Thursday, January 27, 2005

How long are things supposed to last?

I'm a little perturbed. I moved into a new apartment at the end of June. And I mean brand-spanking new. I'm the first tenant in this apartment. I've never been the first tenant anywhere before. But the newness thing is loosing some of it's appeal, in part because things are starting to happen.

Nothing major, just little annoying things. Things that I wouldn't expect in a new apartment.

I took a little vacation in December. I returned home on a late flight, getting home sometime after 11 p.m. after enduring a delay in San Francisco due to weather. I got in the front door, and was getting settled when I hear it.


Every few minutes. This annoying, electronic, high-pitched chirp. It took me a few moments to figure out that it was the smoke detector in my bedroom. Dead battery. Now I don't know when that battery was actually installed in that smoke detector, but it couldn't have been must more than about 6 months earlier, since they were still putting some finishing touches on the apartment when I was looking to move in. Shouldn't a smoke detector battery last longer than 6 months?

So I dismantle the damn thing and take out the battery, thinking I could replace it in the morning. Besides, it's one of those smoke detectors where the batter is only the backup, and it's wired into the electricity. Well, that didn't work, because removing the battery didn't stop the chirping.


Can't sleep with that annoying chirp every few minutes. I briefly contemplate closing the bedroom door and sleeping on the couch. But the apartment isn't that big and I can still hear the chirp in the living room.

Crap! Crap!

So, having been home a grand total of 10 minutes, I'm heading back out the door to buy a battery for the smoke detector. Welcome home buddy!

Not exactly a crisis. Just annoying. I hate annoying. I get more than my daily dose of annoying simply by working for a living.

Now today a light bulb burns out in the dining room light fixture. It poofed out in the spectacular last gasp flash of light way that lightbulbs have of dying. Like someone ramped up the juice in the outlet, and the fragile filament couldn't handle the extra power. If you are going to go out, go out with a bang.


Fortunately, the fixture is one of those multi-bulb fixtures, so I won't have to sit in the dark until I can get a new bulb. Unfortunately, the fixture has those clear bare-bulb lights in it. I'm betting that the odds of finding a bulb that's an exact match are slim to none. How white trash is that to have a light fixture without matching bulbs in it? And shouldn't a light bulb last more than 7 months? The first apartment I lived in in Palm Springs had decorative bulbs in the bathroom and the dining area. I lived there for 4 years. I never had to change any of those bulbs.

Again. Annoying.

I wouldn't think twice about such things if I had moved into an older complex. Who knows how long batteries or bulbs have been in the fixtures when you move into an apartment. But a brand new place?

Crap. Crap. Crap!


Brat said...

I keep asking myself the same questions about my body. "I swear I a too young to have that! You must be mistaken. I think you have the wrong room Doc."

MJ said...

Actually, I think you're supposed to change smoke detector batteries every 6 months. I use the bi-annual time change as a reminder. Change the clocks, change the batteries. I can't remember who I picked that up from, but it's handy. As for your bulb issue, check out Lowes. They have the biggest selection in town. Good luck!

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