Skip to main content

How Can That Little Disc Make That Much Noise?

Think of a sound that drives you crazy.

Now, multiply it by 100,000 and it repeats every 10 seconds ... Know what you have?

Answer: A smoke detector with a faulty battery.

Coincidentally, that's what we had ... on Halloween night. Actually, we had at least two. It sounded like Angry Birds were unleashed in the bedroom ceiling.

It happened at about 11PM.

Debbie and I were just heading to bed. Trick or Treaters had finally stopped ringing the doorbell (The little guys go home at 7 ... the teenagers at 9 ... the druggies still hang out till 11). We dragged ourselves to the bedroom when ...


"Oh crap", I said.

"I'll get the batteries," Debbie calmly replied as I dragged the ladder out of the garage and slammed my knee in the process. I muttered more obscenities.

"You know, Joel ... you always curse when you have to fix something in the house."

"Excuse me? I do not." Hobbling, I put the ladder under the first beeping smoke detector, climbed the steps and tried to unscrew the ridiculous plastic disc that wants to pull away from the ceiling instead of coming apart.

"Yes ... you do. You never just fix things without cursing."

"Sorry, I should have said  ... 'Oh honey, I think I'll just fly up this ladder and replace this little battery to quiet our precious smoke detector'... right?" Just as I finally got the disc opened, the battery flew out and hit Debbie right on top of the head.

"SON OF A ... (she couldn't bring herself to say bitch) !!!"

"Sorry honey (suppressing laughter). It just flew out ... can you ... um ... hand me another battery?" Maybe I was living dangerously at that point. Fortunately, Debbie has terrible aim and I was comforted by the fact that she was as annoyed by that sound as I was. She handed me the battery.

I slipped the new one in and closed it up. I moved to the next beeping one and did the same thing.

"Okay ... that's that. Let's go to bed."


We looked at each other silently. I took the ladder out and started all over again. "Are these new batteries?" I asked.

"Of course they are."

"How many do you have?"

"A few. Why?"

"I might have to replace all of these."

"No you don't."

"I did last time until they all shut up."

"You only did one last time."

"I did not."


"Did you put it in right."

I didn't answer. I just repeated the process.



I did it again. I put newer batteries in. I talked to it, coddled it ... all but kissed it. It was quiet. We waited.

I said, "Okay ... I think that's got it."

"Good, let's go to sleep ... and don't curse any more."

We turned out the lights.


Debbie sat up in the bed then covered her ears with the pillow as she screamed: "SHUT THE HELL UP!!!!!"



Melanie said…
FYI - cursing makes the job easier. It is a stress reliever! (At least that is what I tell myself because I am the exact same way!!)
Joel Momberg said…
Melanie ... Glad to hear it. I agree ... My head would explode if I didn't.
Karen said…
Sounds like me and my husband!

Popular posts from this blog

SAMMY: The Novel (An Overview)

I finished writing Sammy:The Novel. 

So ... I called my good buddy and excellent writer, Dave Scheiber, to help me write an overview to pique the interest of publishers. The stuff that Dave wrote made me want to read my own book! We combined our efforts and here's what we came up with:

SAMMY (An Overview)

Sammy Levine, 86-year-old resident of Star of David nursing home, was not happy with his daily existence and dreamed of taking one last trip with his wife Esther (presently residing in an urn on the third shelf in his room). Sammy was careful about not exposing his plan to anyone, especially his son, Barry, who dutifully visited regularly and tried to make sure that he lived out his remaining days comfortably.

Through a carefully choreographed plan, Sammy managed to access personal information on three recently deceased residents from the nursing home’s computers. Then he applied for and obtained three new credit cards. Armed now with available cash and credit, he loaded up Esth…

Close Call

I was just putting the finishing touches on my new novel, Sammy, which will be available to order in November (shameless self promotion!) ... when I started thinking about some of the characters in my past life. One character I've actually written about in the past just popped into my head. It's a repeat story but I hope you enjoy it ... again.

When I was a Freshman at LSU, our dorm was set up like a suite with two adjoining double rooms and a common kitchen and living room. "Suite" really makes it sound much fancier than it was. Actually, living room makes it sound much fancier than it was. The walls were cinder block and the living room was about 100 square feet. I don't think four of us could even stand up in there at one time.

One of the four guys in our suite was the place kicker for the LSU Tigers. His name was Phil and he was from Bogalusa, Louisiana. He had the bed next to mine. Phil was about 6'8" and weighed well over 300 pounds. He was a big …

Princess Grace's Diary

We surprised our little princess, Grace on Friday with a last minute visit to Savannah. She and her BFF Stella had a joint princess birthday party.

It was of course no surprise to Deb and me that the trip had a few surprises for us, too.

It started out with a light show at the airport (we chose to fly rather than drive the 12 hours back and forth for one day). Lightning strikes were coming fast ... so the tarmac was closed until it settled down. We had to get to Atlanta in time to catch what had become the LAST flight of the night to Savannah at 11:20 PM.

We made it ... barely ... and fell asleep at 2 AM.

Up at 8 and out the door via Uber to The Landings (a mere 45 minute drive) and just in time to see this adorable duo.

Big brother Cole was  one of the "hosts".

Pony rides were there for the guests.

Matching Princess cakes (of course).

Lots of fun.

At about 2, Deb and I headed back to the airport with Nikki driving and made it in PLENTY of time to find out that there were n…