Time for a Change?

Photo Credit to cottonbro on Pexels

I’m a big fan of most traditions. Some of my favorite memories of Halloween involve dressing up and carving pumpkins. I worked with a fun bunch of people, and each year we looked forward to coming up with a creative idea for the staff. One year we decided to be school supplies. I painted a cardboard box, adding swirly stencil designs, and went as a tissue container. I cut a slit in the box and taped a box of Kleenex inside. The box fit over the top half of my body. My class had a good time pretending to need tissue for their pretend sneezes and coughs. (The only photo I can find is of my mom wearing my costume—the tissue on the head must have been her touch.)

Mom and Dad on Halloween

I also have fond memories of St. Patrick’s Day traditions at school when I taught 2nd and 3rd grades. Kids asked if they could build Leprechaun traps in the hopes of somehow snaring one of the little fellows. Teachers seize on moments like these and run with them. Their “traps” involved a certain degree of creativity, and I’d tie it into a journal assignment so that the kids wrote about their experiences. They used their imaginations to create contraptions with whatever supplies they could find in our classroom. They “set” their traps overnight at the school. (Not sure how something made of construction paper would catch anything, but that wasn’t the point.) Most kids at that age still want to believe it’s possible.

One year I decided to have a little fun with my students. The kids came into the classroom on St. Patrick’s Day, finding Lucky the Leprechaun’s “footprints” on and near their traps. He had left some notes with clues and sent the kids on a scavenger hunt around the classroom. Each message gave instructions about the next clue. Lucky told the kids they might find a treasure if they followed each direction correctly. Sure enough, they eventually found some gold chocolate coins that Lucky said they could have at the end of the school day. It was harmless fun, something former students recall about being in my class.

Photo Credit to Rodnae Productions on Pexels

Every holiday seems to have its own set of traditions. As a traditionalist, I look forward to many of these things. I love living in a country where we have the freedom to choose whether we want to take part. People should do whatever feels right to them if the activities they pick follow the law and don’t interfere with others’ rights to peacefulness and privacy.

I would like to see one holiday custom revamped—the 4th of July (Independence Day in America). I’m all for patriotism and having pride in one’s country. The problem isn’t about celebrating the birth of a nation; it’s the notion that some people feel like they can shoot off fireworks (legal and Illegal) whenever they feel like it. Today is July 11th, and fireworks have been going on for up to two weeks. I’m not against people having fun, but where is that line in the sand where one person’s pleasure becomes another person’s nightmare?

I’m not suggesting a ban on fireworks, but just because we’ve always done something a certain way is not a reason to keep doing it. I generally think less government is better, but I’d opt for some commonsense restrictions in this case. I can think of at least four reasons to limit the use of fireworks:

  1. Illegal fireworks— Why are they banned? They’re noisy, have the potential to do bodily harm, and are a fire hazard. We’ve been in the middle of a drought in California for five of the last six years in California. Many citizens have lost their homes to fires. Several people in residential areas shoot off these mortar-type fireworks at any hour, including in the middle of the night.
  2. PTSD— (Post-traumatic stress disorder) Google defines PTSD as a mental health condition triggered by a terrifying event—either experiencing it or witnessing it. Symptoms may include flashbacks, nightmares, severe anxiety, and uncontrollable thoughts about the event. If we genuinely care about people, why would we put our friends and neighbors through something that causes them great angst? Many people claim to support our soldiers yet see no problem with setting off explosives that potentially may trigger a PTSD episode.
  3. Our pets— As a lifelong dog owner, I dread the 4th of July. Most animals have far more sensitive hearing than humans, and fireworks may cause them great stress. Each year many pets go missing around this time of year. Even when we took as many precautions as possible, we still encountered problems. This year we gave our dog tranquilizers, got him a thunder shirt (an article of clothing designed to swaddle the animal like a baby), bought some new chew toys, and kept her inside all night. As soon as the heavy fireworks began, she became a nervous mess, pacing and hyperventilating. We tried everything we could think of to comfort her. At one point, we took her into the bathroom and turned the fan on to drown out the noise. She dislikes getting a bath, but she was so beside herself with worry that she climbed into the bathtub. Thankfully, the fan drowned out some of the noise, and she fell asleep in the tub.
  4. Law enforcement— The police face an overabundance of crimes already. Why add more stress and responsibility to an already challenging job? In our city, the police put out bulletins telling citizens not to call them regarding fireworks. I know of one situation in our neighborhood where two neighbors got into a confrontation when one continued to set off illegal fireworks. After several calls, the police showed up just as things were escalating. Who knows what might have happened if they arrived two minutes later?
Lulu, our dog, on the 4th of July during fireworks. Does that face look happy?

People should be able to have fun; I’m not suggesting we ban fireworks. On the other hand, when someone’s “fun” creates problems for others, I think we need to look at making changes. Here are some possibilities to consider:

  1. Impose fines for those who use illegal fireworks. Taking part in community service could be an alternative.
  2. Limit the number of days for legal fireworks. Most years, the fireworks go on for days before and after the 4th of July.
  3. Ban or limit legal fireworks in residential areas. People who want to shoot off fireworks can do so in agreed-upon non-residential spots.

I don’t claim to have all the answers, but some changes need to happen. I think there must be some middle ground. What do you think?

92 thoughts on “Time for a Change?

