detectors in the airplane bathroom (which should be called a bathcloset…but I digress).

A couple of nights ago I thought I heard someone talking in my house. I woke up went to the stairs and called out to hopefully scare any would be burglars from my house and then made sure all the doors were locked and decided that it was just a crazy dream.

Last night I was visited again by voices. In case you are worried for my sanity, you should be, but not because I am hearing voices in my head, but because I can’t get the smoke alarm to shut up.

Probably I should start from the beginning. I got jerked awake last night at about 1 am by what can only be called the chirp a bird in the clutches of Lenny from Of Mice and Men, who instinctively knows that it is about to be squeezed to death, because it is “soft like a mouse”. Sorry Paula and everyone for the morbid analogy, but it was a very, very long night.

This sick chirp was then followed by a robotic sounding female voice repeating over and over, “Low battery.”

Now, I appreciate the modern world that reminds those of us who do not remember to change the batteries in the smoke detector the first weekend of each April and October that we need to get on it. But this is a little ridiculous. I have timed it. IT chirps and SHE speaks approximately once per minute. I know what you are thinking, “Duh, just change the battery!” But when this torture starts at 1 am in the morning and you don’t have any 9v batteries and the local grocery store has decided it should go back to the dark ages and close at midnight, what is a person to do?!?

So all night…*chirp*…”Low battery”…1 minute…*chirp*…”Low battery”…1 minute…*chirp*…you get the idea.

Needless to say, I was contemplating ripping the thing out of the ceiling. Even as I write this, I am contemplating smoke detector murder… But instead I think it would be more productive to determine what I have learned from this experience.

Life Lessons:

1. Always change the batteries in the smoke detectors the first weekend in April and the first weekend in October.

2. If you forget #1, at least keep some extra 9v batteries in your freezer. (This is where Mom and Dad always kept them and I don’t know if it preserves them for longer, but I am not taking any chances.)

3. If you forget #1 and #2, find somewhere else to sleep for the night, because it won’t be at your house.

(One last thought: When you think you hear voices in your house at night, don’t assume it was a dream…check the smoke detectors, SHE may be trying to tell you something!)

Sweet Dreams,



  • Very funny Brooke. You have such a fun sense of writing. People who can write are a pleasure to read. Catherine would love to have you in her class. You would, no doubt, write a fun paper.

  • Hilarious Brooke. I’ll be sure to stay with the chirp-only detectors. Thank goodness for my Sports Addict too, who goes ballistic whenever he hears a chirping detector. It’s one thing he thankfully takes care of.

  • Smoke detectors ONLY start chirping at night! My small house has 7 (!) of them! It’s so annoying when I can’t figure out which one is doing the chirping at 2 a.m. I found this website somehow and I’ve been enjoying the stories about you, your sisters, and the rest of the family. Keep on writing, all of you!

  • I know you posted this quite some time ago but I am only getting a chance to read it now. Hilarious! Also reminds me of the most recent Modern Family episode. At least you didn’t “burn your lady fingers” too. Love this web site!

    • Thanks, Brooke C! I totally cracked up when I saw that episode of Modern Family, too; love that show. Thanks for visiting. :)