10 Signs You’re a Flashaholic

Light PaintingExercise moderation in all things, advised ancient Roman playwright Terence. This simple advice is difficult to actually exemplify, as most of us are quite addicted to our treats. From coffee to sugar to energy drinks, it seems nearly everyone is addicted to something.

Even physical objects can become a matter of obsession. Some people collect baseball cards. Others must have the latest handbag or stiletto. A person might even be addicted to LED flashlights and headlamps.

Below, we’ve listed ten clues that your addiction to flashlights has reached noteworthy levels. If these ten warning signs strike true for you, there’s a good chance you’re a flashaholic who spends most of your time fiddling with LED flashlights.

1. You hide flashlights from your spouse. Under the sink? In the junk drawer? Too obvious. You’re so practiced that you have devised methods of hiding LED flashlights in toilet bowls. Still, your spouse can’t keep up – you always have an extra torch (or ten) at the hilt. Visitors to your house are sometimes surprised to find a headlamp in the bathroom linen closet, another hanging underneath the dining room table, and yet a third dangling from your neck.

2. You have more flashlights than you have fingers and toes. Ha! That’s a good one. You passed the “I have more LED flashlights than I can count on both hands and feet” mark while still a wee child of eight or nine.

3. You sometimes forget and wear your headlamp to work.“These things are a godsend, I tell you!” This is one of the most common expressions your partner hears you shout around the house. From personal hygiene to food preparation, you’re convinced that nearly every human activity can be improved with the addition of a headlamp. And so what if you do wear it to work sometimes? At least your boss says you’re bright!

4. Your spouse thinks you’re addicted to flashlight websites. “Why can’t you just be like normal people and look at porn sites?” she whines when she sees you drooling over the latest generation of LED flashlights.

5. Your heart races when you see specs for the newest tactical flashlights. Four different beam colors? An unbreakable LED? Swoon. LED flashlight salesmen call you to get the lowdown on the latest in LED product development.

6. You can list all 7 ANSI flashlight FL1 standards without cheating. In less than thirty seconds. At parties, you challenge people to list the standards in less than a minute while eating saltines. You have spent entire commutes dreaming up mnemonic devices to help remember the ANSI standards (Light Output, Beam Distance, Run Time, Peak Beam Intensity, Impact Resistance, Water Resistance, and Water Submersion Depth Rating are not easy to arrange into a clever acronym.)

7. You calculate your children’s ages in lumens. Even the most casual flashlight lover knows one lumen equals the amount of light emitted by a single birthday candle a foot away from you. You take it a step further, proudly declaring to friends and family that your child just turned four lumens old. On Sundays, you all go out for a flashlight-themed adventure, and family vacations are usually spent driving to the Flashlight Collector’s Convention.

8. A flashlight-shaped silhouette is worn into the front pocket of every pair of pants you own. You consider LED flashlights so central to your existence that your LED flashlight always enters your pocket before your wallet. Your torch is so much a part of your daily existence that you even incorporate it into your sleepwalking sessions.

9. You calculate the distance of road trips according to the number packs of batteries you’ll need for your flashlights and headlamps. Why not just spend the whole trip flashing your torch into oncoming traffic? That’s the real question.

10. You idolize Thomas Edison and Nick Holonyack Jr. The Wizard of Menlo Park is a hero to many Americans, but it takes a real flashaholic to dream of having “the father of the light-emitting diode” over for dinner. You tell friends that you were born in the wrong time – you should have been around to watch Holonyack develop not only the first useful, visible LED but also the first light dimmer, back in his days at GE in the 1960s.

If you find that the warning signs listed above are true for you, it’s clear that you have an addiction to portable LED lighting. Terence’s advice, “Moderation in all things,” seems a little unrealistic in the face of such a strong addiction. Perhaps a spin on this quotation often attributed to Mark Twain would be a more appropriate aphorism for you to live by: “Moderation in all things, including moderation.”

[ Photo by: VFS Digital Design ]

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