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When everything turns to nothing, I'll still be there for you.
Beeep. ... Beeep.  
12th-Jun-2017 10:14 am
edy 出口
Let me tell you a story.

The kind of story that is a little, let's say "painful", while it is happening, but probably quite funny in hindsight. Once it's a story, not an ongoing event.

Part I

So, about a week ago, at 6am I suddenly find myself awoken with a start (after about two hours of sleep, and tell you what, two hours of sleep and me don't agree. It's almost worse than not sleeping at all) to the noise of an alarm. So I sit in bed, heart pounding, get up, look around... realise it's not the fire alarm. What the fuck is making that noise?

Disoriented, I think I went to the bathroom first to get changed in case it was a fire alarm, but wait... it wasn't. The sound came from my stove alarm. Peculiar little thing, came pre-installed but without manual. Had freaked me out a few times after I had just moved in and was making food the normal way when it would suddenly go off. Just touching it makes the sound go away though, so all good at those particular instances.
Well, I touched it. Believe me, I did. Nothing happened.

I touched it a lot. I smacked it. I realised the actual little device itself can detach from its metal holder, so I grabbed it. Look and behold... it wasn't even the little device that made the noise, but something in the ... wall? that I couldn't even reach?

So, I'm disoriented, dizzy, distraught, and my head starts hurting an awful lot. I can't focus, but I grab my iPad and go online - the device had a serial number on the back, let's look for a manual. Few moments later, I had found the right one. I skim read through twenty or so pages for the "intelligent stove guard", "most secure" "best choice", figure out the beeping pattern is the one for "battery empty please change" for a battery that is supposed to last 9 years in a device that is not even three years old. I read all that, and I also read, that there's nothing I can do to make it stop.
Oh, there was something I could *try* however, which was taking the device apart... well... not like it said so anywhere in the manual, but there was one page with a little description in images that there were small on/off switches on the inside of it. Not like it said anywhere what those were for. But so I looked for screwdrivers, found them, took the whole thing apart, switched the switches... nothing.

Meanwhile, I'm having a mental meltdown. The noise is like Chinese water torture. I'm dizzy from getting woken up after two hours, the noise is causing me a headache and I can't fucking do anything about it. I was so ready to smash that thing, just my realisation that it had two parts, one the actual silent device, and two the installed thing in the ... wall... which was beeping... so I couldn't even smash it :D plus it would have been a bad idea.


I was completely overwhelmed with the situation. And I don't function on two hours. So I thought, I should try and get some sleep in and have this meltdown pass so I can deal with it with a cool head.

So I lay back down. I was barely conscious to begin with. Thankfully I had earplugs close by. ... They didn't help much. I dug myself into my blankets (although it was way too warm for that), didn't help much. The battery beeping, as you might want to know, was a beep that came once a minute.

"Oh that's not too bad..." you might think.
Well, think again.
If it were at a shorter interval, my brain could probably have gotten used to it at some point and designated it as background noise. However, once a minute is just long enough for your brain to calm down, settle in and start falling asleep, JUST to rip you out of it again as you had just forgotten about the alarm and yet there it is.
So, sleep didn't really happen. I kept falling asleep and waking up in I don't know what kind of intervals. At some point, I think around 11 or so, I finally gave up and got up. Oh, yeah. I had actually tried going to our housing-management site while this all was going on, but it wouldn't let me log in. Thanks to my meltdown I couldn't deal with that situation at all. Now that I had a bit more... 'sleep', I started up my laptop and logged in from there. Easy peasy. I selected "contact janitor" and wrote them my little problem. ... The only way to contact them.
At about 2pm, I hear back from them - they'll be over shortly. I had told them it was the "battery low" signal, and sure enough, the guy came prepared. However, he wasn't quite sure what to do at first either, so he talked to some person on the phone. I was pretty relaxed at this point. Didn't have to sleep anymore so whatever was fine. Plus it was day now, with lots of background noise to cancel the sound out anyway.

At about half past two, after changing the batteries, then realising he'd have to cut off electricity to reset it, the noise finally stopped. We made some small talk - the battery's supposed to last 9 years... me saying I had read all that in the manual ;) ... him being very sorry about it all and since when had it been going on? Since 6am... Had I been using the stove when it was happening? No, I prefer sleeping around that time. Oh sheesh, well hope this solves it - at least you could still use the stove while it was going on. So he left me to my things, said to just contact them again if something happens with it again, and I went back to trying to read for my next exam (YAY FOCUS ON TWO HOURS or so of sleep lol...) and well, things weren't so bad anymore.

Part II

But WAIT. There's a part two.

