Posted on Aug 19th, 2009 by Allison (In the Garden, Soapbox, Whatever)

Bad, evil lightEvery night I take a little stroll through my little garden, listening to the crickets, frogs and bubbling fountain. Keeping an eye out for slime trails so I can dispose of the giant slugs that invade my plants, and curse the obnoxiously bright “safety light” on the back of the building that illuminates the rock wall and my garden with an unnatural peach colored glow. Safety, schmafety. It’s nearly as bright as day in the areas where it shines. I hate light pollution – and it seems to follow me wherever I go. I like night to feel like night!

“Darkness is as essential to our biological welfare, to our internal clockwork, as light itself.” -Verlyn Klinkenborg, “Our Vanishing Night,” National Geographic magazine, November 2008

The horrible light was off for the first year and a half I lived here – and then, all of a sudden there it was. No amount of objecting or begging moved the property manager to turn it off.. Since then I’ve been plotting ways I could destroy it, but it’s simply been out of my reach. if I had access to a 15 foot ladder I’d have climbed up and pulled out the bulb long ago. I’ve also been petitioning the condo manager to turn it off…. going so far as to get signatures from other residents in my building that they wouldn’t object to it being dark out there.

I love a dark night!Well. as I opened the door to take my nightly stroll this evening I was greeting by the most wonderful sight. DARKNESS. It’s so dark that I can barely see anything but the stars! I’m so happy I could cry.

Next week I’m going to hang up my orange twinkle lights on my patio – which I haven’t used for almost two years (useless with that bright light shining). So drop by and sit out on my patio with me at night… it’s going to be great!

And keep your fingers crossed that the darkness is permanent!

How do you feel about the lighting in your area?

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Comments

Robert on August 19th, 2009 at 5:34 am

LOL… love the photo..


Ashley Rae on August 19th, 2009 at 8:03 am

Oh yes. Light pollution is a very touchy subject for you… Remember when you got the young men in our old ward to throw something at the lamppost so the light wouldn’t shine in our window? lol… good times.

Lighting in my area is great. Lots of trees, so even if there ARE streetlights, the trees block them from our window view.


Jana on August 19th, 2009 at 9:14 am

It’s so good to hear that you have darkness! I know what an issue this has been for you. I love living in a small mountain town where the stars are the most visible lights around.


Robert on August 19th, 2009 at 9:31 am

“Remember when you got the young men in our old ward to throw something at the lamppost so the light wouldn’t shine in our window?”

Or you could’ve bought blinds and curtains..???… : )

Years ago I visited some friends up in the boonies who lived on a farm. I was stunned at how bright the stars were from their place. Living in a city I just was used to the city lights obscuring it… So I do understand your desire for clear blackness…


Jennifer Pearce on August 19th, 2009 at 9:36 am

Yes, I wholeheartedly agree that the less light there is at night the better. I really miss seeing the stars…


Allison on August 19th, 2009 at 10:37 am

Thank you all for your support….

I didn’t have the young men in my Sunday School class throw something at the lamp…. I had them cut the wire!

Actually, they offered, when they heard how badly I hated that lamp. They were new lights on the street – those obnoxious (but cute when the lights are off) acorn top lamps that shine light every direction – very brightly – and the one was completely level with my back deck and bedroom window. Couldn’t spend anytime on the deck at night without the lights blinding us.

Their parents hated the lights too, and the boys had cut the wire of the one in front of their house…. so they offered to do the same for me :) And it worked for a few months, til Sandy City discovered it, fixed it, and welded the access box shut so they couldn’t do it again……


paul on August 19th, 2009 at 12:18 pm

we have lots of stairs, all with little low voltage walkway lights. They are to keep idiots from falling down the stairs in the dark. This keeps our home owners insurance happy. We have a huge bright pole light at the top of the stairs where we park our cars. I,m Happy about that because we are quite aways down the hill from our cars and I think the light keeps our lovely crack head nieghbors from doing any damage. The good thing is, that we can hardly see the light through the trees and our bedroom is on the bottom floor on the other side of the house. Blinds are a big help.


Robert on August 19th, 2009 at 12:43 pm

Our neighborhood has no lighting. It’s spooky at night. The people downstairs have asked us to pay 1/2 the cost of an electrician so we can get a flood light outside. Javier and I- and them – we’ve all been robbed in the last two months. Cars broken into. I had to have the side of my door repaired as they forced it open with a cro-bar. Javier had his GPS stolen…..

Long Island is surely not Sandy city though, and if I were in a safer area I’d prefer to keep it as dark as it is now.


Kristin on August 19th, 2009 at 12:46 pm

I am so happy for you. I know it has caused you much sorrow for a long time. I hope it stays out. :)


Allison on August 19th, 2009 at 12:55 pm

I like tasteful outdoor lighting, like little lights that shine downward onto steps. But the bright lights that shine in your eyes and turn night into day just have to go.

Rob – get a motion sensor light. That way you get to enjoy the darkness when no one is sneaking around – and when they are it lights up to alert you.

Visit http://www.darksky.org for suggestions on lighting that is safe but doesn’t contribute to light pollution.

Here, specifically, for safety lighting.


kaylyn on August 19th, 2009 at 1:55 pm

Cheers to the evil light being out! It sounds like it was aweful.

I wish I lived closer, I would totally come hang out on your patio. :(


irene on August 19th, 2009 at 7:53 pm

:o) I’m happy for your darkness.


Chris on August 20th, 2009 at 2:46 pm

I know that has irked you for quite some time–enjoy the night, you and the vampires lurking in your garden. :)


Michelle on August 23rd, 2009 at 7:12 am

lol lol I just love your passion for things that irritate you or make you happy.

I do believe you were a vampire in a former life, or perhaps a fish that loved the dark waters.

My neighborhood has street lights but they don’t annoy me. They aren’t too bright and they don’t shine into my backyard at night. What annoys me is the sun that shines in AZ 363 days of the year. We had a cloudy morning yesterday and I was thrilled.


Allison on August 23rd, 2009 at 5:22 pm

When Kristin lived in Las Vegas, she referred to it as “incessant sunshine” ….

I enjoy a sunny day, but am also delighted with the cloudy ones. And I love misty fog.


Kerri on August 25th, 2009 at 1:28 pm

That is one of the reasons Jim and I love our property so much. Every night we take a stroll or just sit in our comfy outdoor recliners and admire the stars and take in the beautiful sounds of nature. We love being in our own little corner of the earth. The stars seem to be so much closer there. Our grandkids love watching for falling stars. Hope you get to continue to enjoy the beauty of the darkness. :)


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