It's Very Screwy

I don’t think my head has been in a paper bag, but yesterday I went to the bigger-than-life hardware store, looking for a screw that would fit one of the plug-in plates that had been removed while the painter was doing his thing. It seemed like an easy trip. I had the matching screw and the helpful clerk guided me to the football stadium-sized aisle that held every screw that anyone in the full universe could possibly want, except, of course, this one. It seems that there had been a run on that particular sized screw, and they were fresh out. Finally, he handed me a small bag of screws, costing $1.68, that might work, he told me. But since I have to get down on my knees to screw them in, they are still sitting on the table, seventh or eighth on my “to do” list. It will move to first, if my knees stop hurting.


While I was there, I walked through the lighting section because two of my light fixtures were on the verge of falling apart and the rest were way beyond their prime, looking grimy and dated next to my brand-new paint job. I am sure my light fixtures were the originals in my not-new house, and I thought, why not, it’s only money? Big mistake. The first thing I noticed was that hundreds of fixtures were displayed. The last time I looked at lights, there were two kinds: hangy-downy from the ceiling and attached-to-the-wall and they all had light bulbs that needed changing from time to time. Tom had switched to LED bulbs a few years ago when Idaho Power advised us how efficient they were and then sent us a few motivational coupons.


Yesterday, the big-box store’s light display was astonishing, sparkling and pretty, but many did not need light bulbs because the unit was the lightbulb. What the…? The packaging bragged that the lighting unit would last forty-five years, which means I could store my light-changing ladder until my 120th birthday. That has to be worth something, right? I found another helpful clerk, who was actually a painting specialist, but he was more than happy to assist me and before I knew it, I had six boxes of lights in my cart. I know a handyman who will help me install them and, no, I’m not sharing his name. One of the lights is called super-bright and the package says it will last 50,000 hours, which seems like a heck of a long time. They all indicate that they are more energy efficient than traditional bulbs, but the jury is still out on that claim. I won’t have to remove a globe to clean them, and I can bribe my grandchildren to wipe down the exteriors from time to time.


My $1.68 bill for a single screw sprang much higher, but I’m looking at it this way: my life will be brighter and clearer, and I’ll absolutely convince myself that this is the way to have a bright future and a positive outlook on life.


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