Sometimes it seems like we're living in a world of electronic nannies. Alarm clocks, phones, and every other kind of reminder known to man or beast keep going off. First there's the app I put on my phone to remind me to keep drinking water through the day. (I've been told I don't drink enough, hehehe.) So this reminder keeps reminding me dutifully enough by producing on my phone the sound of a very loud drink of water being poured. And this I appreciate, except for the fact that it pours water even while I'm on a phone call. The other party once asked me in alarm, "What's that???" "Er," I had to answer foolishly, "It's er...that is, I have....uh..."
Well it's not for nothing that I've named the water app the Sea Hag. She's never satisfied no matter how much I update her. Always gargling at me, the fiend. Then there's the seat belt reminder in our car, of course every car has it but that's of no consequence here. No sooner has your posterior touched the seat and you are in the process of belting up, that it starts to go off in a most high-pitched way. It always gives me the horrible impression that an explosion of some sort is imminent. Sigh. And not to mention that blessed fire alarm in our apartment. Last year one time there was a wisp of smoke, a wisplet really, that went up just before J turned off the oven. That was it, the alarm began. "Fah-yer" she intoned in her insistent way, "Fah-yer". (The lack of urgency in the tone was particularly chilling when combined with the persistence). We scrambled around to open doors and windows and flapped our arms in front of her face but she wouldn't let up. "Fah-yer," she continued, relentless, "Fah-yer." For this performance she has earned the name Dame Naggie Smith.
Also last year was that one occasion in San Diego when J and I were waiting to cross a street. Cars were still going so obviously we weren't about to leap into the traffic. But no. We had to be told, to "WAIT". This from an extremely aggressive masculine voice issuing from the walk button. "WAIT, WAIT!" he carried on. Finally the tape got stuck, and he went, "WAIT, W-W-W-W-WAIT" making him sound extremely unsure but extremely insistent at the same time. We're still a bit scarred by him, I think. There are times in L.A. that we will imagine we hear the same voice shouting at us while we wait at the crossing. Still, it's preferable to the free-for-all and all-are-free-to-die method of street crossing that one follows back in India I suppose. Pugilistic electronic nanny seems a shade better than death by flattening on M.G. Road, but just a shade.