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Alarm

Posted on Tuesday, May 20th, 2008

Dave!Why is it that technology is making life simpler in every area of creation except when it comes to setting an alarm clock??!?

It used to be that to set the alarm, you press and hold the ALARM button and adjust the hours and minutes until you have the time you want to wake up. Then you slide the OFF/RADIO/BUZZER switch to BUZZER and you're done. That's three out of four buttons and a slider switch until F#@%ING DONE!!!

But not any more.

The alarm clock at my hotel has TWENTY-ONE F#@%ING BUTTONS PLUS A SLIDER SWITCH (for Mega Bass)...

Sony alarm clock with a hideous number of complicated buttons.

To set your alarm you have to go through FIVE STEPS, two of which you have to repeat, which means there's SEVEN F#@%ING STEPS to set an alarm! It's so absurdly complicated that they have to give you an instruction card to figure the shit out...

Complicated instruction card for setting an alarm clock.

FAIL!!!

All the love I used to have for Sony products is gone. Because of this piece of shit alarm clock, I somehow didn't push enough buttons to set the alarm (even though the alarm indicator was lit?). So even though I got up at 4:30am and didn't need to be up until 6:00am, I was counting on the alarm to tell me what time I needed to stop working and get ready. But it didn't. Suddenly the extra time I had given myself to get ready and make it into the city for my meeting had evaporated because it was 6:45 by the time I looked over and noticed something was wrong.

Granted the stupid alarm clock has a CD player in it, but big f#@%ing deal... my iPhone has a MP3 player, clock, map, camera, calendar, calculator, notepad, web browser, and all kinds of other stuff in it... but has TWO BUTTONS!!

Half my kingdom for an Apple-designed alarm clock.

Work was at the delicious All-Candy Expo here in Chicago. I've bored everybody with accounts of all the cool stuff at the show in previous years, so I'll skip all that... but I did see two things that made me squeal like a little girl when I visited the PEZ booth. As long-time readers already know, I love PEZ. LOVE THE PEZ!!!

So imagine my delight when I saw that they are coming out with STAR TREK PEZ!!!

A PEZ collectible Star Trek Set with Original Series crew as PEZ dispensers

As if that wasn't enough, I turned the corner and saw one of the most amazing things ever... CHOCOLATE PEZ!!!

Bags of Chocolate PEZ candies hanging on a rack.

It's as if PEZ is starting to combine all the things I love best in life into a single product family. Next year I'm fully expecting that there will be an Elizabeth Hurley PEZ dispenser waiting for me.

After working the show for a bit, I was free for the day. Just two goals remained...

ONE... Go to America's Dog and get me a veggie-dog done up Chicago style (I was going to just put ketchup on it, but I didn't want to risk the wrath of RW's Hotdog Commandments!)...

A veggie hot dog decked out Chicago-style with mustard, tomatoes, pickle, peppers, and relish in a steamed poppy-seed bun.

TWO... Make up for the shitty experience of watching the horrific movie tragedy known as Speed Racer by going and seeing Iron Man yet again. Which I did, at the magnificent Muvico 18 Theater in Rosemont...

Muvico 18 building at night in Rosemont

I paid for "VIP Premiere Seating" which puts you in the balcony in a huge comfy seat that's reserved for adults only, so you can take a beer into the theater with you! According to Wikipedia, the Muvico 18 Rosemont is the first theater in the country to have Sony SRX 4K digital cinema projectors in all auditoriums, which means the picture quality and sound were frakin' amazing.

This is my third time watching Iron Man, and I can honestly say that I love it more with each new viewing. I'll probably see it two or three more times before it leaves theaters. I just can't help myself. Robert Downey Jr.'s performance is so sublimely awesome in every way... from his impeccable comedic timing to his note-perfect delivery... that I am positively mesmerized by the character of Tony Stark. The fact that the movie RESPECTS THE F#@%ING SOURCE MATERIAL AT EVERY TURN is just icing on the cake. A big thank you to director Jon Favreau for having the intelligence to understand that there's a f#@%ing REASON that iconic comic book characters have endured for so long, and it is insanely arrogant and stupid to reinvent the wheel when you've already got something that works and people want to see.

And what I really need to see right now is a pillow, because I have to be to the airport in 5 hours.

Yay.


Categories: Food 2008, Movies 2008, Travel 2008Click To It: Permalink
   

Comments

  1. jake titus says:

    Great idea, wouldn’t it be nice if Steve J gives you residuals for the new iClock?

  2. ChillyWilly says:

    That is one fucked up alarm clock. The one we have at home is made by Brookstone and has two buttons and a slider switch for setting the alarm. Piece of cake. And it resets the time through the power if power is lost, so we don’t wake up and see 3:12 when it’s really 7:45.

    PEZ is awesome. I have a love for it as well. Those Star Trek dispensers…. must have. Did they have any Indiana Jones? I have an entire Star Wars set sealed in the box and would love to have another George Lucas-inspired creation PEZ collectable next to it.

  3. claire says:

    I hate hotel alarm clocks. Even if I don’t need it set, I try to check that it’s off. And when I forget, it usually goes off at 3:30 AM or the worst part of my sleep cycle. Gargh!

