The Learning Curve

New tricks for an old dog.

Doodley Bulbs Are Squiggly!

Seth is wondering why the vast majority of people refuse to do the right thing, and have so far refrained from using compact fluorescent light bulbs. How many bloggers does it take to screw in a lightbulb?

Strike one against the idea is associating the product with the word “fluorescent.” This may be the technically correct nomenclature for the critters, but it has very little to do with the actual experience of them.

When I hear the word fluorescent, I think of the movie “Joe and the Volcano,” a great parable starring the very young Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan. The movie starts with Hank’s character reporting for work in his sputtering fluorescent-lit institutional hell of an office. The lighting makes everyone look like a corpse, and the one tiny bit of warmth in the place is a small incandescent table lamp that Hanks pulls out of his desk drawer when he arrives.

That’s how I think of fluorescent bulbs . . . cold with an irritating flicker. But that is not the reality of the compact fluorescent light bulbs that I purchased about a year ago in a package of four for ten dollars, or $2.50 apiece. These little money-saving gems have the same warm glow of a normal incandescent bulb, there is zero flicker, and no start-up delay. If you didn’t know they were compact fluorescent light bulbs by looking at their unusual shape, you’d never tell the difference.

The first thing I’d do is stop calling them compact fluorescent light bulbs. I’d think of a different name altogether. Something like “Doodley Bulbs,” or “Squiggly Bulbs,” in tacit recognition of the spiral shape many have. It would not be compact fluorescent light bulbs vs. light bulbs, it would be Doodley Bulbs vs. Incandescents, and I’d target mothers with small children.

You can grab a Doodley Bulb with your bare hand and not get burned. Doodley Bulbs are safer for infants and children. You can hardly set your home on fire with a Doodley Bulb, but incandescent bulbs are HOT, HOT, HOT! Why do you think they call them incandescent?

Grab Mom’s attention and the rest of the world will fall into line.

Mommy, how many people does it take to change a Doodley Bulb?

I don’t know, darlin’. We’ve never had to change one.

Are you STILL incandescent? Tsk.

Help! My home is incandescent!

Get Doodley. Be Squiggly.

“I can make you feel, but I can’t make you think”
Thick as a Brick

Read my update from March 9, 2008, I love compact fluorescent light bulbs.

Written by Tom Fox

01/03/2007 at 12:26 pm

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  1. […] CF Light BulbCompact Fluorescent Blubs – The two big fundamentalflaws from Taco’s Toppings, Doodley Bulbs AreSquiggly! from The Learning Curve, Screw the Future – BumperSticker from The Learning Curve, Confessions from […]

  2. […] I love compact fluorescent light bulbs. Published March 9, 2008 Environmental Action , energy saving , life Tags: CF light bulbs, compact flourscent, energy saving, Environmental Action A year ago in January I wrote “the reality of the compact fluorescent light bulbs that I purchased about a year ago in a package of four for ten dollars, or $2.50 apiece. These little money-saving gems have the same warm glow of a normal incandescent bulb, there is zero flicker, and no start-up delay.” See: Doodley Bulbs Are Squiggly! […]


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