Sunday, April 29, 2012

Energy efficient light bulb

When I see these four words together, a specific image pops into my mind.  It was a picture painted by an article I read a couple of years ago about the oldest, still working light bulb – at that time 110 years old.  It dangles from a line keeping watch over fire engines in a small town in northern California – a nightlight for the brave machines resting until their next call to duty. The fragile line of spiral carbon filament inside the hand blown bulb remains constantly illuminated.  It has glowed that way since my grandparents were children, since their parents were newlyweds.  

The product of true capitalism, its inventor competed against several others to invent the best bulb.  The light’s success is suppose to be due to “good old fashioned engineering," and to some, it serves as a reminder of how some things were better made in the past.  All of the other competitors' bulbs, including Edison’s if my memory serves me correctly, burned too quickly and too bright, until they had nothing left to do but explode.  All except for this one bulb, which just got brighter with the increasing voltage.
Today, the bulb has grown a little dim - at least the image of it in my mind has it glowing a little dimmer.  But it brightens up a bit when hearing stories of good things gone by. 

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