Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Annual Power Surge

Living in a relatively high-end cul de sac brings with it responsibilities, especially during the holidaze season, when it’s time for the annual power surge.

It isn’t enough that we keep our property coifed and houses sufficiently presentable so that the association’s architectural committee doesn’t begin sending threatening letters.

Duding the place up for the holidaze has always been on the guy side of the to-do ledger so there is no BS in Domestic Engineering course to take, other than a memory one. This domestic engineer guy can never remember from one year to the next how he strung up the front-of-the-house lights, adding more stress to the stringing.

This year I was without my helper, our golden retriever, Dutch. We had to put him down in early November.

Three of our four closest neighbors (even the non-Christian Chinese family) defy tradition and hang strings of white icicles from their front roofs. Thank goodness for the Thai Buddhist family two doors down. Otherwise we’d be surrounded by four faux wintery symbols.

I’ll stick with old-fashioned multi-colored bulb lights—the ones that pop into a million pieces if jarred the slightest. They also create a power surge that causes a blood pressure surge when I open the January City of Anaheim electrical bill.

The other surprise is opening the credit card statements and seeing how much PJ overshot our Christmas gift budget. This will be the fourth year in a row we have vowed ourselves a minimalist Christmas.

But then I will remind myself that she is the family ATM, so I am restricted to minimalist mutterings.

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