Rushville Republican


December 18, 2012

Barada: The joy of hanging Christmas lights

RUSHVILLE — Just think, one week from now will be Christmas Day! It’s almost impossible to believe that we’re nearing the end of the year 2012. My, how time flies. I will admit, however, that with each passing year it gets just a little more difficult to get out and put up all the Christmas decorations. And I’m convinced that there’s nothing quite as frustrating as getting out the strings of lights only to find that half of them don’t work, either because of a bad fuse or because one bulb is burned out which, of course, means that none of the lights on the string work at all!

This year, however, I seem to have gotten lucky. None of the major strands of greenery that are interlaced with little white strings of lights failed to work. When that happens, I’ve been known to get out the heavy scissors and simply dissect the strand of lights that’s become inoperable and put on an entirely new one. If you’ve ever tried to unwind a strand of little white lights from a garland of artificial greenery, you, perhaps, understand the frustration that would cause one to turn that string of lights into little segments of wire and lights scattered on the floor.

We also put strands of little white lights outside for the holidays, too. I went to four different stores before I found any at all. And all they had were little strings of only 20 lights that couldn’t be connected together, except at the power source. What good are they? I could have had one very bright spot of ten strands of lights illuminating an area about four feet square. Finally, Connie found half a dozen boxes of lights from last year with 100 bulbs on each strand. They worked perfectly.

I’m very surprised at myself for having had the good sense to buy extra lights last year. They were a life-saver this season.

Despite all my complaining about Christmas tree lights, can you imagine what it must have been like back in the day when real Christmas trees were decorated with real candles in little holders attached to them? That sounds about as dangerous an undertaking as I can imagine. Imagine, if you will, a house full of little children running around with a real Christmas tree decorated with real burning candles on it. That sounds like a conflagration just waiting to happen. I’m surprised that there isn’t an endless stream of stories about house fires at Christmas when trees sported a plethora of little flaming candles just waiting to be jostled by happy little tykes running through the house.

Speaking of Christmas decorations, I’ve always thought it would be a great idea to have strands of colored Christmas lights strung from the four corners of the local courthouse to the top of the apartment building on the corner of Second and Perkins, the corner of Tweedy’s Do It Center, the corner of CVS pharmacy, and the corner of the 201 Building. Outrageous, you say? Nonsense! They do exactly that sort of thing from the courthouse in downtown Bloomington, and I’ll bet there are other towns with county courthouses that also string lights from their towers and turrets. Indianapolis sort of does a similar thing on Monument Circle with the strands of lights making the Soldiers and Sailors Monument the “world’s largest Christmas tree.”

We do have red and green lights shining from the four clock faces in the central tower of the courthouse, but I think it would add to the festiveness of the season to run strings of colored lights from the four corners of our courthouse across the street to other downtown buildings – and it could be done high enough there would be no danger of them being hit by any of the endless procession of semis that travel east along First Street, turn north on Perkins, and then back east on 44 on their way though our fair city.

When I was a kid (Wardian slip), there used to be strands of colored lights strung back and forth across Main Street, beginning at about Fourth Street and continuing at least to First Street, if not farther. It was always fun to drive south on Main Street during the holiday season, anticipating the appearance of that colorful canopy of lights, (I think Milroy is using those strands of lights now. Never let it be said that Milroy ever let anything go to waste!)

Since it gets dark so early, it’s easy to see how many private homes have Christmas decorations this year; and, to me, at least, it seems as if there are more homes with decorations than in previous years. Main Street looks especially nice, in my opinion. Not only are there more Christmas decorations, but more homes seem to have been freshly painted and landscaped than in recent years. Perhaps it’s the infamous Main Street project that has spurred on more people to fix up their homes or perhaps it’s just my imagination, but, especially at Christmas, it’s very pleasant to see so many homes decorated for the holidays.

