Hearing things? just music

My alarm clock is very unpredictable, except for its accurate time-keeping function and punctuality of the alarm sound.   That sound can only be described as “annoying” and it is that very feature that accounts for the alarm clock’s longevity on my dresser.

The original electronic tune–original to that particular clock–is SO annoying that it has remained my favorite over decades because of its ear-grating sound quality.  The tune is what accounts for its success as an alarm…it assures my immediate rising to turn the thing OFF.     As an extra precaution I have always kept the clock, which is also a telephone, out of my reach, so that it requires getting out of bed and walking across the room.   It is not a radio, and I no longer use it as a telephone, just as an alarm, and as I said before– it does keep perfect time.

About two years ago the clock started to play tunes that were not programmed into its memory.   The first few times this happened I chalked it up to Dreaming.  I have always been a avid dreamer, and hearing music in dreams is not anything unusual.

The first (real) tune I heard was Loch Lomand, –which has the lyrics: “You take the high road and I’ll take the low road, and I’ll be in Scotland a’fore ye; For me and my true love will never meet again, on the Bonny Bonny banks of Loch Lomand. ”   [I always thought it was Loch Loming…but google spells it Lomand.]

Again, I recognized the tune, and  I know the words (more or less) to the song.  Still, I did not mention this music to anyone, and continued to assume it part of a Dream.  But over time the musical repertoire changed now and then, to include other songs that I know well–such as “The Battle Hymn of the Republic”;  “When The Saints Come Marching In” and others.

One exception to the hymns is a favorite of mine by the Credence Clearwater Revival (CCR):  “Bad Moon Rising.”  

This morning a rousing hymn, one of my favorite ecumenical hit favorites, woke me out of a sound sleep.   (Purists please forgive me for my misquoted words of the hymn…)  “Holy! Holy! Holy!…. Lord God Almighty, God in three persons ……blessed trinity.”      This great hymn is always best enjoyed (in my opinion) in a large church with one of those enormous pipe organs…nothing swells the heart like a giant church organ with an expert at the keyboard.

So, back to my entertaining alarm clock.

OK, I do joke about this impromptu concert that occurs occasionally….it is something of a phenomenon.  I do find it interesting, and invariably I hum and/or sing the featured songs all day when they start off my morning.    This music always sounds like an orchestra, with a large choir of voices.  It is always a complete verse of a song that I know, it never just trails off…it sounds like a recording to me.

Seriously, I do wonder about this music.  Aside from the strange looks I get from most people when I mention it, I did a google search once and found a thread in which “music from nowhere” was discussed.   One theory was that people who had had recent dental work might be picking up radio waves.   Someone else had it only when their head was placed on a pillow with the ear covered…suggesting pyschic or mental reception from the brain…rather than the air.  (No comments required 🙂

I know…you’re all thinking “Twilight Zone.”   Maybe so.  Maybe it’s a haunted contraption, my telephone-alarm system.    Could it be an adjacent alternate-reality?  Ah, even I think that is unlikely.       Maybe I am dreaming when it occurs, perhaps an inner-ear condition–I admit to being hard of hearing.   There has never been another person present when the concert occurs…just a cat, usually Tinkerbell, who probably hears about as well as I do (she is in her eighteenth year.)  I have considered that possibility and have glanced at her and any other cat that happens to be around at the time to see if there is a response.   There isn’t.

Oddly, this mysterious music does NOT occur in place of the alarm sound…only at odd times during the night when I am sound asleep.  Also–the cats DO respond to the actual alarm–I have tried to no avail to train my cats to turn off the alarm, but they either don’t get it…or they refuse to even try it.   All they would have to do is touch the alarm button with their foot…how difficult is that?

16 thoughts on “Hearing things? just music

  1. I love your idea of training a cat to turn off the alarm. I’m one of those lucky ones who often wakes before the alarm sounds. Not so for number one daughter. She would attack an alarm with a hammer if she could. Meanwhile, I’ll enjoy your mystery of the musical alarm.


  2. haha I love the idea of you trying to train your cats to turn off the alarm- great post- it all sounds very mysterious- but you know, I’ve actually seen electronics do similar things- like turn on by themselves and play music- maybe we’re all being haunted by the music man :p

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  3. Love this post! You made me laugh, so early in the morning! We have at least one thing in common … kitties, and an aging one at that! Ours is Spooky, aka “geriatric cat”. He is 21 this year, is blind and mostly deaf and has had at least 2 strokes, but he’s quite a happy guy, all things considered. Thanks for the post – I enjoy your style!


    1. 21! That’s great. We have 7 inside, and a variable number outside. Tink is 18, Moby 14,; Pearl and Toby, 10; Sister 5, Dottie 4; and Baby about a year. Baby has cerebellar hypoplasia…that’s why she got to come in. Thanks for your great comments…and glad to meet you!

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      1. Wow … we have 8 … all indoors, as we live near a busy intersection. We lost 2 in 2014, else we would have 10. Several have disabilities of one form or another, so life is sometimes challenging around here, and I grouse and grumble, but I wouldn’t trade a single one for anything. 🙂


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