The Death Of Beeping Things And Four Blues Songs

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Have you ever been prevented from concentrating on something by a repetitive noise, only you didn’t know you were being prevented from concentrating on something?

It took about two days for me to realize I couldn’t concentrate on writing because the sound beacon attached to the crosswalk lights outside my window was broken, and the electronic pulse had been repeating for thirty seconds out of every minute.

…every minute for twenty-four hours a day, for ten days before the municipality finally called the beeping repair guys.

So for ten days I was unable — even with the Seroquel — to get into a deep sleep. Plus I had to deal with County employees who had no idea what was going on.

When my girlfriend called the County office last week, they told her everything had been fixed. But nothing had been fixed. They even told her they had dispatched a County crew, but we later found out the maintenance is only done by a company from Ottawa. When my neighbour from up the street called the County office they told him the sound beacon was working perfectly — even though it hadn’t turned off in a week.

So take someone who has been sleep deprived because something is broken, then tell them over and over there’s nothing broken — my frustration levels hit new and unexpected highs over the weekend.

I did do one thing incredibly stupid and unforgivable last week, because I was so tired. And I’m trying to figure out how to write about it, but I’m not ready yet.

…but no one’s dead, and the damage turned out to be fairly minimal. I’m still in shock over it, but other than that everything seems fine.

Anyway. After receiving dozens of phone calls, each one more irate than the previous, the County finally called the repair people in Ottawa, and they came down three hours later and fixed the beeping thing.

Three fucking hours to fix a problem they knew about for ten fucking days.

So I finally slept from Monday* afternoon, until Tuesday afternoon. I swear, in the time between the beeping thing being fixed and my falling asleep, I could still hear that fucking beeping noise in the background.

Ten freaking days I put up with that beeping sound, and I haven’t found a decent outlet for my frustration yet. I can feel it in the back of my head, I just want to sit here typing out obscenities until my fingers bleed.

So, anyway, that’s why I haven’t written anything here. I did manage to write a post on the other blog, but that was early Monday morning, and it was mostly about the fucking beeping thing.

I do have video / audio of the beeping thing going off, but I stupidly included the signs for the intersection where I live in it… kind of hard to remain the partially anonymous enigma that I have become when my street address is splashed on my blog.

So, think of the sound a truck or bus makes when backing up… then get German electronica pioneers Kraftwerk to run it through a synthesizer to make it sound less organic, then up the volume by thirty percent and, while you’re listening to it, think about the time you tried to convince an idiot of something so simplistic it made your eyes bleed when they couldn’t grasp the concept — and the truck or bus keeps backing up for ten fucking days, while you and the idiot walk and talk beside the truck and your eyes are bleeding.

That’s about a tenth as annoying the sound was in real life.

Anyway. I should have something substantial later this week. In the meantime, here’s some Blues music from the Old School… musically speaking, this is were life began:

Blind Willie Johnson,
“Dark Was the Night (Cold Was the Ground)”; ‘Dark Was the Night’ (1927/2009)

Muddy Waters,
“Mannish Boy”; single (1955)

Reverend Gary Davis,
“Samson and Delilah”; ‘Harlem Street Singer’ (1960)

Magic Sam,
“Sweet Home Chicago”; ‘West Side Soul’ (1967)

*Monday morning is when the County started removing the old sidewalk just on the other side of the street from my bedroom window… with jackhammers and backhoes. Construction lasted until Tuesday afternoon.




About Gabriel...

...diagnosed with manic depression when I was nineteen, for the next 14-years I lived without treatment or a recovery plan. I've been homeless, one time I graduated college, I've won awards for reporting on Internet privacy issues, and a weekly humour column. In 2002 I finally hit bottom and found help. It's now 2022, and I have an 8-year old son, and a 12-year old son... I’m usually about six feet tall, and I'm pretty sure I screwed up my book deal. I mostly blog at
This entry was posted in Bipolar Disease, Bipolar Disorder, crazy people with no pants, Health, Living With Depression, Living With Manic Depression, Mental Health and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to The Death Of Beeping Things And Four Blues Songs

  1. nick108 says:

    Just love those blues, puts me in the right mood to go into the studio and ‘create’ from the heart, some tracks sound likes the Stones might have ripped them off, and everybody else, Led Zepplin, ahhhh they were the days of real music. Thanks.

  2. Gabriel... says:

    Hi Nick… and you’re very welcome. I think, in those four songs, you have the complete music catalogue of the entire first wave of the British music invasion of North America. Definitely the Stones and Zeppelin, but also the Beatles, Dusty Springfield, Fleetwood Mac, The Searchers, Gerry and the Pacemakers, The Yardbirds, Cream, the Dave Clark Five, the Animals, Spencer Davis Group — w. Steve Winwood, Moody Blues, the Troggs and Donovan.

  3. Yo is Me says:


    i just saw your bleeping header. i am terrified of butterflies. no joke. ohmygod.

  4. Yo is Me says:

    sorry about the beeping. i hate it. and i hate it when i can’t stop it. i started throwing rocks at the chirping birds at midnight. then i got a fan thingie. which works great in the summer, but i wonder how the winter will go. i’ll probably need one of those noise makers. but the birds aren’t noisy in the winter.

    i’m going to eat now. i say funny things when my blood sugar’s messed up. that’s a total lie. i just made that up.

  5. Gabriel... says:

    Butterflies? Really? How does someone develop a phobia about butterflies? I changed the header image, if you’ve got something about bumblebees you should probably keep your eyes closed the next time you come around.

    When I was in Toronto I lived in a rooming house for a couple of months that was surrounded by crow nests. Every morning, at 4.30am, non-stop crow cackling for two or three hours.

  6. markps2 says:

    I have a construction materials depo behind where I live. They have four forklifts going beep-beep-beep all day long, from daybreak at about 530am until 6pm or whatever. The children and the people in the building make noise until 11pm or midnight. I got a 5 hour time window to sleep in every night.
    Bend like a reed in the wind rather than a stiff tree that breaks in a strong wind.
    Otherwise I leave the area.

  7. Yo is Me says:

    hey!!! you did change it for me! a dancing bumble bee! 🙂

    i don’t know where it started or when. it’s been forever. nicole kidman is also afraid of butterflies.

    my friends stopped telling me they were taking me to the butterfly exhibit. you know, so i could get over it. ohmygod… deep breaths, deep breaths.

  8. Pingback: Went to welfare today « Psych Survivor 2.0

  9. Gabriel... says:

    Hey Yo, when any friend of mine tells me they’re afraid of butterflies, I’ll always take down a header image showing a dead butterfly in my hand.

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