Question of the Day

What do you use as an alarm clock to wake up in the morning? (Taken from this Lifehacker poll)

I still use a clock radio alarm that’s so old I wake up to the Little Orphan Annie show. It doesn’t have an iPod dock nor FM. I despise the damn thing but it works. Granted, I think I’d despise any alarm clock since it’s constantly scaring me out of perfectly good sleep.


  1. Cell phone. And there is definitely a difference in alarms. My iPod Touch alarm makes me extremely upset when I have to use it. It’s just torture. My phone alarm is quite pleasant, and normal, and just feels a lot more right.

  2. Cell phone here too, set to a sound that I can only describe as unobtrusive.

    But after 2+ years of waking up at the same time I wake up 5-60 minutes before my alarm anyways :\.

  3. Two large and gallumphing dogs who expect their breakfast. Next time I get a dog, it’ll be short enough that it isn’t capable of sticking a cold, wet nose in my ear when it’s hungry.

  4. I go with a double-headed approach. I have a standard boring beeping alarm clock set to one alarm, and my iPhone set to another, about 10 minutes afterwards.

    When they beep at me, I’m able to hit snooze at alternating times.

    On days where waking up is nice, but not required, I just use the iPhone.

  5. No later than 4:30 every morning I am woken up by a rather large cat sitting on my chest, or by loud purring in my ear. I rely on that.

  6. Now that I am unemployed, I use my husband as my alarm clock. He is one of those people with an internal alarm clock. He typically can’t sleep past about 7:30. This morning, however, my jerkass dog was my alarm clock at about 6:30.

  7. Standard smallish clock radio alarm. Tuned to a local FM rock station. Volume down quite low since it doesn’t take much to wake me up.

  8. I have a sunrise alarm clock, set to start up an hour before the actual alarm. For me, it prevents the jolt of the alarm going off, since the light gradually wakes me up. Often I’m awake a few minutes before the beep goes off.

  9. It starts with the “bells” alarm on the Timex alarm clock. Somehow I manage with one finger to hit the 1/4″ button to turn it off, but can’t manage the 1/2″ x 3″ snooze button. Then I roll onto my side. Fall back asleep. Get woken by husband flopping lightly because sunlight is touching him. Fall back asleep, thinking “If I use soap all over I can cut my shower time by 5 minutes”. Dream about being late and getting to work wearing no bra. Get woken up by loud sighing and lip-smacking by husband who has recovered from his photophobia and realizes that if wife does not get in shower soon one of us will get burned by not enough cold water. He flops more heavily until said wife finally rolls out of bed and wanders down the hall trying to remember what she was supposed to do. Remembers it’s time to shower and enters the magical time warp known as the bathroom. loses 45 minutes of her life. Somehow manages to get to work on time. Sometime around 11am finally wakes up.

    I’m not a morning person.

  10. I have a lamp plugged into an old automatic timer because I like the idea behind the light-up alarms, but I’m too cheap to buy one.
    My alarm clock is one with two alarms and two settings. The first alarm is a beeper that gradually increases in volume, and the other I have set to go off an hour later, except it’s set to FM radio.

  11. I use this little digital red bubble alarm clock that I got in a high school graduation gift basket. It can’t do anything fancy besides tell me the time and annoy the hell out of me every morning, but it wakes me up. My boyfriend uses his cell phone alarm clock to get up for work, even though we always get up at the same time b/c he doesn’t trust my little red clock, and most mornings we end up with a dueling-alarm clock situation as a result of our shared love of hitting snooze.

  12. I use my cell phone alarm set to the theme from “A Fistful of Dollars”. It starts off soft enough that it doesn’t jar me awake.

    However, I recently adopted two kittens and they like to start meowing at 6:30 and refuse to stop until I pay them attention (I tried waiting them out till 7:30…didn’t work).

  13. I use Big Ben ..with bells and clacker on has an industrial strength jump outa your skin old school wake-up and I don’t have to worry about electricity going out..course I do have to put it in an open closet cause its loud tick tock won’t let you sleep! Its obnoxious loudness pisses me off that I won’t fall back to sleep..which was a problem I had…

  14. An old clock radio here as well. They don’t make ’em like that anymore – I’ve had it for almost 25 years now, and it still works.
    Most of the time.

  15. Alarm clock or my wife yelling at me to turn off the alarm clock.

    When I lived in Colorado, I slept in a room with a large picture window facing east across the plains and I woke every morning with the sun rising up and shining directly in my face.

    Believe it or not, no matter what time I went to bed, no matter how…ahem…sleepy my drinks had made me, waking up this way always made me feel lovely and refreshed.

    I know there are lamps that are supposed to replicate this, but I can’t figure that they’re anything like that.

  16. A slightly chunky gray and white cat with one crooked fang… who proceeds to get me up at different intervals before the alarm even has a chance to go off… so he can eat his 11 breakfasts. Who needs an alarm?

  17. Absolutely loath using alarm clocks and most of the time wake up with plenty of time to spare anyway.
    When I do have to use a alarm clock I use my watch alarm which is not too loud. But even then I usually wake up before the alarm to avoid having to hear it!

  18. I have one of those alarms with the wind chimes. Nice to wake up to, but if I have to set it for a different time and my husband is sleeping, it gets a little ridiculous!

