December 11, 2002

Red Rum. Reeeeddddd Ruuuuummmm! When

Red Rum. Reeeeddddd Ruuuuummmm!

When it comes to Christmas decorations, I'm a lowest common denominator kinda gal. If it lights up and/or is shiny or tacky or plastic--great! I'm not gonna strap eight tiny flashing reindeer and a glowing Santa to my roof, but I'll enjoy your home if you have. Wanna incorporate Frosty and Rudolf in your front yard nativity scene, gazing adoringly with vacant cartoon eyes at the baby Jesus? Fabulous! I'll slow down to appreciate the view, chuckle, and move on. Mix your media, mix your messages, plug it in and/or inflate it, and I'll take the long circuitous route home just to be able to tell folks what I saw on my drive.

However, there is one decorating element that does not fill me with Christmasy joie de vivre--red lights. I'm not talking about the bulb on your mechanical Rudolf's nose, either, or the occasional strand mixed in with all the other stuff. I mean the homes that do all of the window candles and trim in red. I know that red is supposed to convey the warmth of a cozy hearth, that it's one of the two main Christmas colors, etc., but I'm sorry, it just doesn't work that way when used on a large scale. It looks like your house has channeled the spirit of the Overlook Hotel, and frankly, it frightens me. Not from a "how gauche" perspective, but from an "AAACCK! Hell on earth! Axe murderers!" perspective.

My horror of the red stems from my fifth grade year, when for some light Christmas reading I picked up The Amityville Horror, and scared myself into a fugue state with it. The most lasting image from that book was the glowing red pig eyes that appeared in the windows of the home. After reading that book, every time I saw a lightbulb reflected in a window pane, I jumped, and it was in this heightened state of fear that my mom took me with her to visit a friend, who had incidentally done all of her window lights in red. I spent two hours convinced that I was surrounded by pig demons, and have never fully recovered from the trauma. To this day, houses bathed in the all over glow of red chill my heart.

So if you want to make your home into the Eye of Sauron for the holiday season, feel free, but don't be surprised if I give your expression of holiday cheer a pass.

Posted by Big Arm Woman at December 11, 2002 05:51 AM
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