The New Scrooge

Christmas came and went: after moaning about it for a couple of weeks, I jumped into the spirit sometime Friday afternoon (24 Dec), bought some presents, and my family had a nice Christmas.  We’re holding together; we have our health; God bless us, every one.

This year, I bought new Christmas tree lights.  I’m a procrastinator about this, and it used to be possible to get a full set of Christmas decorations up until 24 Dec.  But in recent years, it seems that the supply of goods has been adjusted to match demand, and perhaps come up a little short: for several year I’ve wanted to get new lights, and every year I went looking on Christmas week and came up empty.  (I would swap lights around on the sets we had, and be able to light up the tree.)  This year, determined to get new lights, I looked in a half-dozen stores before I found them.

My childhood memory of winter in New York City was that the outside was cold, but the inside was usually very warm.  The apartments I’ve lived in–even as an adult–were generally overheated during the winter, and the places outside home were generally toasty warm.

Today, my landlord is responsible for heating our apartment.  But it isn’t toasty anymore.  There’s a dollop of heat in the morning, another dollop in the evening, and just a little through the night if it’s below freezing.  The apartment is heated enough to comply with the law, so I can’t complain, but I’m still chilly, and I run an extra heater in our bedroom.

My office is the same way: a burst of heat in the morning, and a little more through the day if it’s really cold.  (The building lobby, however, is nice and toasty.)

We like to believe we have abundance in this country, but it’s getting nibbled away….

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