July 18, 2009

My “Free” Light Bulb.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 11:40 am

porchlight-boxYesterday we received our “free” squiggly light bulb. It was left on the door to the House by the Parkway in a box hanging from the door handle by way of a clever cardboard hanging thing, which contained the following message:

WE MISSED YOU! But don’t miss out on the savings! Install this bulb and save up to $30 in electricity costs over the lifetime of the bulb. Don’t get left in the dark – simple actions matter!

The delivery of my “free” light bulb was part of “Project Porchlight,” which is sponsored (i.e. paid for) by New Jersey’s Clean Energy Program and the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities.

Let me say this about that.

Dear “Free” Light Bulb People:

I don’t want the damned thing. I hate these squiggly light bulbs and the ridiculous propaganda that comes with them. I don’t intend to use my “free” squiggly light bulb or any other squiggly light bulbs until there are no incandescent light bulbs available in the stores or on the black market (which will certainly spring up).

I’d throw the damned thing away, but noooooooo, because the damned thing has mercury in it, thankyouverymuch. I suppose I could burn up some gasoline driving my “free” light bulb to a recycling center. Better yet, how about you burn up some gasoline and drop by to pick the damned thing up. Please let me know when you’ll be in the neighborhood, and I’ll leave the damned thing hanging on my front door where you left it.

The House by the Parkway


  1. Jimbo, I replaced all the bulbs in house with those squigly things. Not to save money but to keep from having to replace bulbs. Those things last forever and power surges don’t seem to bother them. Out here in the sticks we get more than our share of power surges and I was replacing bulbs at least once a week somewhere in the house.

    Comment by GUYK — July 18, 2009 @ 12:41 pm

  2. Jim:

    Hold onto it and I’ll take it off your hands the next time I see you. I will even pay $.10 per month for storage.


    Comment by joseph — July 18, 2009 @ 2:31 pm

  3. Those bulbs are kind of like swastikas. If they weren’t the affiliated symbol of cultish dumbassery and an entire bullshit political party, I’d be totally cool with them, for pretty much the reasons Guyk states. I have used them begrudgingly, just ’cause I like the shape (who doesn’t love squiggles?) and they really do last longer, but I’d also sooner shove one up Al Gore’s carbon footprint-free ass than a regular one…just because.

    Comment by Erica — July 18, 2009 @ 3:25 pm

  4. I had one. It made everything look like a waiting room… and you want such ambiance in your living room, of course.
    I trashed it.
    Yeah, yeah, I know I know, now they make ’em all soft and lovely… I don’t care. I agree with Erica.

    Comment by LeeAnn — July 18, 2009 @ 4:01 pm

  5. I like the new light bulbs. Since I replaced all the bulbs in my home with the new ones, I have seen the savings on my electric bill. What’s wrong with them? They last a long, long time, save energy and money, and are great for the planet we live on. It’s a win-win situation to me. What could be your problem with them?
    Just asking.

    Comment by Kevin — July 18, 2009 @ 8:43 pm

  6. Kevin, what’s not to like ?
    Leaving aside the concept of using tax dollars to give “free” bulbs to people who may or may not want them, by legislative fiat, and most likely through someone’s brother-in-laws lightbulb warehouse,

    The bulbs give crappy light. I have a few and prefer incandescent lumination.
    Energy savings? I have a wonderful device called an off switch. I don’t leave a light on unless I need the illumination, and then I want quality light.
    I dilike the thought of putting on a haz-mat suit every time a bulb breaks. I haven’t heard of any incidents of tungsten toxicity from broken incandescent bulbs over this past century.
    They work lousy in the cold. Personally, I like a bit of light in my (nonheated) garage when I’m getting in or out of the car.

    And finally, I very much dislike some government dimwit who has bought into this “global warming” psuedoscience telling me what I must do to “save the Planet”.

    I live in an area that 10,000 or so years ago was buried under a mile of ice. Somehow, those glaciers melted without the help of humans. Climate, by it’s very nature, is constantly changing. To think it can be made static, and that we have the power to do so, is simpleminded at best, though delusional may be a more accurate term.

    Answer your question, Kevin ?

    Comment by Angie — July 18, 2009 @ 9:36 pm

  7. I’m with Angie.


    Comment by Jim — July 18, 2009 @ 10:04 pm

  8. Wow. They don’t let you pump your own gas and then they tax you and buy you a squiggly light bulb and tell you to use it on your porch light.

    You make FL seem so frickin’ charming. Gators and all… well, you have gators too, they are just disguised a politicians.

    Comment by Bou — July 18, 2009 @ 10:54 pm

  9. I built a new house in Kalifornia. The law says 50% of lights have to be fluorescent. Okay, easy, wait until they are done and replace them. No, not easy, they don’t screw in, they plug and and if they burn out they are $10 to replace. Don’t you just love the government controlling your life. I can’t wait for universal health care from the goverment.

    Comment by Brian "Proud Air Force Vet" — July 18, 2009 @ 11:22 pm

  10. Send it on down and I’ll send you the film….

    Comment by Sam — July 19, 2009 @ 12:41 am

  11. Why not allow the sale of both kinds of light bulbs and let the marketplace decide? People should be able to choose the lightbulbs that they want. Or would that make too much sense?

