Christmas lights that go pffftttt


What is it with Christmas lights? Every year, they work fine all through Christmas and are still shining brightly when I take them down and store them away for the next year. But 11 months later, I pull them out of storage, plug them in and…nothing. Absolutely nothing. No lights. Not a single one on the string.

Over the weekend, I finally caved in and began to pull out the Christmas stuff. First the door wreath, which was strung with a strand of clear mini lights and a strand of “peppermint” mini lights (red and white). I actually began to feel a bit more excited about Christmas until sticking the plug in the nearest outlet. Nada. Sigh.

So okay. I’ll just replace them with the other clear lights stashed away. But no such luck. Of all the strings of lights in the basement dungeon, only one string worked. Why should I be surprised? This happens every year. You would think…but no, I’m enough of an optimist that I like to think just once, all the lights will spend their time in hibernation saving their energy to come to life in December.

Boy. They just don’t make lights like they used to. Somewhere in the back of my mind, I can remember my dad getting out the lights every year — these were the “old-fashioned” big lights. All you had to do was keep some extra bulbs on hand and replace the few that didn’t work. No need to replace whole strings of lights. Or at least that’s how I remember it…there was also a little bit of groaning and grumbling on Dad’s part so maybe it wasn’t as easy as I think it was.

Back to my own lighting frustrations. Oddly, while picking through the Christmas boxes last night, I found another string of lights hidden away. I stuck them in an outlet in the basement office and…bingo…they worked!  I ran upstairs, wound them around a display on top of the lawyer’s cabinet and plugged them in.

Pfffhhhttttt. No pretty lights. By this time, I could feel a scream forming at the base of my throat. In the meantime, the hubs — ever a patient man — was standing by, rolling his eyes, fingers in his ears, waiting for me to blow.

Okay. This is just plain silly. Stupid to actually lose my cool over a bunch of lights that will just cause my electric bill to skyrocket if they ever decide to come to life.

So…here’s the plan. This year, I’m buying new lights and when Christmas is over, I’m going to throw them out. Why not? They won’t work next year anyway and I’ll save myself the frustration of having to test them all over again. I’ll just buy new ones each year.

Just making my own little effort to boost the economy.

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2 responses to “Christmas lights that go pffftttt

  1. Nope, you won’t throw them out. You just can’t. You want to but you won’t.

    I loved the big lights of my childhood. The ones inside were big and the outdoor ones were gigantic.

  2. Pannabecker Steiner Mary

    Yeah? You just wait and see, sister. I’ll send them to you to fix. We have some of the really old ones from Fred’s parents — I made two displays with them. Some are in an antique stemmed bowl and the others in an old milk bottle. Purty.

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