Silver Lake needs to lighten up over the holiday

Photo by Iriskh/Flickr

Garlands of twinkling lights hang from Eric Rhoden’s Silver Lake home to celebrate the season. But  Rhoden is disappointed that so many of his hillside neighbors – near and far – apparently prefer to spend the holiday season in the dark. He asks them to “lighten up:”

We live in a great part of town. Our hillsides and canyons are a great topography for holiday lights. But when I look out my window at the Franklin Hills across from me and the Hollywood Hills  …  all I see are a couple of strands of lights.  I imagine if only every house put a couple of strands of lights on a timer how bright it would be.  The hills would literally sparkle with holiday festivity!

I can hear the Scrooges out there saying that these lights waste energy.  I say they use energy to spread love.  How can that be a waste? And today’s energy efficient LED lights use very little electricity to send out the Christmas cheer.  What does waste energy is leaving them on all day.  For a couple of dollars, you can buy a timer so they will come on at dusk and shine as late into the night as you choose. Let’s show a little East Side Pride and light up the season!

Rhoden said he has hung five strands of lights across his home near Lucile Avenue and Micheltorena Street in wide hoops. “It looks spectacular.”


  1. Speaking for myself, I think the dark hills illuminated only by light shining yellow out of windows are perfect, enchanting, and good enough for every night of the year. Personally, I find Christmas lighting garish and think that it subtracts from the beauty of our hillsides after dark.
    I’m not saying “don’t put up holiday lights.” If you love them, you should. But please do remember, many people have different tastes and outlooks.

    • I feel exactly the same way Barbara. Plus my concern is that not all of us are of the Christian faith. That is what the lights are for, well Christmas too for that matter.

  2. Hurray to Eric and humbug to anyone compelled to pull the plug on the joy he’d like to see shine brighter.

  3. Too many ” stuffy” people have moved in to the neighborhood over the years .
    Its no longer a live and let be.
    There are too many rules and complaints .
    Big monster homes , and huge garages are ok right ?
    But xmas lights are a bother.
    Xmas is once a year , i’m not fond of it either , its not my thing .
    But seriously ? Get over it .
    Yes Barbara , people have different tastes and outlooks , and hanging up x-mas
    lights is one of them .

  4. I think the perfect expression for the season would be one of conservation. Keep it all dark and save a little for the planet why don’t you? I think Jesus, Yahweh, Allah, St. Nick and all the pagan spirits would rejoice!

  5. To each their own…

  6. Yeah Humbug, cause Christmas lights are whats raping our planet.

  7. @kit. I didn’t write the post that asked everyone to put up xmas lights. I simply answered it to say that not everyone cares to. What’s anti live-and-let-live about that?

    • Oh how you contradict yourself.

      “Personally, I find Christmas lighting garish and think that it subtracts from the beauty of our hillsides after dark.”

      As you say people have different tastes and outlooks, live and let live Barbara .

      • HOW, do I contradict myself? I said that if people want to put up lights they should. I said that, personally, I do not enjoy the lights that people put up. What is contradictory about that. I’m kind sick of people who accuse people of things if they don’t like what they think, without any reason for doing it. What kind of logic do YOU use?

  8. seriously … complaining about the neighbors NOT having christmas lights? if you miss them, why not try moving onto mohawk south of sunset where the school LCD sign burns 24/7 365. #firstworldproblems

  9. I don’t put up Christmas lights because I rent and what I might put up wouldn’t be visible.
    But when I drive here and there through Highland Park, Lincoln Park and other areas I am pleased to see the houses that people have chosen to decorate. Some have simple lights, some more ambitious displays while others make their front yards a full display.
    I don’t think: This is a Christian espousing a particular belief or event, I think: These are people who want a bit of magic in their lives and this is how they express it.
    Christmas as a Christian holiday came about as the church chose to co-opt religious/spiritual holidays of older religions: the Romans with Saturnalia, the Celts with holly, ivy and such.
    As we near the shortest day (of daylight) of the year some people react instinctively to respond to the dark with their own displays of light. I have the mini-led light strands which I’ve used in the garden in the summer and I love the effect of what almost seem like fireflies.

    The older 7 watt bulbs did take a fair amount of electricity but as noted by others, the new mini-lights and leds take so much less. I don’t think the world is going to go to hell in a handbasket just because people decide to put up outside lights this time of year. Those who choose to conserve–whether electricity, water or whatever–that is your personal choice, and as with religious beliefs, please keep your choices to yourself.
    Myself, if I see a householder out in their yard when the lights are on, I’m going to stop and thank them for sharing their enjoyment of this time with me.

  10. kudos, Eric! X’mas lights rock no matter what your religion. forget the nay-sayers!

  11. These post are great. I almost feel like Eastsider puts them up just so Will Cambell can vent. And Barbara and LA Native….and well myself. I think out of anyone though Will is the easiest to bring into a pointless debate. All you have to do is get your facts a little wrong, assume something, pose a question about real estate and/or gentrification, early gays in Silverlake, and overweight people. But Will doest care about fallen trees or the weird tumble weed snowman and neither do I.

    I like lights.

  12. This is such a waste of time! If you want to put up Christmas lights, then put them up. I you don’t then don’t. WTF don’t you people have any thing better to talk about?

  13. That’s the Christmas Spirit everyone, LOL! How does all this matter arguing about Xmas light Decorations, when there are other more important things in the world to worry about… for Santa’s sakes….

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