I have spent several days putting up my outside Christmas lights, and I have become what my grandmother referred to as "flumixed" which is a more polite way of saying how I felt earlier today.

The problem with strings of lights is that they will not light if one bulb is out, so you spend hours searching for the one that has gone bad.  When you find the bad one, you find that little package of spares is empty, having been used last year. Like most people I have a lot of strings of lights that no longer work, but I hold onto them in the hope that I could use the bulbs that are still good to replace those burned out ones on other strings. The problem is even though the bulbs look alike, there is usually a slight difference in the base, which makes it impossible to fit it into the little hole provided.

I think this is by design so people will keep buying new strings of lights when they get "flumixed" like I do every year. At the present time I have more strings of lights that don't work than those that do. I just can't bring myself to throw them away in case their bulbs will fit some future string with one bad bulb.

I have started making a ball out of these old strings of lights, like the famous ball of string people travel miles to see. At the rate I am collecting these useless strings of lights I should wind up with a ball that can be seen from outer space before long.