Wednesday, July 8, 2009

When the Lights Go Out

(Photo by Neil Cullan McKinlay)
How many Greenies does it take to change a light bulb? None. Someone's gone and changed them all already!

Our house had a couple of light bulbs that needed renewing. My wife Dorothy had heard of some of the new energy-saving light bulbs exploding and spraying their mercury contents about the place. So, because we care about ourselves and our environment we opted to return to the ordinary (ie, normal) light bulbs.

Problem: Where have all the ordinary light bulbs gone? All I wanted was some 25 watt and some 60 watt light bulbs - all of the bayonet type.

Problem Solved: After about a half an hour of scratching my head as I looked for these in the supermarket's selection, I ended up settling for some 53 watt bulbs (that somehow are really 75 watts), and some wee 25 watt bulbs whose globes were about a quarter of the size I'm used to!

Problem: One of the new 25 w bulbs died in a super-nova when I switched it on! I'm sure they didn't have these sorts of problems back in days of wax candles!
Question: Is my confusion over light bulbs just simply a symptom of me getting older and more fuddy-duddy, or has it actually got really hard just to change a light bulb nowadays?


  1. Explosions? Bayonets? If only you had bought some batteries as well (or even mentioned the supermarket checkout) that would have triggered a "Charge of the Light Brigade" quip. Anyway, as it is, I do hope you are duly illumined by now, and not still "roamin in the gloamin"! Do you remember catching fireflies in a jar in Canada? How "green" was that as a light source? Do they have such bioluminescent beasties in Australia?

  2. I can't say I can remember catching fireflies in a jar in Canada - I think it's because I was too wee! However, I do remember catching a bus in the rain in Scotland and a train in a station in Australia!
    Yes, and what about bagging baggy-minnows in a net over in the sand-pit a Napierston Terrace. They were sticklebacks - jaggy fish.
    Also, I saw glow worms one time while up Tamboring Mountain. In the dark they were like the starry night sky on a rock face. They have since opened up the Tamboring Mountain Glow-worm Caves on March 5, 2005 (Google it). I'll take you there to see them if you ever come for a visit.

  3. OK. So the Tamboring glow-worms are clearly a different species from the Canadian fireflies, which fly slowly and silently around at dusk with intermittent on-off tail-light (gleaming in the gloaming?). Mesmerising. (See below for a link to an Ontario site on firefles - Ojibway Nature Centre, Windsor).

    By the way, with regards to that Ontario Ojibway connection I have recently discovered that Tonto's famous term of address to the Lone Ranger, "Kemo Sabe", is probably Ojibwe/Potawatomi for "stealthy/secret observer" (hence "scout", or maybe, even, "masked one"). Certainly, the stealthy observation of fireflies at dusk remains a magical childhood memory.

    Ojibway Nature Centre