Writing process

My clock is fighting back

This is not a picture of my new clock. This one is a lot more futuristic, but I swear the AI inside my clock loves soothing world music.

My alarm clock died. It was an old am/fm clock radio I’d had for years. Probably at least ten. I mean, how often do you think to change your clock radio? For a while I did the modern thing—used my phone as an alarm instead—but it was tedious having to pick up the phone to see the time when I was used to waking up and glancing at the clock. Anyway, nights were for charging phones, not using it, and the charger was in the other room.

So I bought a new clock.

A new DAB radio, and I could connect through to my phone onto if I wanted to, with lots of features. Want to have a weekday alarm and a weekend alarm? Yes, please. (I know, some people would turn the weekend alarm off, but I like waking to music.)

I followed the instructions. Set the time.  Pre-set stations. Set the alarms.

It was so easy to set up.

It took time to work out what stations I wanted to hear. I want a mix of old and new music, with a bit more emphasis on the new. (Middle-of-the-road if such a term still exists.)  News on the half-hour, weather. Not too much talkback.

Talkback drives me crazy when I’m just waking up.  And before my radio died it only got one station for six months. A golden-oldies station that stopped at the Beatles era.  About then, if I never heard a fifties song again, I’d have been happy.  Especially when they all sounded so tinny on my old, dying radio.

I chose a weekday station and set the alarm.  Again, it was easy.

Now for the weekend station.  What should I choose?

I scroll through my options.  Chill.  What’s that?  I check out the details.  The soothing sounds of world music.

I like world music.  Soothing sounds.  I imagine the music they play at meditation groups and when you go to the beautician.  What about waking up to that?  I can lie in bed and relax for half an hour before I get up.

I listen to half a song. Not great, but okay.

I set my weekend alarm an hour later than weekdays.  I don’t want to sleep in too late, but I want some sleep in.

I’m all done, and it was so simple.

For the next week I enjoy waking up to an alarm I can hear, an alarm that doesn’t play fifties music. Bliss.

Then comes the weekend.

I’m dragged awake by the most awful music.  I listen to it for half an hour and pull myself out of bed. I can’t listen any more.

Next day, it’s the same.

Two weeks of this and I know I have to change it.  I scramble out of bed and find the first station with a song I like.  Bliss.  I’m so happy I go back to sleep.

Next day the alarm comes on.  Guess what it’s playing?


This time I go back to the setup guide that came with the clock. I follow the instructions exactly as per the guide.  I select my station, set the alarm.  Next day, what comes up?


I change the pre-programmed station, wipe Chill off the pre-programmed stations.  Reset the weekend alarm and wait a week.

Come Saturday morning.


It’s as if there’s some malevolent demon inside the clock and really likes Chill music.  But I am not going to let this clock beat me.  I’ll keep trying.

I will un-chill.

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