My first alarm clock was small and round. It had two brass bells on top and stood on four stubby legs. I bought it because I figured that was what an alarm clock should look like. It worked fine but it wasn’t long before I beat it to death with a shoe.
I did that because it failed to wake me for an important meeting.
My second clock was a sturdier affair. The frame was forged from high tensile steel and its face crafted from the same bullet proof glass used in fighter jets. It didn’t last long either, though it took more than a shoe to kill it.
My third clock was a radio alarm. When I took it out of the box, I did not recall it having a snooze button. I suspect the little guy sprouted it spontaneously after seeing the remains of his peers scattered about my bedroom. Though the button saved its life on many a morning – it also made me late for an important meeting so I gave it the shoe.
The last and final alarm is an app on my cell phone. I had the foresight to know that if the alarm kept sounding I would destroy the phone and this would be costly. I also knew that a snooze button would cost me my job – so I hacked the application code and added an ingenious modification.
After sounding the alarm, the app immediately apologizes and begs for forgiveness – then and only then, does it meekly raise its voice from a soothing whisper to a gentle nag. It reassures me there was no reason to get out of bed, that my calendar is clear and no meetings are scheduled. Once I accept this, it continues in a soft persuasive voice to suggest that perhaps I should consider going to work anyway, just in case someone wants to talk to me.
Of course this is subterfuge – but is not deceit the lubricant that greases the skids of office politics? What better to prepare the mind for a day of meetings?
But now I am retired and have no reason to get up… with one exception.
After I have forgotten to roll the trash cart out to the road the night before… every Wednesday morning at 5:22 am, a soft, soothing voice, ever so gently urges me out of my slumbers to greet the garbage truck.