Category Archives: Fire Alarm

Microwaves, smartphones, peanut butter, and sleep walking

For some reason my sleep-walking has become worse over the past few weeks. Besides the usual things like rearranging the towels, or being found sitting on the edge of the bed, or waking up on the toilet, I have awoken in the kitchen after microwaving my smartphone.

When my husband Matt has found me sitting on the edge of the bed, I tend to be talking to myself. Sometimes he can understand what I am saying, but mostly I am mumbling gibberish. Eventually I return to laying down in the bed, and in the morning have no recollection of the incident.

I can understand being asleep on the loo. Obviously I have gone there to do my business, and well I just don’t leave for some reason. It is not a good place to sleep for any length of time, when I do wake up, my ass is sore, to be blunt. Toilet seats need to be heated and cushioned.

The other night I found myself in the kitchen. I had filled the dog treat jar (an old cookie jar) with water. Did I turn on the tap or take the jug of water from the refrigerator? Haven’t a clue. We use a butter bell for our butter. I found I had filled the bottom half of the container which is supposed to house the water, with butter. Again, I don’t know why. What woke me this time? Apparently I had been trying to open the jar of peanut butter but didn’t succeed. Now I don’t even like peanut butter all that much, we have it mainly for the dogs. Cocoa won’t take his daily arthritis medicine without a scoop of peanut butter.

The most interesting sleep-walking experience of 2015 is when I mistook my beloved Blackberry Z10 for a heating pad (the ones you can toss in the microwave or freezer). I have been in a lot of pain since Christmas, having done far too much with not enough rest. My pain level was reaching unmanageable levels, so I was sleeping with two heating pads on my back. Sometime during the night, I assume after they had cooled off, I placed both of them on the headboard above the bed.

Next well still asleep, I picked up my smartphone (again something I normally do when walking down the stairs at night, it has a flashlight I turn on so I won’t fall, but then I placed it in the microwave. I can only assume I thought it to be my new heating pad as I entered the time of 2 minutes and 20 seconds – the time it takes to warm the pads up. After about say a minute and thirty seconds, I saw flames in the microwave. My smartphone was on fire! I opened the door, smoke bellowed out, but realizing oxygen just makes the fire worse, I slam the door closed, and turn off the microwave.

The smoke alarms are blaring as I grab a soaking wet cloth, open the door again, and toss the cloth on the phone. The flames are out so I toss my Blackberry in a pot of water, which had been left in the sink to soak from the previous night’s dinner. At the same time the young man and my husband have run downstairs. The young man was thinking he could be the hero, saving us all from a fire, only to find his mother, me, standing by the sink saying WTF over and over. The young man is disappointed and believe what I have just done.Hubby goes around opening windows, and turning on our ceiling fans, in effort to remove the toxic smoke that has filled the first floor of our house.

I cut my smartphone out of the otter box, which had melted just a little. I’m a mess, still saying “WTF, how in the hell could I have mistaken my phone for a heating pad”. My husband takes the phone from me, and removes the back off to see if my SIM card or media card have survived. Well the SIM card pretty much melted but my media card seems to be alright. Matt takes my media card and inserts it in his phone, and finds it works perfectly well. There is some good news, my photographs are all there, my contacts, etc., but I’m stunned by what has happened, not knowing whether to laugh or cry.

My Blackberry Z10 after being microwaved

Note: Never ever open the microwave door when there is a fire inside, unplug it. Also never microwave your phone.

I cut the wires – short term memory loss

Last week was a bad week for me. My brain was not working at all. It was all due to fibro fog and perimenopause fog. What happened – the fire alarm happened.

Image of fire alarm on the ceiling.

Beeping fire alarm on the ceiling.

The day before I turned 54, April 9th to be exact, the fire alarm in our son’s room starting beeping, reminding me that it was time to change the battery. This sounds easy, right? Well when your brain is not functioning  properly, this task becomes insanely difficult. First problem, it wouldn’t stop beeping! Do you have any idea how terribly irritating this is, and then you have to remove it from the ceiling, and the damn thing just beeps louder. Alright, it actually doesn’t beep louder, but now your ear is right up there while you are trying to get if off the ceiling which is no easy task.

Image of Twitter conversation on how to remove the fire alarm from the ceiling.

How to remove the fire alarm from the ceiling.

Above is an image of my Twitter conversation regarding the horrible life saving fire alarm, and I did indeed find the largest screwdriver my husband owns to rip it off the ceiling.

What happened next?

Image of fire alarm

I am going to throw the fire alarm outside because of the non-stop beeping.

So throwing it outside did not solve the problem, I could still hear the beep. I brought it back into the house, and tried to figure out what to do. Honestly I did look for batteries in the fire alarm, I turned it over and in plain sight was the opening for the batteries, but I didn’t see it (fibro fog – perimenopause fog).

I phoned my husband at work, who tried his damnest to convince me that there are batteries in this fire alarm, but I don’t believe him. For some reason I am convinced that it had its very own hard-wired mechanism making it beep. (I know now my logic was all wrong, but remember my brain was not working on all its cylinders).

So realizing my husband is no help because he won’t believe my logic, I am determined to stop the beeping anyway I can – and I figure cutting the wires is my only choice. (My husband is telling me not to cut the wires because I would be ruining a perfect almost brand-new fire alarm, I don’t listen to him).

Now I have a new problem, which wires do I cut? Yellow, blue, white? The Twitter conversation got pretty funny at this point, “don’t cut the blue!”

About to cut the wires on the fire alarm

About to cut the wires on the fire alarm

I ended up cutting three wires – the red, white, and blue. The beeping stopped. I was saved!

Note: Even though I ruined a perfectly good fire alarm, which we now have to replace, there are still four fire alarms on the second floor. A hard-wired one in the hallway, and three battery operated alarms in the other bedrooms.