23 October 2009

My Worthless Psychic Power

Filed under: Reflections — ktismatics @ 4:19 pm

LightingpictureI’ve realized for some time now that I seem to possess an uncanny ability to extinguish streetlights. I’ll be walking along at night when the streetlight above my head suddenly blinks out. I can’t control this power consciously, and of course it doesn’t happen with every light I pass. But it does happen often enough to make me wonder whether I’m blessed, or cursed, with a form of telekinesis. There seems to be no good or bad use to be made of this power, but then again bending forks with mental energy isn’t about to save the world either.

Last night was a twin killing: two light-snuffings in a single half-hour walk. The first incident was ordinary enough: walking directly beneath the light fixture, the filament suddenly blows and goes dark. The second one, which happened about fifteen minutes later, traced a different arc. I was approaching the fixture, maybe thirty paces away, when the light went out — a more long-range influence than usual, but within acceptable tolerances for this sort of thing in my experience. As I passed directly under the lamp I looked up and noticed that the filament was still emitting just the slightest amount of yellowish-orange light. I walked on. About thirty paces past the streetlight I stopped, turned, and glanced back. In that instant, as I watched, the lamp switched to full-on brightness again. It was as if the lamp had been playing dead to trick me. I smiled in acknowledgment and headed for home.



  1. This would be mighty nice for Reader’s Digest ‘Life in these United States’.


    Comment by Ray Fuller — 23 October 2009 @ 4:38 pm

  2. It’s that last sentence isn’t it? If I’d written “Even as I smiled in acknowledgment I was plotting my revenge,” it would still be cutesy. Maybe if the light had said “chaos reigns”…


    Comment by john doyle — 23 October 2009 @ 5:56 pm

    • Especially the last line, but a lot of it, really. I think it’s good, I wouldn’t say ‘cutesey’ really, because that would apply only if it were IN ‘Life in These United States’, which would mean we wouldn’t tune in to it as a style. Since you wrote it here, it recalls and makes one remember something we’d never have thought of again, and maybe never had conciously.

      I still get a chuckle at your going to that awful ‘let’s write our books to sell’ workshop thing. One of the funniest things you ever reported, esp. when the guy came on here.


      Comment by Ray Fuller — 23 October 2009 @ 6:11 pm

    • I should drop The Amazing Dave a note, see if he’s planning any more public reading performances. I’m sure I could develop this telekinesis thing into the beginning of a VERY commercial fantasy novel.


      Comment by john doyle — 23 October 2009 @ 6:16 pm

  3. You must only use this power for evil!


    Comment by Mikhail Emelianov — 23 October 2009 @ 8:49 pm

    • I’m afraid it controls me — God knows what will come of it.


      Comment by john doyle — 23 October 2009 @ 9:56 pm

  4. How do the stats work, do you count number of clicks on the site, or the number of clicks on pages?


    Comment by the voice of parodic reason — 23 October 2009 @ 9:52 pm

    • This is an odd question. Do you mean the Sitemeter thingy? It keeps track of clicks per day and page views per day. It keeps monthly totals on these numbers. It also shows, for the last 100 visitors, what time they came and what city/country they came from. I use only the free service; I don’t know what else you get if you pay them money. Is that what you wanted to know, vopr?


      Comment by john doyle — 23 October 2009 @ 10:00 pm

  5. the system is different on google analytics, which i now use on blogger, that’s why i’m asking. but that total which you can put on the front page, does it show page views per day, or visits to the site?


    Comment by the voice of parodic reason — 23 October 2009 @ 10:12 pm

  6. I’ve often been struck by modern street lights’ tendency to blink off and then back on again after taking a break. As it seems to be a generic thing, I suspect that they are designed to do this either to conserve power or to prevent overheating or perhaps a bit of both. On the other hand perhaps it does happen to you more than to the rest of us in which case…


    Comment by samcarr — 28 October 2009 @ 3:08 pm

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