A cheap CB radio set has been laying around my house for a while. I got it free somehow; I don’t even remember.
But I thought it would be useful for keeping touch with the kids when we’re at an amusement park or hiking or during a zombie apocalypse or something. Plus I like the idea of non-digital, direct communication and just saying “Over and out” a lot.
Now living in a three-story house, I realized this radio may have a more practical use. When the kids are up in their bedroom on the third floor while I’m downstairs cooking dinner, it would be nice to just “radio” them that dinner is ready rather than marching up two flights of stairs (#firstworldproblems). I’m all for moderate exercise, but I go up and down these stairs enough already and would rather just “ping” them if I have a saucepan full of marinara sauce bubbling.
Finally, today I got enough AA batteries together to make this happen. Molly was really into the idea of using the CB radio! I always love her enthusiasm for things like this and going to see the goats down the street. I gave Molly a handset, and she marched upstairs to test it out.
Beep. “Red 2, the is Ranger 5. Come in.”, I said.
Molly’s voice crackled (yes, crackled!) over the air. “Red 2 here.”
I thought up these radio handles on the spot without a thought. I think “Red 2” was a reference to Star Wars? But Molly would eventually pick herself a new handle: “Alex 51244288”.
We practiced saying “Copy that” and “Over and out”. Molly’s sweet little voice over the squealing over the radio was hilarious and sweet.
At dinner time, the true test came. I radioed Claire, who was upstairs doing ROBLOX (TODO). “Little Bird, come in. Are you there?” Little Bird was Claire’s handle, again made up on the spot without thought. Claire acknowledged the comm and came down to eat some slightly burned chicken wings and pizza.
At bedtime, the locations were reversed. Molly was downstairs. I radioed her from the third floor. “Red 2, report for bed.” “I’m on my way”, said Molly. She gave me a status all the way up the stairs and reported no major obstacles or intruders.
I think we are well on our way to avoiding unnecessary stair climbing and also maybe a short-lived apocalypse.