Let There Be Lights

The front steps of our house are a pit of darkness. I swear, any ambient street light gets sucked into the risers like a black hole. This is something Susan’s wanted to address permanently for a while, and something we band-aid each Halloween and Christmas season when we install temporary lighting to temporarily provide some decor and  much-needed illumination.

After five holiday seasons of mounting twinklies to the handrail, it finally dawned on me that there might be a way to do that on a year-round basis, and so on the day after New Year’s Day (when all holiday lighting schemes and decorations should be mandated to come down) I put our lights and stuff away , and started thinking about a more permanent solution.

The first one I came up with was an LED-rich rope light, but it was way too garish. I’d been hoping to mount it behind the railing to minimize the excessive brightness, but I had to settle for attaching it along the bottom. It looked hokey and cheap.  Then when Susan and I returned that to Home Depot last week we explored other options and came up a plan that included four hooded deck-style lights that we could mount to the handrail facing and connect to an appropriate landscape lighting wire (rather than just an outdoor extension cord).

This worked out great because I was able to drill holes through the wood and tuck the wiring out of sight along the back of the railing. Susan surprised me with how jazzed she was at the long-overdue project, and how nicely it came together. And while we awaited nightfall I figured the light cast by the four single-digit watt bulbs to be far more decorative than actually functional.  We were both very pleasantly surprised at how well the end result exceeded our expectations:


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Will Campbell arrived in town via the maternity ward at Good Sam Hospital way back in OneNineSixFour and has never stopped calling Los Angeles home. Presently he lives in Silver Lake with his wife Susan, their cat Rocky, dogs Terra and Hazel, and a red-eared slider turtle named Mater. Blogging since 2001, Will's web endeavors extend back to 1995 with laonstage.com, a comprehensive theater site that was well received but ever-short on capital (or a business model). The pinnacle of his online success (which speaks volumes) arrived in 1997, when much to his surprise, a hobby site he'd built called VisuaL.A. was named "best website" in Los Angeles magazine's annual "Best of L.A." issue. He enjoys experiencing (and writing about) pretty much anything creative, explorational and/or adventurous, loves his ebike, is a better tennis player than he is horr golfer, and a lover of all creatures great and small -- emphasis on "all."