Tuesday, September 23, 2008

an open letter to the smoke detector in my apartment

I changed your battery in April -- on April Fools Day, in fact. What a fool I am for thinking that would settle our differences: you, thinking things are on fire when they are clearly not on fire; me, not wishing to poop the bed when you decide to go off -- for no reason -- at 4 in the morning.

I'll give you the benefit of the doubt: Maybe you want me to hone my ninja instinct when your shrill, devil's screech yanks me from precious, R.E.M. sleep. Maybe you want me to poke you with a broom handle in a desperate, misguided effort to get me to clean my apartment. Does your smoke sensor need to be cleaned? Is there a fundamental mix-up in your wiring? Are you a remedial smoke detector in need of a poorly funded educational program?

How come you only go off for 3 seconds? It's plenty enough time to scare the bajeezus out of me. I won't hear from you in weeks -- sometimes months. I think, hey, it fixed itself.


I hate you. I can't live without you. I don't want to die in a horrible fire. That would hurt bad. I know you work as an ACTUAL smoke detector. Like that time I scorched a steak in a grill pan and you wanted everybody in my apartment building to know what a terrible cook I am. Thanks.

There's no rhyme or reason to your bullshit. The only way I can reach you is by standing on the arms of a chair which I will fall off of resulting in my tragic death. You'd like that, wouldn't you.