It’s surprising we don’t have horns on our houses. Not viking longhouse horns, but car horns. It would be handy to have a horn button on the TV remote control so I could honk at the neighbor if he started to blow grass clippings into my yard, or if he honked at me. A house horn would also be a burglar alarm, so if the neighbors heard your house honking they’d know something was wrong.
When I leave in the morning I push the button on my key fob. My car horn honks, the lights flash, and the door unlocks. The house could work the same way. The house lights would flash, the house horn would honk, then the car lights would flash and the car horn honk. If I went back in the house because I’d forgotten something, as often happens, the whole thing would be repeated. It’d be a festival — every morning, and again in the evening.
If houses had car horns, then when a heavy truck went down the street it would set off all the houses. Some houses would be too sensitive, so that a squirrel on the roof would set them off. Horns would honk and lights would flash until everybody went outside, ran off the squirrel, locked the house, unlocked it again to get the dog, went out, locked and unlocked, and then went in and relocked. If your friend came over at midnight asking for bread to set before a visitor, everyone would know about it, and even if you didn’t care about your obligations, you’d come down to him, as soon as you could find the remote.
Viking longhouse horns up on the roof peak might not be a bad idea though.