Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Rocket Science

The light bulb over my kitchen sink burned out yesterday. My kitchen lacks natural light, so I need that light, even on a sunny day.

The division of labor in our house is fairly traditional. If a job requires a screwdriver or a hammer or a shovel, I am loathe to do it, not because I can't do it, but because I'm lazy. I don't want to have to go find a screwdriver or a hammer or a shovel, so I leave those jobs for my husband. Changing light bulbs almost falls into that category, but since my husband can live without the light while I like to have rooms lit up as much as possible, I change the light bulbs when they burn out (even the stairwell night lights, which require a screwdriver to change!).

So, yesterday when the light bulb over my kitchen sink burned out, I climbed right up on a step stool to get that puppy changed.

Screech screech screech. Screech screech screech.

That is the sound of a light fixture spinning uselessly while its light bulb refuses to come out. No matter how I tried, I could not get that light bulb loose, and I managed only to rotate the light fixture to the point where I was afraid the whole thing was going to fall down.

Much to my disgust, I had to leave the thing until my husband could help. I definitely needed an extra pair of hands to hold the fixture steady for me while I wrestled the bulb loose.

When he came home, I very briefly explained the situation. We didn't have time to discuss it in detail (read: I didn't have time to defend my helplessness!), because he had to rush our son off to basketball practice, but later when they were home again I heard screech screech screech coming from the kitchen. I poked my head in the door to offer my help. Nope. He said he could manage. Okey dokey.

I was busy overseeing homework and snack and all those things with the kids, so the screeches and bangs coming from the kitchen barely registered with me until I wandered in there to get a drink for one of the kids, only to see this:
A hole in the ceiling where my light fixture usually hangs!

My husband was sitting on the couch with a completely dismantled light fixture across his lap, screwdriver in hand. What happened? Something was stuck in the light fixture and jamming the light bulb. I was relieved to know my failure to change that light bulb was for legitimate reasons!

My daughter watched, open-mouthed, and asked in awe, "How hard is it to change a light bulb?"
I guess it depends on the fixture!

After a good 15 minutes of tinkering, we were back in business.
This prompted me to think of changing light bulb jokes. I tried to find a joke about how many mothers it takes to change a light bulb, but my brief googling came up dry. I did find some librarian jokes that cracked me up, though.
Q: How many librarians does it take to change a light bulb?
A: Three. One to change it, and two to talk about how unprofessional changing light bulbs really is. (If you don't think that's funny, you're not a librarian!)
Q: How many librarians does it take to change a light bulb?
A: Well, what type of light bulb do you need to change? (Reference Desk 101, folks)
I also found some homeschoolers-change-light bulb jokes here which really made me laugh, too. We do not homeschool, but we certainly fit the description in those jokes!


Anonymous said...

This made me laugh. Because ummmm:
Been there, done that. "This should be easy, I don't have to ask dh..." Ummm... Ummm... Shoot! Didn't work.... Daaaaaave?

I triage on a strictly time and aesthetics basis: if dh can do a faster job than I can, I assemble what he'll need and ask. If the job needs to be done "cleanly" and can't allow for mistakes, I ask him. Additional complication is that I'm left handed and I can't use some tools real well.

Anne said...

Thank you for the laugh tonight!

Anonymous said...

That light fixture story reminded me of so many incidents at our house.

And as a homeschooling mom, I loved the homeschoolers changing the lightbulb. So true.