I'm going to start off with something dumb I did yesterday. After all, if you can't make fun of yourself, you shouldn't make fun of anyone else - and I like poking fun at others.
This year we succumbed to peer pressure and put up some holiday lights outside. First, we got a programmable outlet-type thing that we programmed to go on at dusk (it has a light sensor) and stay lit for eight hours or so. Then, we put some lights on shrubs, trees, etc. I thought it looked so nice, why not add some more? To get to our front door, you have to go up a short flight of stairs. Since well-lit stairs are a good thing, I added some lights to both sides of them.
Dusk arrived. The lights went on! And off. And on. And off. They were doing an annoying, slow blink. All of them (including the trees and shrubs) at once. Those new lights I wove in and out of the stair railing must be the problem. After digging in a box, I found some more. I plugged them in and let them sit for awhile. They did not flash, hurray! I took them outside and plugged them in where the left-side-of-the-stair lights were plugged in. After sitting for awhile, they did not blink. Cool! I can just replace the original left-of-stair lights with a new strand and all will be good. So, I unwove the original left strand and wove in the new left strand and plugged it in again.
Dusk arrived. The lights went on! And off. And on. And off. Crap! It must be the right-of-the-stair lights that are causing the problem. Sick of weaving and unweaving the awkward icicle lights through the stair railings, I just unplugged the right-of-stair lights. The lights went on! And off. And on. And off. goddammit! And then I realized....
Our programmable outlet-type thing is near the stairs. When it is dusk, the lights turn on. However, when the lights on the stairs went on, it was bright enough that the sensor thought it wasn't dusk, so the lights turned off. Once the lights were off, the sensor realized it was dusk and turned the lights back on. And so started the endless cycle of on, off, on, off....
Needless to say, there will not be any holiday lights on our stairs.