When I was a kid, I had no reason to believe that light fixtures did anything other than hang out on the ceiling and provide light. It never even crossed my mind that one might come down for a reason other than a routine cleaning or lightbulb change.
I lived a sheltered life as a child.
Once upon a time, before my girls were born, I was reading bedtime books to Judah and Wesley when I heard a startling crash from next door – my bedroom, which no one was supposed to be in. When I went in to check it out, I found that the motion of our ceiling fan had slowly jiggled loose the screws that held the light globe on. It fell straight down onto the footboard of our bed and shattered into a million and one pieces.
And then there was that peaceful night at the beginning of last summer. Roger and I were sleeping soundly in our pale green room – same bed, different house – when there was an even louder, definitely more startling crash. This time it was because 10 months earlier, Roger had installed the ceiling fan (a new one) just a little bit incorrectly. There was something weird about the ceiling or something – it made it hard to install the fan the right way. This time around, the whole fan dropped out of the ceiling and landed on the floor beside our bed. We still use that fan. Roger had to glue one blade back together, but otherwise, it works just fine. (And it’s installed correctly now too.)
I’m not entirely comfortable sleeping under a ceiling fan anymore.
Tuesday evening we had some friends over. I was taking my friend Linda up to the 3rd floor of the main house and her 2-year-old Micah was following us. He stopped at the bottom of the stairs, pointed up to the chandelier and said, “bad guy.” Poor little thing – he was scared to come up the stairs because of a light fixture. When he was really little, a light fixture fell onto the floor near him and scared him. Ever since, he’s been afraid of ceiling lights. He calls them “bad guys.”
I can sympathize.