Friday, ten minutes to midnight. I sit there playing some game, when suddenly... yes. Beeep. Bip. Beeep. Bip.

The alarm goes off again :D
This time... a different pattern. Now, since I was already well versed in all things 'this particular stove alarm', I remembered it meant something else this time. I quickly looked it up again, and oh, this was the warning sound that "something is wrong" and as a security measure, it would switch of the stove. The only way to stop it, is to switch off the electricity.

Which I as tenant have no power over :)

This time, the alarm is every five seconds. Long, short, long, short. Every five seconds :)
Welp, I wrote the janitors a message, and went on with my business. At some point early morning I went to "sleep", and got a few hours in. I tried sleeping with music in my ears, but once the music had switched itself off it didn't last long before the beeping made my brain wake up. So at some point I get up, check the site... but no message from them. Ok. I go about my business and keep checking. I get a little on edge... then decide calling their emergency number.

"thank you for contacting SIO. Our office hours are Monday through Friday..."


Soooooo... I wouldn't be able to reach anyone until Monday :D

Well, you know, as I stated earlier, alarms at a more frequent interval are easier to deal with. After a day with mine, my headaches had stopped and it was pretty much a (very annoying) background noise. I had already made plans to keep my playstation on spotify over night and just blast music to drone out the noise, sorry neighbours. Well, that was the plan.
Anyway, evening then night comes along, and I'm thinking shit, I'm famished, I need to make some food. I actually get really excited for some nice soup. So I go to my oven...

... and realise...

...nope. The thing had turned it off and there was nothing I could do to turn it on. No warm food for this one here until at least monday. This one doesn't own a microwave. This one needs the stove and oven to make food. Okay, this one wouldn't starve entirely, there's enough crisp bread, canned veggies, nuts and chocolate/cookies in the house to make me last that long, but mhh, yeah it's a convenience and a luxury, being able to cook dinner and all that, a luxury I am very fond of.

Monday seemed very far off.
Now, I am lucky that someone was very concerned about my mental health (and my stomach's emptiness) and convinced me to order a pizza - he'd pay. Fine. I ordered a pizza. Things were looking up for at least Saturday, but what about Sunday? I didn't feel like just eating crispbread for breakfast and dinner, so I quickly went to the store for some alternative options. Bless their shrimps. Bought a pound of them - dinner for Sunday was saved.

I actually managed to sleep from Saturday to Sunday. The 'having the music on during the night' had helped.

Sunday went by (went to see Wonderwoman, what a wonderful movie, damn. [made me realise too much how little attractive men are to me ahahah *shot*] and I went to sleep and fouuuuund myself in a not being able to sleep long position :D Not sure why. Probably because I still hadn't heard back from the office, and whenever I heard a car approach I got a little uneasy, since I didn't want to miss them ringing the doorbell, or as they are prone to do, the simple knocks.

So I am on about two hours of sleep again (if not less... yes, probably less), famished, and still no message from them.

At least I'm on my vacations now, so it doesn't fucking matter how much I get to sleep, it won't affect anything crucial. Just my sanity I guess.


Well I'll see how this goes ahah.
12th-Jun-2017 11:12 am (UTC)

Still beeping???
It's Monday - is there nobody working? Where's the helpful guy?

Oh my goodness. This IS torture! Like this "water boarding".
F*** modern high-technology shit.

Keep me posted ...
14th-Jun-2017 12:19 pm (UTC)
Lol yes... I know for a fact I'm scarred for life with these "intelligent ovn guard" things. At least in your own apartment you could probably fix it because you'd be able to switch off the electricity.
The people from the janitor office said they'd relay it on to an electrician. That was... Monday? He came by today though. He actually had to pull the whole stove away (So this is where the box was hidden...) and install/deinstall something there. Not entirely sure, maybe he switched out the entire unit. He also said that he's had mixed experiences with that product...
Now finally it's silence. I guess I'll catch up on sleep from here on out lol. I think I had a maximum of 20 hours in five nights haha (which is only because one miraculous night I did actually get in 7-8 hours lol. So it's more like 12hrs for 4 nights). ... and I can finally make food. Goodbye wasa, shrimps and nuts marathon lol
14th-Jun-2017 01:31 pm (UTC)
Puh, luckily ...

But for what purpose is this oven guard? That you don't forget to switch it off or something like that? Never heard of this before, really makes no sense. Well, my oven would switch off automatically if there is nothing on it, but without alarm and it would not go down completely.

Hm, maybe you will miss this nice sound next night. The brain gets accustomed to such things rather fast.

Aren't there kitchens available for everybody you could use in such emergencies?
Roaded on Sep 20th 2017, 6:16 pm GMT.