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I hate Christmas……Lights

December 1, 2012

Hey Ya’ll,


Growing up like all kids, I had my heroes. Batman, Superman and the Lone Ranger were my early role models.  They were replaced by Han Solo and Indiana Jones.  Later I wanted to be either Bo or Luke Duke. Doesn’t every 12 year old boy want Daisy to be their cousin? Then I saw that dumb Top Gun movie so I set out to be Mavrick.


top gun


Listen closely kids. Dreams are not reality!


Bethany: Is your house on fire, Clark?
Clark: No, Aunt Bethany, those are the Christmas lights


christmas vacation



In real life I became someone much more real and dorky; Clark Griswold. I had the good fortune to spend a large part of this week outside messing with Christmas Lights and they are the bane of my existence.  Last year, I boxed up seventeen strands of lights with a plan. Monday was dedicated to bringing that plan to life.  Monday was the perfect day to be out with the lights. Temperatures in the mid-50s, sun was shining and the kids were in school. The vision of a easy day was dancing in my head.


Before putting out the lights, I tested each strand and to my dismay eight of the seventeen strands did not work.  I know that these lights were in a hot attic, bound loosely and made in China so I should not have expected more. My wife is a smart woman, following each major Holiday she buys bulk items at 50% off. Last year she bought several large rolls of lights and they saved us several dollars because I am Clark Griswold.


[after Clark fails at lighting all the exterior Christmas lights at the “lighting ceremony” in front of the entire family]
Frances: Talk about pissing your money away. I hope you kids see what a silly waste of resources this was.
Audrey: He worked really hard, Grandma.
Art: So do washing machines.




So several hours later, there I am. The sun has long since set. It is 40 degrees and raining. My five year old son and I are outside trying finishing up the lights. My wife and daughter are at basketball practice and my dinner is sitting on the stove, for the third hour. I am a knucklehead!


I spent the rest of the week, adjusting, adding, changing and re-stringing all in a vain attempt to impress my neighbors. Most of my neighbors, don’t know me. Those who do know me really don’t like me and the feeling is mutual. The neighbor I most dislike right now is my little buddy Scotty L.


Scott is one of my best friends in the world. We served together in the Guard and he is currently the Commander of the 130th Air Lift Squadron. Eight C-130s and 120 men and women dedicated to deliever Freedom with Courage follow his orders. Scott and I were on the same crew in Iraq in 2003. He is the perfect mix of wild eye southern boy and wicked smart. He has a beautiful wife and three great kids. He is on the path to be a General one day and no one will be more proud than me.


Why do I dislike him so much? Monday morning, Scott put out all of his decorations by walking into his attic and grabbing a single box. Standing outside his house, he plugged in a lone, oversized Santa into the socket. Using four ropes, he secured this solitary Santa to the ground and finished the project by putting the empty box back into the attic. Twenty-seven minutes and a cop of coffee later, he drove off on his Harley.  He is Tom Cruise and I am Clark Griswold.


sep-oct 12 154


sep-oct 12 170


So long Easy Rider…I have more lights to put out.





From → life

  1. Rob, this was laugh-out-loud funny. One of my favorite posts yet. I bet your house looks terrific and your little curtain -climbers are so excited. Things like this are making Christmas memories for them. You’re a very good daddy. I’m quite sure there is a special jewel in your eternal crown for Exceptional Above and Beyond Christmas Participation Spirit.

  2. I am glad you saw the humor. Scott is a smart man and my hero. Maybe I will do a post about him and how he kept me in trouble.

    If there is a special jewel, mine will be an onion. My Christmas Spirit usually starts with Bah Humbug.

  3. There’s an easier way to avoid the ganglia of lights. Become Jewish. Me, I’ll try celebrating Quanza this year. Not to make a political statement mind you, but to make more time. I’m really and truly, at heart, a lazy man. Here comes my wife with a roll of Christmas light now. Crap, time to hide.

    Funny post Rob. Good luck with the stapler!

    • One year I tried telling my wife that I was an atheist. She said “Good for you. Now go put up the Santa Lights.”

      I am an expert in excuses. My wife is an expert in telling me to quit crying.

  4. Egg permalink

    Ah, that’s the Christmas spirit. Great cynicism, but I know you secretly love it. Special times, Rob. Keep on stringing those lights (while you still can).

  5. Do you know something I don’t?

    I am not going to take them down though. The world is going to end in 20 days according to the Mayans. If they are wrong I will not take the lights down until next year.

  6. Thanks for stopping by my blog. If I wasn’t so lazy, I would like to have a lot of lights on my house. Instead I decorate much like your friend does, except I do twice as much. That’s right, I have a Santa and a Snowman tied down on the front porch! HO! HO! HO!

    • I would like to do a lot of things, one of which is to be like you and my friend Scott. A couple of inflatables to show the spirit but not so much that you spend days proving you have spirit.

      I always say that if one is good then two must be better. Happy Holidays!

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