Well, my peaceful slumber was interrupted by a sharp chirp. The sound has been designed to tell me that the battery in the smoke alarm is dying. At 3:45 a.m. I try to ignore it, but the chirping is relentless. As per normal, the sound seems to have no effect on the Missus. While she snoozes, I get up to investigate. At this point, the Shih Tzus, terrorized and disoriented by the intermittent chirping, are at my heels and, consequently, are in the way. As the fog in my head lifts a bit, I come to the realization that there are no fewer than six smoke alarms in the house. As if on cue, the Missus stumbles bleary-eyed from her royal bed chambers and casually asks if we should change the battery now. Chirp. After using my keen sense of hearing and a compass, I locate the offending smoke alarm, while the Missus fumbles to find the necessary battery. Of course, even at 6'2", I need a ladder, which involves backing the car out of the garage. At 4:03 a.m. I get the ladder, retrieve the smoke alarm, remove the lifeless battery, install the fresh battery, and climb back up the ladder. With victory firmly within my grasp, I am just putting the smoke alarm back when I hear it again. Chirp. Yes, that's right. The smoke alarm in my hand doesn't need a battery. Oh, no. One of his five brother smoke alarms, elsewhere in the house, needs a fresh battery. To let me know exactly how much she dislikes this continued assault on her senses, the smaller Shih Tzu runs into my sleeping son's bedroom and promptly pees right in the middle of the room. Chirp. At 4:12 a.m., the Missus informs me that we only have three nine volt batteries in the house. Chirp.