Mike Osterhage: The Battle Of The Bulb

KSAT 12 Meteorologist Mike Osterhage goes mano a mano with his holiday lights.

Author: Mike Osterhage, Meteorologist, mosterhage@ksat.com
Published On: Nov 16 2011 01:11:55 PM CST   Updated On: Mar 09 2011 08:44:46 AM CST

The battle of the bulb...there must be Gremlins in the attic who mess with them!

KSAT Slideshow: Holiday Lights

Like many folks, part of our Thanksgiving weekend tradition is putting up the Christmas tree and all of the decorations. It's always such an exciting time... getting the boxes out of the attic and opening them is like opening a new present all over again. And once again with that excitement came frustration. Why don't some of the lights work? They did last year!

When it comes to decorating the house at Christmas, my wife has compared me to "Clark Griswold," the character Chevy Chase plays in National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation. I like to go all out! I'm also very organized about it. I have all of my lights labeled, and groups of lights pre-assembled with extension cords, so it's a simple matter of hanging them on pre-installed hooks. Which makes it even more frustrating when they don't work! Last year it was EVERY OTHER strand of icicle lights on the pre-assembled string! Every other strand - how does that happen? This year, the lights on the wreaths didn't work. Oh, and the fun didn't end there, burned out bulbs also turned up inside. Half a string of lights on our pre-lit tree didn't work, nor did those on the mantle garland.

What happens up there in the attic in the 11 months between January 1st and Thanksgiving? Do the lights succumb to the heat? Do they have a short life-span on purpose? Or are there little gremlins who mess with them... kind of like in that episode of "Twilight Zone"?

Anyway, after some work, everything is illuminated and beautiful, and I'm playing "Ray Conniff Singers" Christmas music (not my wife's favorite).

As for what will or won't work next year, I'll worry about that the day after Thanksgiving.