“I want to see what I’m eating”


‘Let there be light. Very bright light.’

We were about to introduce “Tell No One,” a really great multi-watchable movie (I’ve seen it at least a dozen times) to our multi-Thanksgivingable pals Jim and Phyllis (they’ve been Turkey Guests at least 20 times) when Jim says, “I think we could dim those lights, can’t we?”

Jim, bless his dimmer-loving heart, just secured a Thanksgiving invitation for at least the next 20 years. Or as long as I can lift a 20-pound turkey. (Probably not 20 years, but one can hope.)

That’s Jim (in red shirt) describing a cheese. (Note turned-off ceiling lights) Of course, it is still daytime. Barely

See, I hate bright lights. Especially bright ceiling lights. In fact, if it were up to me, there would be no ceiling lights. Just discreetly placed table lamps. Maybe a standing lamp here and there.

I am particularly fond of cabinet lighting, like this in the Ken & Barbie House *sigh*

But guess who loves lights, the brighter the better? Three guesses, and the first two don’t count.

A rare shot of Dude Man experiencing light that is too bright

Yes, Dude Man cranks up every light in the joint, mostly ceiling lights. Oh, I made sure there are plenty of tasteful lighting options in the Ken & Barbie House as well as in Amagansett. But The Dude prefers to just reach inside a doorway and flip on a ceiling-light switch. After he’s been in a room I consider it my mission to go around adjusting the dimmers on said ceiling lights to the lowest setting I can get away with. If I hear, “Who turned those lights down?!? I’m trying to work at the computer/play the piano/read my book here!!!” — then I know I wasn’t subtle enough.

In fact, in the shot at the top of this post, taken at last year’s T. Day Festivities (yes, Jim was there; right next to me, in fact) I swear Dude Man did not leave his chair to take this photo — he was really sneaking to the doorway to turn on that ceiling light.

The one ceiling light I absolutely adore. Mainly because it’s hardly ever turned on

I usually don’t mind his bright-light obsession too much. After all, that’s why god made Separate Rooms. With doors. It’s usually only a Major Issue when we are dining. He turns on the blaring ceiling light, muttering “I want to see what I’m eating.” I turn it off and switch on a couple of dimmable options, muttering in reply “You’re eating, not performing brain surgery.

My own kind of little lighting. In my own little room

Which leads me to the logical question: Why is it that bright-light-lovers are always matched with dimmer-lovers? In fact, I have never met two like-light-minded people. Let me know if you are the rare Lucky One who is half of such a couple. Or maybe not.

Amagansett, New York. November 2022



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8 thoughts on ““I want to see what I’m eating”

  1. Haha, don’t tell Dude Man but my grandpa couldn’t stand a dim dinner! Said the exact same thing. Your lighting is divine, btw. Lighting separates the fabulous from the less than fabulous, imo.

    • Isn’t it funny? Except for Jim-Who-Loves-Dimmers (and who can come to my dinners till the end of time as a result) it’s seems to be a Male Thing to demand bright lighting for dining. Go figure! Thank you for liking my lighting. I especially enjoy my sparkly disco-light. Which is the only ceiling light I have ever loved.

  2. Confirmed that my wife likes dim light and I like bright light — but as I age, my natural preference for bright lights (as in “bright lights big city,” meaning I like the feeling of liveliness both impart) is being pushed back by a desire to save on electricity, known to doctors as Senile Frugality.

    Oh, and the bright light I prefer is NEVER sunlight.

    • Hahahahaha! Love the fact that you hate sunlight. Somehow that is O-So-Edroso. And hey, I must admit that my fanatical light-dimming has itself dimmed over the last decade or so. And yes, there is the “saving electricity” thing. Which, I must admit, I use to justify my light-turning-out practices.

  3. Colleen

    Too funny. My mom was legally blind from her macular degeneration but that didn’t stop my dad from turning off lights all the time. My mom would say, “Bob, turn the lighs back on I can’t see.” He would do it for a short while and then turn them off again. It was funny watching the 2 of them after their 65-plus years together. When I asked him why he turned them off all the time, he said his mom did it. I tend to be a person who turns off the lights and I love the dimmer switch!

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