The smoke detector in my unit began beeping around 4:50 yesterday afternoon. Not one loud long beep, but a sharp beep at every few second intervals.
Great, thought I. It would happen after the office closed.
Just on the off chance someone might be working overtime, I walked over, but no. They were all outta here at 4:00.
The Head Maintenance Guy lives just over the office, but he doesn’t give a damn, so I knew better than to ask and incur his anger and hear him repeat his mantra … “I’m off the clock!!!”
When Handsome Guy had glued himself to me at the potluck, one of the things he’d talked about was having a problem with his smoke detector after hours, which he’d resolved by removing the battery.
I really didn’t want to ask him for help, because I didn’t want to seem to be encouraging him and didn’t want him to know which unit I lived in. Not that I was worried about him being a bad guy, but because I didn’t want him misconstruing my calling on him for help as interest and, knowing where I live, give him the opportunity to stop by.
But the constant beeping was annoying, so I bit the bullet and knocked on Handsome Guy's door.
He followed me right over, detached the smoke detector cover from the ceiling, opened the battery compartment and removed the battery.
Didn’t work. Still beeping.
He decided I needed a replacement battery. Not having one, I said I’d go to Rite Aid, pick one up and, now that I saw how he opened up the battery case, felt confident I could handle the rest by myself.
He left his telephone number to call for further assistance just in case.
I was wrong. I couldn't handle it myself because, after I put in a new battery, the smoke detector kept right on beeping.
No way was I going to call on Handsome Guy again, so I called the Emergency Line.
It was the Assistant Maintenance Guy’s (AMG) turn to be on-call and he didn’t want to do his job. He asked me to disconnect the back-up by pulling out the plastic thing that housed the wires and wait until today. I tried, but couldn’t disconnect, at which point AMG said he’d call Handsome Guy to come back.
If I had called Handsome Guy, he would have come. However, Handsome Guy doesn’t like AMG, and for sure would have been aghast at being asked to do AMG's job for him; so knowing this, getting a headache from the constant beeping, I grabbed the Go Bag I’d prepared when we had that last fire on Little Mountain and authorities told us to standby to evacuate, took off and spent the night in a hotel.
Arriving back this morning, around 9:30, I found the smoke detector exactly as I'd left it.
Dangling from wires, still beeping.
Why is it so hard to get people to do the job they’re paid to do?
At any rate, I marched downstairs. Community Manager was busy with the Lady that Wants Braids, but Assistant Manager was available.
“How are you?” she asked.
“Good. Just got back from spending the night at a hotel because my smoke detector kept beeping”.
“Did you call the Emergency Line?”
“Yes, T___ (AMG) told me to disconnect it, unplug the wires.”
She got a puzzled look on her face.
“Why he told you that? … You’re not supposed to touch anything … That’s dangerous”.
AMG is in deep Bandini. Might even get a write-up for not only not responding to an emergency situation while on-call but telling a senior to perform a dangerous maintenance duty.
I know AMG is done with working here, has gotten into arguments with Head Maintenance Guy, walked off the job a couple times, is looking for a new job but, thus far, always comes back in a day or two or three; but he may not be allowed to come back next time or, with stunts like this, is on his way to being asked to leave.
At any rate, Head Maintenance Guy showed up and put in a new battery around 10:45.
I had him show me how to properly disconnect the smoke detector from the wires (there’re two little clips on the side) and which way to insert the plus minus 9 Volts.
Even though I’m not to touch anything, I won’t be sitting around waiting on Maintenance, or escaping to a hotel, next time -- and there's always a next time.