Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Car Alarms

I am this -----><---- close to running up to the next person who accidentally sets off their car alarm, yelling, "ARE YOU STEALING THIS CAR?!?!?"

I won't do it, of course, because not one of them would be amused, and there's no reason to annoy people for the fun of it.

But, is any modern invention as worthless as a car alarm? Do you know of anyone - ever - who called the cops or asked the person who set off the alarm what's going on?

Then again, I live in a relatively crime-free town, so maybe those whose car is their only big deal possession might like them.

But where I've lived - heck come to think of it, even when I lived in some pretty dicey places (I don't think I've related the story where some chick was whacked on something and the two guys she was attacking pushed her down two flights of stairs, so she stabbed on of them, and oddly the ambulance wouldn't take her, so she wandered in the parking lot screaming for hours), people don't even turn their heads in the direction of a car alarm going off.

Only folks like me who have babies napping in the car pay attention to car alarms anymore, I think.

My last encounter with the unholy warble of futility was at the post office where I was in the car with MPC2 as she was trying to drift off. A young guy came out and began to mount some sort of late-model Chevy Speck and the alarm went off. Of course, MPC2 little arms and legs shot out like someone had poked her with a cattle prod. I can't imagine that kind of car came with a car alarm, so someone installed it on purpose. That's kind of like putting a chastity belt on Rosie O'Donnell - y'know, trying to protect something that really isn't in danger in the first place.

Apparently, I'm not alone in my dislike of the things.


Whisky Prajer said...

I don't just assume the alarmed car is safe as houses, I wholeheartedly wish someone was wreaking genuine havoc on it. When I lived in downtown Toronto, it seemed like every car on the curb had one. I can remember one summer's day when an unexpected crack of thunder set off several dozen alarms at once - it felt like I was living inside a pinball machine. Then there was my Italian neighbor who, every Saturday at about 3:00 a.m., would stand beneath my window and talk loudly to his brother while fondling his car keys and pressing the "arm/disarm" button like a nervous tic. Any society that doesn't know the actual value of a car alarm is not a society that should have inexpensive cell-phones until it learns a few lessons in common civility.

The Opinionated Homeschooler said...

Funny, I'd been thinking recently just how rare car alarm set-offs have become in Central Texas since the '80's. Maybe the frequency of hard thunderstorms and freak hail just convinced everyone they were a bad idea.

I protect my car against theft by leaving it unlocked at night, with no valuables. Once or twice a year the change cup in the front is emptied out and left on the seat, but I've been one of the few people in our neighborhood not to have their car window broken in at night.

Yahmdallah said...

I knew a guy who had an expensive radio/CD player thang, and it got stolen so often that the insurance company said they'd only cover him if he either left his car unlocked (they cover the window but not the radio) or always took the radio with him.

I found this out one day by asking, "So, I notice you always have your car stereo...."