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    OMG, with the fire department

    January 25, 2008

    I would like to speak to the rocket scientist who puts smoke alarms in kitchens.  Seriously.  WTH???  I guess Martha never gets smoked out but let’s be honest here.  I can promise you that every single time I make chicken marsala?  Smoke alarm.  It’s an issue with cooking the chicken in barely smoking oil.  Yeah, you try to keep it to barely smoking.  It’s not burning and the chicken tastes phenom, but still the smoke alarm goes off.  I learned to combat this in the old house by just taking the battery out.  I thought this was a brilliant idea.  Until, of course, the home inspector for the buyer came and busted my ass.  The Husband was PISSED. 

    D:  How LONG has the battery been out?
    K:  Ever since I started making chicken marsala?
    D:  Since we got married? 
    K:  Um……..yeah.   Pretty much.  No, wait.  I think I was making chicken marsala before we got married. 

    We then moved into a house that has a hard-wired smoke alarm.  Which means that even if the alarm is off, if the smoke alarm goes off, you get a call from the alarm company.  The smoke alarm is of course located in the kitchen that has no exhaust fan.  Apparently they made it under the wire in 1987 for those pesky regulations that require you pump toxic fumes OUT of the kitchen.  If the guy who put in the alarm system was here now, I would kick him in the shins.  Because the damn alarm goes off.  Sometimes. 

    Today I was making pot roast and the SOB went off.  I ran over to the keypad and punched in the numbers to cancel the call.  I went to get my cell phone for the inevitable call which never came.  It never came because the alarm was so loud, I never actually heard the phone ring.  The Husband called 10 minutes later to tell me he got a message that the fire department was on its way to the house.  My phone began to ring incessantly and finally my sister gave up and TWITTERED me about my house burning down.  I guess she assumed that with my I-Phone and Twitter, I would be kept in the know about all things related to my impending homelessness.  I finally called the alarm company myself.  The guy at the other end was PISSED.

    Guy:  What is your code?

    I gave it to him and told him I needed to cancel the call.

    Guy:  Well, you can’t cancel the call.  What’s your number?

    I gave it to him.  He couldn’t hear it because SOMEONE, and I won’t cast any stones, was clanging two pot tops together like a lunatic.


    I gave them to him again.  The clanging was unbearable.

    K:  SHUT THE HELL UP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    K:  You know what?  I need that beer as much as you need it today.  So simmer down.  I’m doing the best I can here.  Now you understand why I didn’t hear your damn call 10 minutes ago.

    He laughed.  I didn’t.

    I didn’t laugh because if I sent my alarm off by going out the door, my entering the code cancels the arrival of the police.  So if someone holds a gun to my head and makes me turn my alarm off, the police will never come.  But if I feel the desire to make my husband delirious with pleasure by making him pot roast on a cold Friday, I am going to have to explain myself to my children, the alarm company AND the local volunteer fire department that showed up 2 minutes later.  Volunteer being the key word.  Volunteer meaning they were hoping for a raging FIRE and all they got was a false pot roast alarm. 

    Poor boys. 

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    1. Izzy says:

      You kill me!

      You know what else? those smoke alarms that are hard-wired all beeps when the battery on one dies. It’ll just about give you a heart attack when it happens in the middle of the night. And then good luck finding a battery… and then you’ll need even more luck finding the one that needs the battery. Mmm-hmmm.

      January 25th, 2008 at 8:12 pm

    2. Sky says:


      Because my smoke alarm goes off whenever I cook, (and it’s not in the kitchen), thank God it doesn’t ring the fire dept, although those firefighters are hot. Anyway…at 5 my neighbor called over to my son who was playing outside, and asked if everything was okay she could here the smoke alarms…he replies back. Yeah, it means Ma is almost done with dinner. Thank you dear child of mine.

      January 25th, 2008 at 9:12 pm

    3. Kel says:

      Hard-wired smoke alarms….curse and blessing. I guess if your house is really on fire it’s a good thing, but let’s face it…how often is that gonna happen?? Mine are not only hard-wired but also at the peak of my vaulted ceilings that you can’t reach with a freakin’ extension ladder. So, on top of the screaching frickin’ alarm, I also nearly go into spasms flailing my arms around in the air with pillows trying to swish the smoky air away from the damn thing and out the window. Gotta love all the windows open during a MN winter (30 below zero), jumping around the house like an idiot, 3 kids screaming because the damn alarm has scared them into the next county, and the neighbors wondering WTH is going on next door this time! I feel your pain!

      January 25th, 2008 at 10:14 pm

    4. Elizabeth says:

      One time I almost called the fire department because smoke was flooding out of my dryer vent and I was afraid that something was on fire inside there… luckily I realized it was just the steam of the hot air reaching the cold outside before I called anyone…well except my roommate at the time who laughed her butt off at me!

      January 26th, 2008 at 12:10 pm

    5. Amy says:

      So you didn’t invite them to stay for dinner? It was the least you could do for not having a raging fire for them to put out!

      January 26th, 2008 at 3:42 pm

    6. Manic Mommy says:

      That’s how you know the meal’s done.

      Except? Potroast? It’s like, all liquid-y and stuff. How’d you make smoke??

      RC called 911 at 7 months. Police, Fire, and Paramedics! OH MY!

      January 26th, 2008 at 4:06 pm

    7. Leanne says:


      Yep, I do this too. I then spend ten minutes waving a darn dish towel at the thing to make it stop going off.

      When it goes off my kids now come and sit at the table.

      Smoke alarm at my house? To my kids it means dinner is ready.

      Hubby wants to hook us up to one of those alarm things. I think not.

      January 27th, 2008 at 2:53 pm

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