    Yea for Star Trek pez though. Are the chocolate Pez like chocolate or sort of chalky textured like regular Pez?

  4. Winter says:

    Mmmmn. Chocolate Pez. I want the Big Brown Pez dispenser they will come out with once he wins the Triple Crown for the 1st time in 30 yrs. Big Brown… filled with chocolate pez… yum. Ack. I need sweets now.

  5. sizzle says:

    That alarm clock looks so confusing. I’d be all- fuck this, I’m calling the front desk for a wake up call.

  6. Iron Fist says:

    Actually, I hear that Steve Jobs has approached the people at PEZ about releasing the iPez next year. It will also have only two buttons. (And it will feature REAL GPS, too.)

  7. Dave

    Quadruple check the alarm clock before you go to sleep this time ! :-)

    Charlie

  8. RW says:

    You have gone a long way to warm the cockles of my cold, mercenary little heart by following the correct rules for a Chicago-style hot dog. Wonderful.

    It has come down to my saying “OK, you can put ketchup on your hot dog like a six year-old, but then don’t call it ‘Chicago Style’.” you’d be surprised how many self-justifying Heinz recidivists I run into.

    Honest!

  9. I still haven’t seen Iron Man yet. So how much do I suck? I’ll go this weekend for sure. Wait, this weekend is all Indy all the time. Fuck it, Indy and Iron Man.

    Doesn’t your iPhone have an alarm? I don’t even bother setting hotel alarm clocks anymore as my cellphone does a fine job of waking me up.

  10. Colin Brooks says:

    That’s why I never bother with alarm clocks. I used my phone as an alarm clock for a few years and then I switched to Alarm Clock 2 (for Macs) which is simple and awesome. Doesn’t the iPhone have an alarm clock app?

    I still haven’t watched Iron Man. I neeeeeeed to see it but I suppose I’ll wait another 2 weeks until I finish my exams.

  11. I never trust strange alarm clocks. Even when I buy a new one, for the first week, I also set my cell phone alarm clock to go off 5 minutes after the regular alarm clock – just in case. Of course I wake up before both of them, but just in case.

  12. PocketCT says:

    Yeah! The iPhone alarm is way easier than that monstrosity. Who can like sony after the DRM root kit? Not me!

  13. Avitable says:

    I have a Batsignal alarm clock that is very simple, and that’s the way I like it.

    I’m with you on Iron Man. I kidnapped Britt to go see it on Monday, which was the third time for me, and it really is outstanding.

  14. Jon says:

    I finally saw Iron Man last night. (Would have liked to see it before, but I was waiting for a captioned film to be available in my area.) Holy crap, what an amazing film. Love Downey in the role, and although I have never been much of a Gwyneth fan, she looked amazing in that film.
    I can definitely see myself going to see that film again while it’s in theaters. And I almost never do that.

  15. Delmer says:

    I’m pretty sure I have that same alarm clock. I was going to ask if it had a CD player even before you mentioned it.

    It sits unused and unplugged in at the far side of the bed. Another shortcoming (as I recall — like I said, it’s been a while) is no battery backup … if the power goes out you lose your settings and have to do it all over.

  16. jenny says:

    Here’s where I’ll agree 100% with RW. He did not lead you astray… that looks like the perfect Chicago dog!

  17. Michelle says:

    I loved Ironman. And that theatre looks awesome. I’m just happy if the theatre I go to actually makes their popcorn on site and doesnt just poor it out of a bag into the popcorn maker. $6.50 for less then fresh, bagged popcorn pisses me the frak off.

    I hate Sony…… that alarm clock is the least of their sins.

  18. Hilly Sue says:

    You remember the Sony Dream Machine from back in our high school/college days? Now that was a nice, easy to use, awesome alarm clock.

    If I had the alarm clock you had at the hotel? I’d probably still be sleeping!

  19. Finn says:

    1) Does the iPhone have an alarm?
    2) Candy expo? For work? I so hate you.
    3) The Premier is the shit — spoiled me for a regular movie theatre for good.

  20. Tracy says:

    I’m surprised you bothered with the hotel alarm clock (which is WAY out of control, I agree). If your iPhone doesn’t have an alarm, that’s a sad oversight on Apple’s part. I use my cellphone’s alarm whenever I travel.

    In other news, I’m so sad to hear that SPEED RACER sucked! I loved the cartoon as a kid. So sad that THE MATRIX guys were one-hit wonders.

  21. the patient says:

    dude your iPhone has an alarm clock. And no I don’t care if someone said that earlier on in the comments. I’m doing this one the iphone

  22. This is totally ridiculous to admit, but I have to get up at 5 am to take my medicine every single day (not the ridiculous part). The reason I get up to run at that time instead of resetting my alarm for a normal time of about a half hour to an hour later to get up is because I don’t know how to change the time. My alarm clock looks a lot like the one you have pictured so maybe I will give those instructions a try!

