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The Laz Word: Put that light out!

Larry Neild is incandescent as he calls for a ban on exterior Christmas lights to save the planet

Published on December 8th 2009.

The Laz Word: Put that light out!

The Copenhagen Summit on Climate Change can’t be as big as the UN claims. If it was, Liverpool would have a stand there.

I have secreted away enough 100 watt, 60 watt and 40 watt bulbs to ensure the Neild household remains a shining example to good lighting for years to come.

The city has missed a trick to earn a place on the world map as an innovative place where the citizens take their carbon footprints seriously.

We should have banned private householders from dolling up their homes with fairy lights and illuminated Santas.

Some streets look like the Golden Mile as neighbours try to outdo each other with their tacky looking flickering lights.

I’m not a spoilsport, well maybe a little, but can you imagine the C02 emissions generated all of those illuminated households. Then there is the procession of kerb crawlers driving slowly down the streets to “admire” the festive lights. It’s all costly humbug and we’ll all pay the price when the Mersey breaks over the seawall in a few years time.

Many people, me included, have been forced to scooter around the supermarkets to snap up a lifetime’s supply of proper bulbs because some dim Eurocrat decreed we would all have to use low energy bulbs, the type that give you suicidal depression because they are so gloomy.

I have secreted away enough 100 watt, 60 watt and 40 watt bulbs to ensure the Neild household remains a shining example to good lighting for years to come.

Those bulbs are essential, unlike

exterior Christmas lights. It seems strange that people pay a fortune to light up their homes and then sit inside surrounding by shadows cast by those awful 11w bulbs, unable to enjoy their own spectacle.

Even the city council’s city centre lights use low energy bulbs (and it shows), but our civic Father Christmases could have gone further by bringing in a by-law ahead of the Copenhagen gathering, a meeting destined to create so much hot air and little else.

A ban could be ushered in on ‘elf and safety grounds: the potential risk to people suffering seizures. Those flickering displays must be worse than the ‘flash photography’ we are constantly warned about when watching ITN reports.

Some local authorities are thinking of switching off street lamps as a way of contributing to the battle against global warming.

The lights would be set to go off after the witching hour, just enough time to get safely tucked up in bed before the Dark Ages return.

Not sure how that would work in Liverpool where the nightlife continues until sunrise. And I can’t imagine a return of the council team that, in years gone by, turned on the street lights and off again soon after drinking up time in the local alehouses.

We need street lights for safety and security. But we don’t need Christmas decorations on houses, lighting up the sky at night.

Wouldn’t it have been great to see the Copenhagen agenda and there, taking pride of place, an item called the Liverpool Motion for the Abolition of Christmas Lights on Private Dwellings. It would make you proud to be a Scouser, even if it would be too dark to catch a glimpse of those smiles.

Remember this, though, about Copenhagen. During the two week duration of the gathering, the world’s population will have increased by three million. We need to throw some light on what is a very serious subject – so long as it’s not Christmas lights.

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22 comments so far, continue the conversation, write a comment.

Odiously Flippant ToryDecember 7th 2009.

Employers - avoid employing unlucky people by throwing half the application forms straight into the bin.

Hal O'GenDecember 7th 2009.

Larry, I cannot believe you have bought every lightbulb you can find and are castigating the people for putting a bit of illuminated sleigh action outside their houses. Tsk, tsk.

DigDecember 7th 2009.

Why's that?

Lord StreetDecember 7th 2009.

My chief scientist tells me that energy-saviing lights will get much better as the technology of light-emitting diodes is developed over the next ten years. Those fluourescent lights, like DAB radio, are obsolescent tripe.

Lamp ShadeDecember 7th 2009.

Low energy bulbs are dangerous as they contained mercury. If you break one you are supposed to evacuate the room for 24 hours and call Environmental Health to deal with the hazard. Don't believe me, just Google 'dangers of low energy bulbs'. I hope I've managed to shed some light on this very interesting topic. Like Laz I have also stockpiled loads of proper bulbs. When the supermarkets announced they were being phased out customers flocked by a plague of locusts and cleared the shelves in hours. If low enery bulbs are that good why did this happen. There were bigger queues for bulbs than we saw during the great bread strike.

Tipping pointDecember 7th 2009.

Shoes last twice as long if only worn every other day

DescartesDecember 7th 2009.

My neighbours go mental for Christmas. Big switch on was last night, I walked by at around 10pm and I'd swear I've got a bit of a tan this morning.

DigDecember 7th 2009.

I wonder if Larry and the family sits around the tv and dinner table wrapped in blankets so the heating doesn't warm up the world either.

Tung StenDecember 7th 2009.

Riverpool Christmas rights come on at four oclock. All energy saving bulbs and are fully bright by eleven oclock when time to switch off again

Jack O'LanternDecember 7th 2009.

Candles produce CO2 and many other nasty pollutants.

ScroogeDecember 7th 2009.

Save money at Christmas by returning last year's cards to the sender with the simple inscription "Same to you".

Liverpool WagDecember 7th 2009.

That's not a very good tip, Dig

Phil AmentDecember 7th 2009.

Laz, I think you are exaggerating the gloominess of energy-saving bulbs – you can just buy a brighter one to replace a dim one! - However a man with your position and influence could get something done about the restaurant at the Lady Lever Art Gallery. Once it was cheerily lit by overhead glass globes throwing a golden light, but now the bulbs have been replaced with something that casts a light that can only be described as blue-grey. Perhaps whilst you are about that you might see if you can get the old black wooden chairs back that harmonised with the tables and Arts and Crafts interior. Some lunatic has replaced them with some ugly plastic chairs with highly inappropriate chrome-plated legs that noisily tangle under the table. Plus the plastic seats cause sweat rash in the bum crevice. I bet they were really expensive too – what a waste of money. They should bring back the rope.

XY08 MHJDecember 7th 2009.

Avoid expensive personalised number plates by simply changing your name by Deed Poll to match your current registration number...

GordoDecember 7th 2009.


Di OdeDecember 7th 2009.

Get ten times the life out of ordinary tungsten lightbulbs by plunging them into boiling water before switching them on.

Captain JackDecember 7th 2009.

They still talk about it where I live. People's garages are filled with box upon box of 100 watt bulbs. One kind neighbour even offered to exchange some shares in a local keycutting shop for enough bulbs to decorate her Christmas turkey.

AnonymousDecember 7th 2009.

A drainpipe with at rollerskate at either end makes an ideal 'car' for snakes.

Barack ObamaDecember 7th 2009.

That's a bit extreme of Larry, but very proactive, taking them down from people's houses himself. Well done. I say. You are like a Milk Tray man for the globally warmed age

Mrs ClausDecember 7th 2009.

We need a bit of Christmas cheer during these gloomy times. In the scale of things a few decorations around the house won't make any difference to the planet. Lighten up Mr N and enjoy it while you can. Maybe one day we'll all be back to candlelight.

DigDecember 7th 2009.

L.E.D's are the future of energy efficient lighting. Most car manufacturers have already embraced this technology. It's time home lighting caught up.

DoomwatchDecember 7th 2009.

Doomed! We're all doomed so lets make the most of it will we can. When politicians start to show concern about the planet you know they are quietly sh****** themselves cos its a lot worse than they are letting on. It'll be back to living in caves and cooking over open fires for many of us before too long.So please Mr Laz, let us enjoy our colourful Christmas in blissful ignorance of tough times that lay ahead. Have a very Happy Christmas - it could be our last.

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