Tick, tick, tick, tick… boom!


This column is about having a hard time getting up in the morning, and for once I’m not talking about sex. Mornings are tough, but winter mornings are impossible. Some people make them look easy, they bound out of bed with smiles on their faces and springs in their step. I hate those people.

Some of them don’t even need alarm clocks. They’ll tell you smugly how they wake up naturally, their body clocks gently nudging them into consciousness when it’s time to get up.

The only thing I hate more than these people are those mornings when you don’t need to wake up but your eyes pop open at six anyway. Set your alarm clock for that time and it’s another story, when the buzzer goes off you’re always in the middle of your deepest, darkest REMS. It’s those mornings when a snooze button comes in handy.

I’m a snooze button abuser, my alarm clock does this thing where the snooze gets shorter. So it starts out with a ten minute snooze, then it lets you have five minutes, then four minutes, all the way down to going off every thirty seconds, then every ten seconds. I don’t know what difference I think an extra ten seconds is going to make, but in mid-winter when it’s cold and dark out there, I’ll take every ten seconds I can get.

I think I wouldn’t mind my alarm clock so much if it was just slightly less screechy. It’s 2013, we have a female M in James Bond and cats for mayors, the least we could do is invent a more pleasant daily arousal method.

So I started thinking about how I’d like to wake up every day. And came up with the idea of an alarm clock that wakes you up with the smell of bacon cooking, which would be a lot more enjoyable than the current sound of a cat being murdered with a violin at ten second intervals.

As I got further into R&D for the bacon-o-clock I thought we could even bring out a kosher version, the macon-o-clock, or a vegetarian one, the tofu-o-clock, which would emit the smell of hemp or patchouli instead of bacon.

Or what about a swearing alarm clock that uses voice recognition software? When it goes off you have to shout as many swear words you can at it. When you hit a pre-programmed amount of unique non-repeated swear words it stops buzzing. It’s pretty much what I do every morning anyway, only in my imaginary version the swearing actually makes the alarm stop alarming.

Champagne, I thought! I finally cracked a great invention that would make me millions so I’d never have to use an alarm clock ever again.

But then I looked on the net and discovered a bunch of geeks have already come up with some pretty wild alarm clocks. In a strangely ironic twist, I woke up too late.

There’s the Nixie Ramos (Shall we assume Nixie Ramos is the inventor?) It rings for ten seconds, then gives you a minute to enter the day’s date as a code. Fail to enter it in time, or get it wrong and it shoots you in the face with a glock. I kid I kid, it’s just a siren that goes off. The glock would be more effective, but I guess a siren works too.

The Clocky Robotic Alarm doesn’t have as fancy a name, but it does have all terrain features. At wake up time it tears around your room making the most annoying beeping sound (think a duck on crack) and you have to get up and race around the room at speed till you catch it to turn it off.

The Carpet Alarm Clock is slightly less energetic. All you have to do is have both feet placed firmly on the floor to get it to stop. It’s pretty smart, everyone knows that once you’re up, you’re up.

The SnuzNLuz started out as an April fool’s joke, but it could actually work well. You connect your alarm clock to your online bank account and link it to an organisation you can’t stand, or your best frenemy. Then the longer you take to turn it off, the more money you donate.

And the last one that caught my eye was the IQ Clock. If you want it to stop bleating you have to solve a tricky equation or answer a tough question correctly. Although I’ve found a giant flaw in this thinking. All the smart people would just turn it off quickly, roll over and go back to sleep, and then nobody would ever invent anything new ever again, and you’d be stuck with my bacon and swearing alarm clocks.


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