  23. My husband got a new alarm clock from Sony, replacing ours from the college days that was just your standard alarm clock. One day, it forgot to wake me up and my daughter was late for school. Another, it woke up the little one way too early when it went off and I couldn’t figure out how to turn the damn thing off. Simplicity is key with alarm clocks.

  24. Lora says:

    My favorite part of the hotel room alarm clock is when the previous user doesn’t bother to turn it off completely and since it’s so hard to figure out whether it’s set of not these days, I don’t notice it’s still ready to go and get woken up at 3am when the alarm starts blaring. And then I don’t know how to turn it off.

  25. kilax says:

    I’ve gotta pick up those Pez for Steven. He would get such a kick out of them!

  26. ajooja says:

    I was just reading one of Kapgar’s posts about the Chicago-style hotdog. God, that looks so good.

    And chocolate Pez? That sounds unbelievable. Wonder if it will make it here. Mmmmmmm.

  27. Jeff says:

    That’s one messed up clock for sure. I also have started using my cell phone because I at least know I can trust that.

    Because of your inspiring review a few weeks ago, I finally took my boys to see Iron Man – and we all loved it! I’m guessing this will be the new benchmark for films to beat for a while now.

  28. This post started out with misery and then morphed its way to GLORIOUS… Beer and Ironman? Rock on!

  29. mew says:

    those pez dispensers are cute!

    your veggie dog looks so good!

    really enjoy Muvico theaters. Ours
    used to have a massive patchwork airship inside!
    the v.i.p seating was never worth it there tho, because some fuck face would bring kids in there and use the enclosed area as a makeshift playground to let them do whatever they wanted. CHAOS! >__

  30. jewelz says:

    …and thus the reason for using the hotel wake-up call service. It’s enough that I’ve learned to use my own alarm clock at home. I don’t have the time/need to re-learn digital clock technology every single time I’m in a hotel room (which I’m not in as often as you are, but average about once a month when I have to go to Lansing for union biz). The wake-up call works for me where the alarm clock fails miserably.

  31. Matt says:

    Okay, I’ll admit it … as soon as I saw the picture of the Chicago-style dog, the rest of the universe turned to grey … I would literally kill someone and sell their organs to have one of those right now, IN CHICAGO … (yeah, my hometown).

    You went to see a movie in Rosemont????? :)

  32. Suzy says:

    Since I sleep with a sound machine wherever I am, my only rule is that the alarm has to be louder than the sound machine, which I always have set to white noise. After traveling the globe, I finally found the simplest travel alarm in St. Petersburg, Florida, in an old fashioned shop run by an 80 year old man who was very sweet.

    At home I use the GPX, the one you see in most TV shows and movies, although I have no idea why. I’m guessing because they’re cheap and work the way you mentioned they should work.

  33. Nicole says:

    The iPhone doesn’t have an alarm?

  34. y not i says:

    My son has that exact same alarm clock in his room. Thankfully, he’s 3, so we haven’t had to master the alarm portion of it yet. It works just fine as a fancy-looking clock with a bonus CD player.

  35. Göran says:

    Star Trek Pez *drools*

  36. Catherine says:

    I don’t know thing one about the source material (okay, I didn’t know until I read this blog post that there WAS source material), but I went to see that movie this afternoon? LOVED it, just a great piece of work on every count (that I knew how to measure :P). I agree with you about RDJ’s acting; I have to wonder if that is not the best performance he has ever done. I haven’t seen ‘em all, but I bet it is. And this guy? Fucking amazing. Brilliant casting.

  37. Lisa says:

    Veggie dog? How do you find all these great “veggie ” foods?

    I feel the need to reproduce that dog.

    Why don’t you just use the alarm on your iPhone? I use mine all of the time and it never fails me…you just don’t have the option for snooze.

    The candy shows…I’m all about chocolate covered or any kind of covered coffee/espresso beans. Just saying.

    Oh, and anything gummi.

  38. Lewis says:

    I feel your pain, man. Seriously. You + Me + Hotels + These Alarm Clocks = One hell of a nightmare. i stick to my phone’s alarm and a wake-up call.

  39. Ren says:

    I use my phone’s alarm clock when traveling, but at home I have switched to an iHome iH9. I really like its system for setting the alarm time, which uses an iPod-esque wheel. I do miss having day-specific alarms (various Palm alarm programs), but at least it lets me choose between “every day”, “weekdays” and “weekends” for each of the two alarms that it supports.

  40. whall says:

    I really liked Iron Man also and plan on seeing it at least once more in the theatres, which is very rare for me.

  41. Teraforce says:

    What’s so ironic about that Sony clock radio is that back in the early to mid 1980′s, Sony produced a line of “EZ Alarm” clock radios. They are BY FAR the easiest alarm clocks to use. There are two big knobs on the front panel–one for hours, the other for minutes (in 5-minute increments). You simply turn those 2 knobs to the desired alarm time, then you push a yellow button down (or slide a switch on later models) to turn the alarm on! You can even hit the “dream bar” to view the alarm time, just to be sure you set the knobs correctly!

    Why Sony quit making the EZ Alarm models and switched to the ones you had to deal with is BEYOND me.

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