Chirp chirp…beep…*BaNG*

14 August, 2010
Rat Fink

That is the sound of someone enabling his asinine and completely irksome and useless car alarm, followed by me visiting the hood of the vehicle with a 16-pound sledge hammer.

Bang. It’s dead.

Few things annoy me more than car alarms. (Can you tell?) And I got my reasons. Behold:

1. They’re loud. Have you ever been in a parking lot when someone clickety-clicks the remote and the horn blasts right in your face when you’re not expecting it? Now I’m not a violent person, but believe me when I tell you that when it happens to me, I see red. I have to resist the knee-jerk urge to exact immediate revenge. Maybe get one of those cans of air-horn and sneak up behind Miss Clickety-Click. Zing! Like in the old cartoons, when someone scares the snot out of a cat and it ends up hanging from the ceiling by its claws. That’ll do the deed for ya.

2. They’re trigger-happy. Car alarms have cried “Wolf” so many times, they’re considered by many to be little more than noise polluters that go on tirades every time a bird flies overhead. Honestly, if you’re in a store or church or the bank and you hear a car alarm, do you run out and see whose automobile might be getting stolen — even if it might be YOURS? No. Everybody knows the blaring, hair-trigger alarms go off all the time without reason. It’s ridiculous to be at a concert or other public venue and watch a dozen people fumble for their key fobs when the stupid things go off.

3. They don’t deter theft. From an article about a study done by New York-based public transit advocate Transportation Alternatives: “Organized professionals now account for 80% of stolen cars, and alarms don’t deter them at all.” In fact, a 1997 study of 73 million auto theft insurance claims revealed that cars with alarms showed “no overall reduction in theft losses” than those without. GM and Ford have begun to phase them out of factory installation altogether.

I do apologize to my fiends who adore their chirp-chirp-beep devices. Different strokes and all that. But why can’t people just press the power lock when they get out of the car (if you’re lucky enough to have power locks)? Then the doors will be locked, and your garden variety thief will be deterred. Case in point: I never used to lock my car doors when I’d park in my garage for the night. [I live in a 94-year-old house, whose stand-alone garage was built in 1937. It’s not a secure building by any means.] I came out one morning to go to school and discovered that a thief had tried to remove my CD player. Apparently, something spooked him off (maybe a barking dog or a neighbor who’d heard something) and my CD unit was left dangling from its cubby hole. That learned me right quick. Now I lock my car doors, and nothing’s ever been stolen.

The bottom line: if a pro thief wants your car, he’ll probably get it. And all the screaming, yammering honking in the world won’t deter him. It will, however,  make your neighbors want to choke the life out of you.

:-)

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Mavis
Mavis
14 August, 2010 8:43 am

I couldn’t agree with you more! I have one of those annoying alarms on my car – not by choice, mind. I have been one of the unfortunates that walked by a car when someone hit their alarm. Good thing I’m not at the senior diaper stage yet. I have found one (and only one) good use for the silly thing. If I forgot where I parked my car at Wally – clickety-click!

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Greg
Greg
14 August, 2010 10:17 am

I used to set off mine in the school parking lot when kids were walking by my truck. It was great to see them jump in the air. Bear in mind—I’ll be watching for you!!!

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BoomR
BoomR
14 August, 2010 10:39 am

The ones that REALLY get me are the alarms with a built-in mass sensor. If you come within say, 3 feet of someone’s car equipped with that extra feature, it’ll chirp-chirp to let you know that you’re coming too-close-for-the-owner’s-comfort. UGH….. THOSE are the ones that I want to throw a rock at (but you didn’t hear it from me!) :-)

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RD
RD
14 August, 2010 12:16 pm

A couple of times I’ve set off the alarm on my car while it was parked in the the lot at the office. I had the remote in my pocket and inadvertently pressed it against something, probably while standing at my desk. But accidental or not, I entertained (?) the other staff and the neighbors for a little while. I’ve heard alarms go off on cars in parking lots, and no one pays any attention. I’m not surprised that highly sophisticated and expensive research studies have shown the obvious — that these alarms are extremely noisey, but worthless. More noise… Read more »

Suzanne
14 August, 2010 2:40 pm

Always good to read a finkalicious vent! When I visit my mom I sleep in a bedroom that is near a parking lot. In the morning I would hear people coming and parking and then beep-beep went their horns. WTH I thought? Took me a few days to realize people were locking their cars and their horns would beep. And, of course, it was early in the morning (carpoolers).

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