I misplaced my Christmas lights. This qualifies as a first-world problem, and I’m not asking for sympathy. I am, however, disappointed my memory turned trickster. Really, memory? You choose now to trip me up?
Don’t worry, I don’t have to buy many replacement strands. Energy conservation is my excuse for no longer hanging lights outside. Last year, a neighbor lost patience with me and said, “How long does it take to throw up one strand of lights? Ten minutes!” I should have told her to make herself at home on my roof, but no, her fervor so astonished me, I couldn’t think of a comeback.
The light lobby is powerful on my street. Larger-than-life inflatable snowmen, illuminated from within, bob and sway. Spotlights shine on twig reindeer that lift their heads, eye Disney characters bearing gifts, and lower them again. Lighted candy canes compete with lighted wreaths and LED snowflakes. Multi-colored lights blink. (God help anyone prone to seizures who inadvertently turns down my block.) Santa and his sleigh get spotlights as do doors decorated to look like wrapped presents.
If I ruled the world, people would wrap white lights around trees or place an ivory electric candle in every window. I’d decree indoor trees must bear white lights, not multicolored. Oh, and no blinking lights would be allowed in my kingdom. Go on, call me Grinch.
Tomorrow, I’ll buy white lights to adorn the tree that now stands in my front window. My neighbors will be disappointed, but they’ll get over it. My gift to them is the superiority they’ll feel every time they look over at my bling-less, light-less house.
Do you put up outdoor lights and decorations? What decoration, inside or out, must go up before you’re ready to greet the holiday? (My last question fits Hanukkah and Kwanzaa, too, so don’t think you can wiggle out of answering.)