Thursday, December 13, 2012

Carry the six....

Universal Law #263: Women should not hang Christmas lights while suffering from PMS. 
‘Tis the season to be grumpy. And bloated. And not the least bit jolly.

Save yourself, Santa. Put me on the Naughty List and call it a day. 

“Son of a B----!” I screamed in frustration.
Ah, yes. The holiday season rings in with the sounds of cussing and grumbling and sniping rather than the jingling of bells and cheery greetings in our house.

“Problem?” my husband hollered down to the basement where I was waste deep in boxes of Christmas decorations.

I’d been down here five minutes and already broken three fingernails.

And at least one toe, if the throbbing in my left foot was any indication.

But - really - it’s my own fault for kicking the chest freezer in frustration. I should have known one small appendage would not fare well against a 400-pound monolith kitchen appliance.

Physics is lost on me.

Needless to say, I was feeling neither happy nor cheerful at the moment.

After another three hours of untangling lights, fixing 51 broken bulbs, stumbling over another string left on the floor and busting about 132 more bulbs, a shot of tequila and a vow to become Jewish, everything was up and ready to go.

Next came the hard part: powering them up.

“Just how many strings of lights do you have over there on the porch?” my husband asked, mentally calculating the number of extension cords he would need to get the job done.

Carry the six.... 

“Uh, 10 I think?” I answered, scratching my head. “Then there’s another six on the bushes, four across the top and maybe two...over there somewhere....” I gestured vaguely toward the side of the house.

Math hurts.

His answering reply was a mumbled “Holy Mother of God” as he turned and headed into the garage.

“Oh, come on,” I joshed at his retreat. “Put your back into it.”

Seriously. It’s not like we need a degree in electrical engineering. ...Although such knowledge would probably come in handy.

After looking at the power grid we created a mere hour later, I’m pretty sure we exceeded maximum capability on at least three outlets.

Note to our friendly insurance agent: Please quit reading and find yourself a cup of eggnog (preferably spiked).

So there we were. Lights up. Power on. All was well. And then we decided to go one step further: add timers. 

Because after spending an entire day creating our masterpiece we could not be bothered to actually turn the darn thing on ourselves every evening for the next three weeks. 

So the responsibility fell to electrical timers. Simple right? Uh. No. 

Apparently that electrical engineering degree WOULD have been handy after all. 

“OK, so tell me again,” I said to my husband. “What does this little dial do.” I pointed to said dial, which looked completely incapable of creating the magic of electricity. Instead, it looked like something the Easy Bake Oven would have. 

Oh. Cookies. 

Cookies would taste great right about now. 

“We’re almost done here. Focus!” my husband snarked, snapping me out of my cookie fog.

“I’m on it!” I hollered back. “Let’s do this thing!" 

Thirty minutes later I was still lost. My husband sighed in frustration, “OK, one more time. You click this dial,” he pointed at the dial on my machine, “While I click MY dial,” he then pointed at the timer in his hand, “One click at a time until the lights turn on. Then let go.”

I nodded in understanding then held up a finger, “One question,” I said then ran my hand down the cord attached to my timer until I reached the end - and the plug.

The unplugged plug.

“Shouldn’t we plug them in first?” I asked.

He narrowed his eyes and huffed, “You haven’t plugged yours in yet?”

I shook my head, “No, you didn’t tell me to.”

Wow. My husband knows a LOT of swear words.

I think he’s going on the Naughty List too.

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