We'd been asleep for about an hour last night when the smoke alarm in the foyer started chirping because of a low battery. "What's that noise?" I said to Ryan, playing dumb. "I think it's the smoke alarm. It's low on batteries." "Huh" I said, then pretended to go to sleep.
"How do you fix it?" playing dumb again "Do we have any batteries?" knowing full well that we did not have any batteries since we had just looked for one to put in the baby monitor so we could continue drinking beer in the culdesac with our friends after the boys went to bed. That search and this one turned up no nine volt batteries, which was terribly disappointing in both cases.
Ryan sighed deeply and got out of bed. Supportive wife that I am, I tried to go back to sleep.
I heard Ryan bumping around. The chirping continued. Curious, I went downstairs to investigate.
"In my old house I used to just knock it off the ceiling with a spatula and take the battery out when this happened" I offered.
"I can't do that."
"BECAUSE!" Here he reached up and twisted and pulled on the smoke alarm until it popped off the ceiling and hung from a thick white wire.
"What the hell is THAT?"
"It's a power cord."
"A POWER CORD?! If it has a power cord then why the %#@$ is it beeping?"
"Because the battery is low."
[blink blink blink]
"It needs the battery so it will still work if the power goes out."
"But the power is NOT OUT! So why is it beeping?"
"I think I need to go buy a battery."
"Why on earth do we even HAVE a smoke alarm in the FOYER? It's not even a real ROOM. This is the dumbest thing ever. EVER!!"
Am prone to hyperbole when awakened from a deep sleep.
Fifteen minutes of chirping later I heard Ryan return from the store, but the beeping continued. I got downstairs just as Ryan was dragging a huge ladder in from the garage.
"I put the stupid battery in and it's STILL BEEPING. Frackity frack frack frack."
"OH MY GAWD can't you just cut that stupid WIRE or something? GOSH this is THE STUPIDEST THING EVER! If I want to die in a fire it's my business, not the stupid smoke alarm's!!!!"
Am prone to exaggeration and not very helpful when half asleep.
"I can't cut the wire because I WOULD BE ELECTROCUTED!"
He climbed up the ladder muttering something about stupid new houses with their stupid high ceilings, punctuating the major adjectives with angry footsteps on the ladder. He squinted at the three point font on the side of the smoke alarm for a moment then he took the battery out, put it back in, and slammed the battery compartment closed forcefully.
"That freaking thing better not..."