Share This Page

Saturday's essay: Mom's good 'bulbs'

| Friday, Dec. 13, 2013, 8:57 p.m.

“Not my good bulbs! Don't use my good bulbs,” Mom would admonish from the family room couch as her three sons decorated the Christmas tree, usually during a busy, if not entirely chaotic, Christmas Eve.

The “bulbs” were Mom's precious glass and crystal ornaments from an era of craftsmanship long gone — at least as far as the trimmings of Christmas go. Sometimes, older brother Vinnie would put up one of those incredibly delicate ornaments — if only to get a rise out of Mom.

Each was a work of art, capturing beautiful scenes and Christmas sentiments in exquisite detail. But those fragile heirlooms were no match for King, the family's massive canine. And many didn't survive ol' King's curiosity.

So, year after year, those beautiful Christmas keepsakes remained tucked away in their original partitioned cardboard boxes — boxes so old that the cardboard was disintegrating.

Sadly, when time came to clean out the family house, the ornaments — what was left of them — were nowhere to be found. Like eldest brother Carmine's classic Lionel trains (which today would be worth a fortune), Mom's ornaments had disappeared into a black hole of neglect or disinterest — or, sadly, perhaps both.

Today, many years removed from those Christmas memories, the very best ornaments are the first ones on the tree at this son's house. And as each one in the collection is hung with care and fond memories, Mom always comes to mind.

— Bob Pellegrino

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.