Getting back to my own Christmas lighting chores, I’m happy to report that all the strings of lights we intended to put up outside our house are up and working, at least as of this date. But fear not, even if we lose a sting of little white lights because of the demise of one crummy bulb, I have a couple of spare strings that can be used to take the place of the faulty strand. I believe I’ve reached the point in life where I don’t have to test each bulb individually, not to mention check the fuses, to re-illuminate a whole string. If one goes out, the whole string goes and a new one will go up!

That’s -30- for this week.


Text Only
  • We are still the United States It seems to me that America has in the past had an idea of destiny, one that started at Concord and continues to today. A great experiment was begun with the shot heard around the world. It continued on through the remainder of the Revolution and spa

    April 22, 2014

  • Mail Tales: Of postcards and wishing where you were This week we're going to explore the exciting world of Deltiology. I know that "Deltiology" sounds vaguely scientific, which means some of you are probably worrying that this is another one of my sneaky attempts to foist upon you a poorly researched,

    April 22, 2014

  • An important election this year I wonder if anyone has to be reminded that we're in another election year. The current election season is often referred to as an "off-year" election because it's not a year in which we vote for a president. This will be, nevertheless, one of the mos

    April 22, 2014

  • In a perpetual comma I misplace a lot of things: keys wallet gloves the dog's leash. Recently I misplaced something that may not seem very important unless you read that last sentence carefully. Then you will realize that believe it or not I can't find my comma. Yes it's

    April 22, 2014

  • Crate art Paper labels from 1880-1930, collectively referred to as "Crate Art", are a unique form of American Folk Art. Originally designed to be glued to the ends of wooden crates to identify produce during shipping, the graphically attractive labels are stil

    April 22, 2014

  • This column will self-destruct in 5 seconds I've become completely infatuated over the past few weeks with a gift I received a few Christmases ago. It was a completely unexpected gift from one of my big brothers: a set of "Mission: Impossible" DVDs. No, not home videos of me begging my kids to

    April 15, 2014

  • Don't sweat the small things There are a few things in life that really get under my skin, one of which is complaining. Yes, I complain sometimes, but it doesn't last too long at all before I put myself in check. There was a story this week that really touched my heart and like

    April 15, 2014

  • The timeless beauty of wicker No matter what the day may bring, I can leave it all behind when I take my evening walk. Strolling through our historic neighborhood on Indy's south side is a multifaceted treat. It is good for my heart, it erases the cares of the day and it affords

    April 15, 2014

  • Self deposit box I love where I bank. It's a branch inside of a big supermarket. I can make a modest withdrawal and then go and blow every last penny in the cookie aisle. The tellers at the window appreciate me. They know about my obsession with round numbers and und

    April 15, 2014

  • Change can be done here In previous columns I've suggested that one of the factors holding this community back is the relatively poor image many of us have of our town. The point, as some may recall, was made by several people who live in other communities who said Rushvill

    April 15, 2014

Featured Ads
AP Video
US Proposes Pay-for-priority Internet Standards Wife Mourns Chicago Doctor Killed in Afghanistan FDA Proposes Regulations on E-cigarettes Kerry Warns Russia of Expensive New Sanctions Mideast Peace Talks Stall on Hamas Deal Cody Walker Remembers His Late Brother Paul Grieving South Korea Puts Up Yellow Ribbons Raw: Kerry Brings His Dog to Work Raw: Girls Survive Car Crash Into Their Bedroom Three U.S. Doctors Killed by Afghan Security Yankees' Pineda Suspended 10 Games for Pine Tar Colleagues Mourn Death of Doctors in Afghanistan Ukraine Launches Operation Against Insurgents Obama Reassures Japan on China Raw: Car Crashes Into San Antonio Pool Time Magazine Announces Top Influencers List Raw: Angry Relatives Confront SKorea Officials Bigger Riders Means Bigger Horses Out West Yankees Pineda Ejected for Pine Tar Deadly Fungus Killing Bats, Spreading in US
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.