The Rude Awakening

If you live in New York City – move on. You will feel no pity for me. I live in a quiet suburban neighborhood on a cul de sac. This is where the deer and the antelope play (minus the antelope).

If I want, and the weather cooperates, I can sleep with the windows open and know it will be mostly quiet. There is a fire station not far from here. If they use their siren, I’ve only heard it a few times over 15 years.

This morning at 8:30 AM the quiet was shattered as my neighbor’s alarm went off. These are neighbors we don’t talk with (though I’m sure this was an accident and nothing nefarious).

OK – 8:30 AM doesn’t seem early, but you’re not living your life on Hawaiian time. I am! Last night I went to sleep at 4:00 AM.

The idea of a home alarm is to scare a burglar and attract attention. This morning it scared my neighbor’s parents (who I assume were visiting) and attracted the fire department.

I wasn’t there and certainly can’t ask, but I’m guessing the moment the alarm went off, it lookd like that Expedia commercial where a young woman sends her parents on a vacation to a hotel where they’re sprayed with water in the bathroom and fall off chairs in the sitting room as the theme to the Jetsons plays!

In any event, my neighbor’s folks were powerless as all of this transpired.

It’s happened at my house, so I’m not going to rant on about disturbing the neighbors. People who live in alarmed homes shouldn’t throw stones.

This does bring up something curious about alarms. Have you ever driven by a home and found a sticker proclaiming the alarm on a window or maybe even a sign planted in the front yard&#185?


Why would you want to post a sign that says, “Hey, there’s an alarm here. Make sure you cut all the wires before you throw a rock in my window.”

Aren’t you safer without a sign? I know it’s less advertising for the alarm company, but they’re not my concern. Without a sign, that loud shrieking noise would be a burglar’s surprise.

I’ve always wanted to reverse the LEDs on my alarm panel so it looks like it’s off when it’s on and vice versa. Maybe I already have! Keep ’em guessing – on their toes.

Meanwhile, it never even entered my mind that the neighbor’s house might have been burglarized. That is the least likely reason for an alarm to go off here.

I was back asleep by 8:45.

&#185 – This is especially true in Southern California where alarm signs sprout in enough front lawns to considered a native species.

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