    Comment by Kevin — July 19, 2009 @ 3:14 am

  12. Keven…yeah, it does make too much sense for the dim-a-crits. Just take a look at the cap and trade scam and the health bill scam and the bail out scams and giving the auto companies to the UAW scam…none let the marketplace work…and it will not be long before we do not have a marketplace to work…comrade.

    Comment by GUYK — July 19, 2009 @ 8:27 am

  13. Whut Angie, E, and LeeAnn said.

    Comment by dogette — July 19, 2009 @ 9:16 am

  14. Like I keep asking, folks…when’s the tipping point coming? Of course, in NJ, our dimwitted voters are all set to return “Corzine The Asshat” to office.

    Comment by JerseyJerry — July 19, 2009 @ 10:13 am

  15. I started buying the things years ago, for a couple of reasons – save on the ol’ electric bill, and because they last so much longer (handy when they’re in an inconvenient location, like top of a stairway). Now I’m ashamed of them because of all the carbon-footprint green-earth AlGore-ism.


    Comment by Dave Merriman — July 19, 2009 @ 1:36 pm

  16. A light bulb does not mean the end of our way of life.

    Comment by Kevin — July 19, 2009 @ 7:54 pm

  17. Kevin, it’s the principal of the thing. After mandating what kind of light bulbs you can use, you will be told when you can use them, how long you can use them and so on and so on and so on… No thought was given to the dangers of fluorescent light bulbs, nor to the disposal issues or the cost to produce them, but, by Bast, because Al Gore says so, you’re gonna use them or else.
    Fuck those twisty little mercury bombs. I’ve been stocking up on incandescent bulbs by the case full. And when they run out, it’s back to candles. I will not use one of those things in my house. I tried one in a kitchen light. It takes fifteen minutes to get up to it’s full light output, by then I’m done with what I need to do and the light has been turned off, anyway. We don’t use a lot of lights in our house. Right now the only light in the place is my monitor. All my outside lighting is solar. Last month our electric bill was 39.00 dollars and that was without even trying. It might be up a few bucks since I put the window air conditioners in, but we hardly use them at all, only on the weekends. I’d like to see how many of these nouveau greenies have electric bills that low.

    Comment by gregor — July 19, 2009 @ 8:41 pm

  18. These bulb s***! They don’t fit into most light fixtures! Try getting one that’s equivalent to 100W to fit in any of your lamps with shades–it’s too damn big! Same problem with the ceiling fixtures! I like a bright light, so I won’t be buying any more of these “green” bulbs. (I bought one package to try them)Unfortunately, Sams Club has apparently bought into the “climate change” b.s.–they no longer sell incandecents, only the “Al Gore” bulbs.

    Comment by John — July 19, 2009 @ 10:35 pm

  19. I wonder what Al Gore’s typical electric bill is?

    Comment by Kevin — July 19, 2009 @ 11:14 pm

  20. Kevin, if you prefer the “eco-bulbs”, that’s fine, by all means buy and use them.

    I just have a problem a.) being forced (all too soon) to buy what I consider an inferior product (you don’t, and that’s fine. That’s why there is a free market), and b.) using taxpayer money to distribute “free” products.

    Just re-read some Bob Heinlein, and a quote springs to mind –

    “There is no greater tyranny than to force a man to buy something he doesn’t want because *you* think it would be good for him”.

    Comment by Angie — July 20, 2009 @ 6:08 am

  21. Here ya go Kevin, I dug this up just for you:


    Comment by Erica — July 20, 2009 @ 9:13 am

  22. Here in California, you won’t be able to get 60w light bulbs at all after a certain year (I forget when this goes into effect). But the light bulb companies have found a loophole: they are now selling 55w bulbs! For some reason, they are allowed to do that. It makes me laugh. Like 5w would make any difference.

    I too can’t stand those squiggly jobs. The light they put out is ugly! But I have to admit, I have broken down and bought a couple for hard to reach places, and for places where I want to just leave the light on all the time.

    Comment by DogsDontPurr — July 20, 2009 @ 4:33 pm

  23. Be sure and use it then discard it in your trash. They have mercury in them. Soom every landfill will be a superfund site.

    Comment by recondo32 — July 20, 2009 @ 5:14 pm

  24. What’s wrong with them??? Where should I start!? First, they have been proven to increase epileptic activity in people like my husband, who have epilepsy. Second, if you don’t leave them on for at least 15 minutes, you don’t actually save any power – turning them on and off quickly as you grab something out of a room is actually a waste of energy with these bulbs. Third, they have mercury in them, so if you break one you have to open all the windows in your home and vacate your home until it’s aired-out.
    I have stocked up on boxes of the old light bulbs. I plan to keep stocking up so I have a good supply once they’re no longer available. But now that I know you can get 55w bulbs still in California (thanks DogsDontPurr!), I’ll just stock up on those.

    Comment by Julie — July 27, 2009 @ 5:30 pm

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