Be scared lil’ light bulb on my Butter-Face Christmas Tree… Be VERY scared.

The tree we bought a few years back has what is called a “lifetime lights guarantee”

“If FOR ANY REASON, the lights on your new tree fail to function correctly, they are covered for replacement at 100%”.  This tipped it in for me and my tipsy family.  Troubleshooters we are not.

After completing my recent speaking tour to promote our fancy new Facebook Group “The Hobbled Firefighters of Northern Illinois”, I returned to my warm casa to find my loving family had lovingly erected and fully decorated the aforementioned tree in order to surprise me.

All except the lights.

The lower two-thirds of the tree looked great!  All of the strands of lights were shining brightly, enticing us to fully feel the warmth of Christmas grow within our hearts.

The top third?  Not so much.  Nary a light was lit.  I began to think of it as our “butter-face” Christmas Tree, if ya know what I mean….

No worries, I thought.  We got THE GUARANTEE.  Whistling Oh Tannenbaum by Sternschnuppe, I dialed up my Christmas Tree vendor.  A friendly teen-aged girl’s voice message greeted me.  I imagine the tree vendor sought out the lowest-paid employee with the best sounding voice to record the greeting.

“Like, Welcome to blablabla… important to us blablabla… extension, like, you may dial it now blablabla… If the lights on your Christmas tree are not working, please refer to our on-line troubleshooting guide.”

I was frazzled.  Did Amber just use the four-lettered word, TROUBLESHOOTING?  Hadn’t we purchased The Troubleshooting Guarantee?  Apparently not.  Maybe too much frothy egg nog had preceded the purchasement of the tree (maybe too much frothy eggnog made me use the imaginary word “purchasement”).  Fine print was not ignored, it just was too small and way too wavy to decipher.

Whistling The Theme From Jaws, I looked looked up the tree vendor’s site and quickly found their info on what I should do if the lights aren’t working.  I clicked on the PDF link and found myself staring at a list of nearly 27 steps- The lights must first be checked for broken bulbs or fizzled fuses.  Troubleshooting.

So beginning today, I will be starting on step number 1.

Strike that, step number zero first- make some more frothy egg nog.

It may take me a bit of time to individually friggin check every friggin light for the one lil bugger that has caused me so much angst and grief.  And fuoro and freneticism.


All of this has also taken a flavorful bite out of the time I have been giving to the next great idea.  Fire Critic and I are hard at work developing a fun new project that should be out very shortly.  It’s just the beginning of what should be an fantastic new year for all of us.

The pace at the Fire Daily Imaginarium Media Production Facilities Headquarters is fast, frantic, frenetic, and feverish.

And frenzied.  And furious.

If you haven’t already noticed- today’s post is brought to you by the letter “F”.  Fire Daily has frickin’ tied one on before noon.  Again.

Blog posts have taken a backer seat (hiccup) to the new project and our Butter Face Tree.  Funnily, this is a perfect time to roll out my newest project, “Two Thousand and Nine Favorite FireDaily Blog Posts from 2009”.  Some of them come from that dim-witted, loud-mouthed no-good, jack-wad, Jeremy Black (whose odoriferous stench continues to permeate even the darkest, dingiest corners of the FDMPFHQ Imaginarium).

Here’s the first re-post- aptly entitled “Got a Bad Attitude? Stay at Home…”

While FireGeezer has his coffee brewing this morning, I’m poppin’ another bottle of Bailey’s.

Be sacred, lil’ light bulb.

Be very scared.



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John Mitchell

Firefighter/Paramedic and a Lieutenant in suburban Chicago

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