Friday, September 17, 2010
Prohibition -- The Lights Are Going Out
Oh sure, the new bulbs give light, and they're spiraly, and they last a long time and collect dust in fascinating ways. And I'll get that little surge of evil when I throw them in the trash instead of taking them to the hazardous waste dump, but I know that after a few years of prohibition I'll become desperate. I'll go to an unmarked door in a run down brick building and give a password, and enter a windowless brick room lit entirely by bootleg incandescants hanging bare by their cords from the ceiling. Their glowing filaments will burn little green and blue squiggles into my vision, and I'll sidle up to the bar, take off my fedora, and ask for a Scotch on the rocks. When I'll lean back and watch as the gangsters and their molls dance in the harsh white light of bare incandescents.
"Hey buddy, you look like a guy who can appreciate a good light, you know wad I mean? You have any interest in a case of 120 Watts? I got a guy who brings them over by the truckload from Mexico. Real stuff, you know wad I mean? You could heat your house with these things."
And I'll picture my house, blackout curtains down, with those round, curving bulbs radiating brilliant white light from every socket. But it's not to be. Going to the speakeasy is one thing, but bourgeois virtue prevails, and I'll shake my head. When the g-men raid my home, there will be no incandescents found.