As a child of the 80s and 90s, the microwave has a special place in my heart—and microwaved food, a special place in my arteries. Popcorn on movie night, late-night snacks with friends, cups of noodles as a freshman in college—the beeps of a microwave are woven through most of the formative years of my life.
But as a parent of a toddler in 2018, I really wish my microwave would shut the hell up. I've got enough gizmos, toys, and gadgets in my life blaring sounds at me, I don't need it from my microwave, too—especially once my kid has finally gone to bed.
As a result, I'm the person who is perpetually sprinting to the microwave, hoping to open the door before it hits zero and starts beeping like my house is on fire.
Last week, I stumbled upon a random tip online that struck me like a bolt of lightning: most microwaves have a mute function, you just have to learn how to find the option in the menu by looking in the manual.
First of all: microwaves have manuals? I don't know if mine did, but I'm sure it went immediately into the trash. Who needs a manual to operate their microwave?
But as someone who has frequently said out loud, "I wish my microwave could be muted"—and never did five seconds of research to see if it was possible—this was a legitimate epiphany. Microwaves and beeps just sort of go together. It honestly never occurred to me that a silent microwave existed.
I was so excited that I immediately ran to try it. After some light Googling and fiddling with the menu, I finally got it. My microwave was muted. Silence reigned. When I was done cooking, the thing just... stopped and sat there. It was almost sad.
Do I miss the beeps? A little, especially when I nearly set my microwave to make popcorn for 22 minutes instead of two. But it's been a week, my house is currently not-on-fire, and I don't think I can ever go back. if anything, I wonder why I put up with such a nuisance for so long.
Look, it's entirely possible that you already know this. Maybe you're part of the silent majority that have already muted their microwave and I'm just an idiot (also entirely possible). Congrats!
For the rest of you, you're welcome. Now enjoy your next midnight snack the way it was meant to be enjoyed: alone, while everyone sleeps, when nobody can judge you.