Brilliant Jackass

There’s one in every neighborhood

Rodney Lacroix
4 min readNov 28, 2022


Photo by Matt Nelson on Unsplash

As my house illuminates the darkness of the neighborhood with a brilliance only seen in supernovas, I come to this harsh realization:

I’m that guy.

Here in the United States, it’s barely past Thanksgiving, but I’ve just finished putting up my outside Christmas Lights. Mind you, I hate doing this. In fact, the kids refer to the day I put up outdoor Christmas decorations as “Swear Day.”

I’ve invented more curse phrases during holiday decoration time than I’d care to admit. I consider myself a pioneer of swears, in this aspect.

But, thanks to global warming, I decided this year to put the lights up early.

I live in New Hampshire where our swimming pools are open roughly 3 days out of the year, and during those 3 days, they are only opened for use as ice skating rinks. I can tell you from personal experience that trying to string lights on bushes when it is only 20 degrees(F) is an exercise in anger management.

So, when we had a succession of 60 to 70 degree days here in November (people in the southern states are reading this and already shivering), I decided it was a good time to put them up.

This process usually takes about three or four hours and 16 trips back to Home Depot to buy more lights because I forgot to throw out all the strings that no longer worked at the end of the previous season. While purchasing replacement lights, I usually also buy additional lights because, clearly, I enjoy withdrawing from my retirement fund to pay my electrical bill.

This year I expanded my display a bit and added some candy canes and icicle lights. I also had a ladder to climb my nearly dead tree to put lights on it. Normally, I’d actually scale this tree to do it, but I’m now in my 50s and climbing the ladder sounds exhausting. Shimmying up a tree is certainly out of the question after the groin-splinter incident of 2019.

I finished my display and put all the boxes away. My wife bought an inflatable Baby Yoda (YES I KNOW IT IS GROGU CALM DOWN) holding a candy cane as part of the display. However, his motor was defective and would only turn on for a second, stop…



Rodney Lacroix

Rodney Lacroix is the author of numerous books, including “The Vasectomy Diaries” and “Romantic as Hell.” He has four kids and is super tired, you guys.