  19. my life improved greatly in college when i stopped using an alarm clock, and i haven’t gone back since. when there’s something crucial, like waking up early squirrely to catch a plane, i use an iphone with the computer as a backup. i used to use my cell phone for such occasions, but it turns out 5-year-old cell phone alarm clocks don’t work reliably!

  20. The most awful, annoying alarm clock with a giant display, until tonight when I try that sonic the hedgehog drowning music instead.

  21. I use a TV with the volume turned way up. I am both hard of hearing and hard to wake up. I have the channel set on network news so I won’t be tempted to leave it on for long.

  22. I hate glowing clock faces and ticking old school clocks, so I have a small digital travel alarm clock…which has a broken base at the moment coz the SO put the smackdown too hard on it a few days back.

  23. guess I’m going to be the odd duck… i have a standard mono clock radio w/alarm (wake to an FM or AM channel, never a beep), but i’m replacing it with a tivoli internet radio arriving tomorrow. expensive but I just got a little bonus at work and I had been thinking about it for awhile so splurged… i have to have a radio going getting ready in the morning and I just got tired of the little mono one i had (which will be retired to the garage… kind of sad looking to fit in the garage even). hoping I will like it or sad panda I will be…

  24. Currently, it’s Zombie by Fela Kuti from a Philips CD alarm clock.

    Maybe I’ll have to try the Fistful of Dollars theme as another suggested. Very dramatic, and starts out so quietly with the xylophone.

  25. 2 cats who want to eat at 3:30 in the morning.
    they get just close enough so that their whiskers just touch my face enough to itch.
    If I go back to sleep, they proceed to step all over my head and walk on my pillow until I am awake and pissed off.

  26. I hate clocks – only have one in the house (bathroom), but I have a good internal one. Up at 5:30 am whether I like it or not. If it’s critical, I’ll set the cell phone. The alarm song is always Overkill by Motorhead.

  27. I’m a heavy sleeper when I’m at home, it takes either a sustained clamor or one hell of a loud jolt to wake me. I keep my cell phone very near the head of my bed on the night stand and wake up to a version of that begins very abruptly without the warping noise. You’d think it’d make me hate the song over time but I just love it all the more somehow. Been getting me up for the past 2 years or so fairly reliably. It’s a rush of adrenaline that’s sure to carry my lazy ass off the bed and into the shower.

  28. I use a cellphone and the dog.
    Cell phone wakes up dog. Dog needs to pee, and will use his paws to shake me awake.
    These days, I also use my own internal alarm clock, which is how being a responsible adult stopped being fun.

  29. first i set my cell phone and it goes off twice, leaving one snooze period. then i have my ihome thing where i have to set it to the beeping, because if its music i’ll fall back asleep, and i’ll hit the snooze on that about 3 or 4 times. then i’ll either decide i’m too tired and go back to bed or get out of bed and go where ever i need to go.

  30. For years I had a bleating travel alarm clock that I would place at the furthest corner of the room so I would be forced to get out of bed to shut it off. But these days my mutt’s terrible breath and extremely wet nose let’s me know that 4am is the most excellent time to pee…

  31. An indiglo AA powered super basic digital alarm clock. My dad had it for several years and then gave it to me in high school and I’ve replaced the battery once in a decade. It’s small and travels really well too. The 8 minute snooze is just about perfect.

    Off to read other comments.

  32. I’m surprised there’s only one mention of children so far. I quit the alarm clock thing after the birth of our girl 2 years ago. For all of you childless folks out there: appreciate having control of when you wake while you can. I’ve tried, but you can’t convince a toddler to go back to sleep when she’s ready to roll.

    On the road it’s an unreliable Treo 650 that may or may not actually chime when programmed to. Any suggestions for a decent travel alarm clock?

  33. Two alarm clocks…
    First one goes off half hour before I need to get up that is supposed to be the sound of ocean waves. However, when I’m still dazed, it sounds just like a crowd cheering me on. I can’t count how many dreams I wake up from that involves me being cheered. I usually promptly hit the snooze and go back to sleep.

    Then I have a Bose radio alarm that is set for when I can’t fool around with snooze anymore. It has a pleasant beep that progressively gets more audible over time…nice to not be jarred awake.

  34. i’ve had the same alarm clock for around 15 years now.

    at this point my alarm clock is like an old friend… an old friend who i smack around mercilessly when it screams at me at 5:30 in the morning.

  35. Alarm clock-radio tuned between stations. I find that the annoying alarm sets me off in a bad mood and if tuned to a station, I’ll procrastinate by listening. Mild static and station bleed-over seems the best mix for me.

  36. Bladder (3am)
    Cat (5am)
    Doors opening and closing, high heels on tile floors (6am)
    iPod in dock (6:20am)

    It’s nice waking up to a different tune every time, though I often hit it at the first click, when the ipod screen lights up but before any music begins. Then I turn on the music to get me out of bed and into the washroom.

    It used to play the same song every morning, but then my ipod software updated and now I get random ones!

  37. Two mobile phones, both playing an mp3 of Reveille, set to go off a minute apart. I also put them in separate places so I HAVE to get up to switch them off.

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