Ring-a-Ding-Ding, I Do Hate This Thing!

Our ring, our unwanted alarm clock!

The sound of glass breaking. Once, then twice. I roll over, squinting to view the digital clock on my bedside cabinet. 2:37 a.m. I know from experience that no one is breaking one of the glass panels in our paneled front door. I know it is only the Ring app on Barb’s phone–the latest in modern security–letting us know a fern from our potted plant is waving past the sensor at our entrance. It’s another dream disturbed, another good night sleep lost.

Remember when we built this house five years ago, the original raison d’ĂȘtre for this blog? We put some technology in: wi-fi and soundbars and an electronic door lock. We have added tech through the years: Alexa now allows Google to track our every move and utterance, and we have a nifty motorized window shade. But we had resisted Ring.

Our front and side doorbells were nothing fancy. If someone pushed the doorbell button, Westminster chimes played. The tones were slightly different for the two doors, though I admit the dogs learned which tone was for which door better than I did. We would then stand, walk to the appropriate door and open it. Just like it has been done for millions of years.

A few months ago, while having some Wi-Fi updating done, we succumbed to temptation and had the Ring doorbell/security cameras installed, and added the app to our iPhones and Apple watches. And gave away a little bit of our sanity.

My wrist now vibrates every time Barb takes Cooper out for a walk. I get a tingle every time Barb goes out to water the flowers. I am alerted every time a goose waddles by and whenever debris gets blown by one of the doors.

Yes, I also now know important things such as every time FEDEX or Amazon makes a delivery to our home. But unlike many of our neighbors, we don’t do all that much online ordering. So far, deliveries have accounted for less than 1% of all the alerts–and the most frequent of those deliveries has been Lou Malnati’s Pizzas. And believe me, I don’t need an app to be watching for those particular deliveries (donations of thick-crust cheese and pepperoni, well done, gladly accepted!)

Yes, the installer gave us tips for minimizing all the nuisance notifications, but spoiler alert, the tips haven’t helped. Yes, I could totally turn the alerts off. Then what was the point of getting the contraptions in the first place? Good question!

So if I seem a little blurry-eyed on many a morning, if I keep checking my watch as another alert blazes through, you now know what’s going on. It’s just my head Ringing.

(Added note: I have received approximately 14 alerts while writing this blog. Ouch!)


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