The Mystery of the Lights

You could say it started with Parade Magazine, and I certainly wouldn’t dispute you. After all, it was in Parade Magazine that I read the article about the growing popularity of coloring for adults, the latest trend. The article described all of the benefits about getting in touch with your inner coloring kindergartener, like stress relief and sparking your creative energy. I wanted my stress relieved and my energy sparked, so I ordered a couple of books especially designed for adult relaxation and fun, and of course, a nice new sharp tin of colored pencils.
Here’s the thing I discovered, and I’ll get to the mystery in a second, don’t you worry. Coloring stresses me out! I don’t care how adult I am, I still can’t draw within the lines to save my life, even with nifty pencils that came in a tin. Within moments of what I had anticipated to be blissful sketching, I was sweating and swearing and having flashbacks to Mrs. Mortensen’s class, lo those years ago.
So…to the mystery. You see, when I went to color, I sat at my dining room table. And for the first time in a while, since it is summer and light out into the night, after I had colored for about a minute and felt something lacking, I went to turn on the lights over the table, a rather cool, if I must say, Mission style pewter lighting fixture with three candlestick type lights. But the lights didn’t come on. My house is old, and things wear out all the time, but the light fixture is “relatively” new, since I bought it and had it installed when I moved in about 11 years ago. I just assumed it was the wall switch that had burned out.
I bought the new switch, cleverly guided by my dad, who had instructed me to take a picture of the switch so I would know what I was buying. I had my friend/neighbor/handyman Ray over to install the switch for me–he was also the person who had installed the fixture to begin with. Sure enough, when he pulled the old switch out of the wall, we could both see how old it was, and surmised it could have possibly been in the wall since the house was built in 1948. Definitely time for a switcheroo on the switch!
But after he had installed the nice, shiny new switch and the groovy new dimmer, the lights didn’t come back on. We looked at each other, baffled. He suggested that perhaps the bulbs had just burned out, and I scoffingly responded that there was no way all three lights would burn out simultaneously, and if that was the case, I was a f*cking idiot. But I still went out to the studio to see if I had a spare bulb just to be sure. And as I walked back into the house, Ray called to me, “you are a f*cking idiot” (he said it nicely, he is a very nice person). And I looked and saw that the lights were shining brightly.
My jaw dropped, and Ray laughingly explained that all he had done was tighten the bulbs, that all 3 bulbs had been unscrewed. Queue up the “Ree Ree Ree” scary sounds, because I have to tell you, I live alone, and it’s highly unlikely that any of my recent visitors would have had any reason to unscrew the bulbs on my lighting fixture, nor would they really have had that opportunity.
The only person I could think of who could have possibly perpetuated such a crime was my sister, Wendy, who had recently spent the night. Because, if I had thought of it, I would have definitely unscrewed the light bulbs at her house during my last visit. It’s the kind of hi-larious shenanigans we Gold girls enjoy. But Wendy vehemently denied doing the deed, and I believe her.
It’s weird, right? Some of you may remember I went through a spell of several months last year where my doorbell would ring repeatedly at all hours of the day and night, with no-one at the door. It completely freaked me out, and only ended when we finally ripped the doorbell out of the wall and replaced it with a wireless system. Some people suggested that was caused by a short in the wiring or some sort of satellite sending off signals that triggered the bell, but I’ve never been satisfied with either solution.
And now this, spontaneously unscrewed bulbs. I’m pretty convinced at this point that there’s a poltergeist living in my house, and I can only pray it’s a friendly, benevolent one. It’s a little stressful. If only there was something I could do to relax. Like, coloring.
Oh, never mind!
The end, for now


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