How to Tell If That Beeping Noise Means Your Fridge Is Slightly Ajar or You’re Slowly Dying of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

When you were a kid, the only chirps you heard at home meant your house was on fire. Now, in your overpriced condo full of underutilized “smart” devices, you must navigate hundreds of noises with just minor sonic differences between “this doesn’t really matter” and “you’re in mortal peril.” As your life becomes cluttered with an ever-increasing number of beeps and blurps, this guide may be your only hope for survival.

A Subtle Jingle Ascending in Scale

Your Bluetooth headphones are alerting you to a dying battery with a gentle cry for sustenance. This one is indeed dire. If you don’t act now, you won’t be able to quietly watch 90 Day Fiancé while the rest of your family sleeps.

Two Quick Dings

Your microwave is celebrating—your Hot Pocket is done! Well, kind of. It’s hot, but now it’s also mostly coating your appliance. This wouldn’t have been as much of a problem had you chosen ham and cheese, but you went with meatball, and now there’s red sauce in every little hole of that notably hard-to-reach grate in the back.

A Sound that Can Only be Described as “Blurdle Blurdle”

A new DM is awaiting your attention. Perhaps an old flame has reignited the conversation, or a friend has tagged you in a questionable meme. Either way, you’ll never know which, as this sound emanates from a neglected tab buried amidst your multiple browser windows.

A Crisp, Whimsical Chime

Your smart doorbell wants you to know that someone is violently breaking down your door or your neighbor’s outdoor cat is on the porch again. You were sleeping peacefully, but now you’re looking at an email with a blurry photo that’s probably a cat. Well, now that you’re up, you might as well see what people on Reddit are anxious about.

An Upbeat Digital Tune Followed by a Mechanical Sigh

Your dog started the robot vacuum while you were out and it just finished a cleaning cycle. Or it got stuck under a side table for long enough that the algorithm decided it was time to give up before the battery died.

A Startling Metal Clank

Your husband finally beat that free iPhone game! Well, after paying about $79 for upgrades. That’s right, he finally launched a ragdoll dressed like Borat into the center of that floating candy-colored bullseye. And also the dishes aren’t done.

A Loud, Unending Series of Beeps

You keep looking for a smoke alarm, but nope! That’s your smart fridge reminding you that the door is slightly ajar. This requires your attention now, or you’re going to have to find out what it’s like to drink warm seltzer.

“We Wish You a Merry Christmas” Faintly Playing in the Distance

Someone tinkered with some obscure setting on your washing machine, and now you’ll likely never learn how to revert it back to a simple buzz-buzz. You probably won’t hear this, so this is also a reminder that you’ll need to redo your laundry two days from now.

Two Intermittent Beeps and a Steaming Hiss

Your coffee is brewed! You set it all up the night before so you could wake up to a nice fresh pot. But actually, you didn’t put the filter attachment in at just the right angle, so it ended up blocking the spray head, and hot brown water has just been dripping down your newly painted cabinets for the last hour. Good morning!

A Frantic Series of Loud Chirps

You left the baby monitor under the pillow again and forgot to charge it. It will let you know seconds before it dies, waking up your child in the process.

A Muffled, High-Pitched Shriek Every Minute from Somewhere Far Far Away

The only working carbon monoxide detector is in the basement. You don’t know this, but the dying noise it’s playing is warning you of danger in the air you breathe. You thought you had a ghost, but actually, those were the hallucinations that mean you’re slowly dying. You might want to look into it.

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