Sunday, December 13, 2009

Be merry and of good cheer....

I find nothing "Merry" about a string of Christmas lights. How can one be merry about anything that brings a man so much misery?

This year I bought two strings of the new LED lights to outline a full size antique one horse sleigh, used as part of our outside Christmas decorations. I didn't buy the bargain priced sets. I paid for the better ones, because we all know you get what you pay for. After testing both strands to make sure they worked, I carefully placed and fastened each bulb and strand to the sleigh using plastic tie straps making them a permanent part of the sleigh. Two hours later, its 34 degrees, and I am cold, from sitting, standing kneeling on the cold concrete. But I have finished, and plug them in for the grand show. AHHHHH, they're not working! I start fumbling around and find the first bulb socket is actually split and the guts are exposed to the wires and bulb. WTF? Okay, so I squeeze the socket together and find that they light up. Off to the garage and find some electrical tape, and wrap the socket back together. Now I look around and find groups of lights not working. How the hell does that happen? They all worked before I started. This sucks, and I'm cold. I read the box; "check each bulb starting at the first one and working your way through the string to make sure they are seated into the light socket fully." There are two strings of 150 mini lights. I begin, and about three quarters of the way through the first string, I find a dislodged bulb and secured it. More lights come on, but not all. I continue this process finding more loose bulbs, and repeat the process. I complete all 300 bulbs only to find I still have about a third of a string not working in the middle of the second string of lights. I read the box again; "remove each bulb from the socket and make sure the wire probes are aligned properly and making contact." I'm numb, my fingers are too big to grasp the socket and bulb in order to separate the two. It's the string at the back of the sleigh along the bottom, and I have to sit back down on the cold concrete for this surgical procedure with a cold wind blowing down my plumbers crack. I HATE these frig-gin lights. Using a screw driver, I pry each and everyone apart to check the connection. Nothing wrong, and they're still not working. I look to see if I have an opportunity to rearrange the lights along the back in order to cover this blacked out area. I do, and so I shift the burning lights to the area. No one will see this strange stringy mess in the dark anyway. Four hours later, and there's not a merry bone in my body. I hate this sleigh, I don't know why we bought it.

When my wife comes home later in the evening, I ask her what she thinks now that the sleigh is all lit up?

She says, I can't tell what it is at night. It just looks like a bunch of lights on something.

We don't talk for the rest of the evening.

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