  1. Our city and county have a fireworks ban, yet people shoot them off. I am so with you on the idea of controlling this nonsense. There is no reason to call the police for illegal fireworks. They simply don’t show up. One thing you can do in addition for Lulu is put on some soothing music which also helps.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. petespringerauthor July 11, 2022 — 6:32 pm

      Yep, we talked about that but never tried it. I’ll keep that in mind for next year and the next few nights while the nightly fireworks show continues.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. There is a dog music channel on Spotify.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Your parents photo is hilarious, but very quickly I realized that this post is not about fun and games. Lulu’s expression said it all…when we still had horses these holidays that were celebrated with fireworks were a nightmare because it set the horses running like crazy. We were always afraid that they will jump the fences in fear. We tried to bring them in before there were any fireworks, but as you say, they are unpredictable. I had a scare a couple of weeks ago driving to Denver. We had to make a detour and drove through a seedy part of a Michigan town when there was an explosion right next to us and the van shook really badly. It felt as if someone launched a missile at us. It turned out that a couple of idiots were setting off fireworks right next to the road and we happened to hit a pothole at the very minute that this thing exploded. Why would you even think that it’s okay to set off fireworks right by the road? Okay, I am done ranting 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    1. petespringerauthor July 11, 2022 — 6:38 pm

      Most people are responsible, but there are always a few loose cannons (no pun intended) with horrible decision-making. Our neighbors have since moved, but one night they had a bonfire with the wind blowing close to 50 mph. I remind myself that my judgment wasn’t always great when I was a teenager, but most of the time, these incidents with illegal fireworks involve adults.

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  3. Good ideas

    Liked by 1 person

    1. petespringerauthor July 11, 2022 — 6:39 pm

      Thanks for reading, Norma.

      Like

  4. When I lived in Virginia, most fireworks were illegal for the general public. You needed to be a certified pyrotechnition with a permit to put on a fireworks show. I remember the last fireworks show my husband and I attended there, we had to wait a good hour after the show was due to start because the wind shifted, and the person in charge didn’t want to risk a fire.

    When my neighbors started shooting off the fireworks this year, my first thought was that I hoped none of the people living within earshot were veterans with PTSD. And we had our terrified dog to deal with.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. petespringerauthor July 11, 2022 — 6:42 pm

      This year has been better for us than the last two, but we go through this struggle with our dog(s) every year. She typically sleeps outside in a pen connected to our third garage, but I don’t put her out until I’m relatively sure the fireworks are finished for the night.

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  5. I totally agree with you, Pete. I love fireworks but there should be a limit. You’ve made some valid points.

    Much of Texas is in a drought and under an outdoor burn ban (including fireworks). We didn’t have a problem, but some folks a couple of miles from us said people were still shooting them several days after July 4.

    Then there was the guy somewhere in Texas who lit a mortar type firework from his head. We won’t have to worry about him anymore…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. petespringerauthor July 11, 2022 — 6:46 pm

      I loved them as a kid, but I pretty much just tolerate them now. Maybe I’ve become a crotchety old man. 🤣 I enjoy the other holidays. When people shoot fireworks at the start of a new year, that only seems to last for a short time.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. There are laws against illegal fireworks so why don’t those who can enforce them? That’s probably the first step–enforce laws on the books. Then, if there aren’t enough laws, get new ones passed (that will be enforced). I can see why hermits go off to live by themselves.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. petespringerauthor July 11, 2022 — 6:49 pm

      Right. I know there are laws on the books, but it seems the police are understaffed and unable to handle the large volume of calls they get. When people are hit in the pocketbook, they usually change their behavior.

      I’m guessing fireworks are not big with hermits. 🤣

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I apologize, Pete. When I re-read my comment, I must have been annoyed by something! I was more than a tad aggressive there. Of course you know about laws. Didn’t mean to seem to jump on you. I think I met more that we should enforce them (but too often we don’t).

        Maybe I should be a hermit!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. petespringerauthor July 12, 2022 — 8:03 am

        Nothing to apologize for, Jacqui. Have a good day.😊

        Liked by 1 person

  7. Your suggestions are sensible, Pete. Limiting but not banning. Sadly, that doesn’t mean they’ll be adopted or enforced.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. petespringerauthor July 11, 2022 — 6:54 pm

      You’re probably right, but I can’t let another year pass without trying to do something. It would be helpful to have people who have lost a finger or hand go on television to share their stories to reinforce the dangers of illegal fireworks.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Hi Pete, I loved the picture of your mom and dad dressed up. They look so cute!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. petespringerauthor July 11, 2022 — 6:55 pm

      They were quite a pair, always willing to have fun. I remember helping them out with costumes more than once.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. I’m really with you on this Pete. unfortunately some people see July as fireworks month, not day and it is annoying and scary to most pets and some people. I recently saw a clip of a city’s fireworks that were beautiful but silent. ps. I love the costumes and traditions of the holidays just like you, and love the pic of your parents

    Liked by 1 person

    1. petespringerauthor July 11, 2022 — 7:01 pm

      It seems to be extending longer and longer. The fact that so many have lost their homes to wildfires in the past few years should inhibit humans, but I guess they haven’t made that connection.

      Whenever we had dress-up days at school, I was always on board. I look at some of the pictures from previous events and realize that teachers have no shame. One photo is me wearing my underwear over my pants on Backwards Day. 😜

      Liked by 1 person

      1. hopefully the laws will put some limits on people if they can’t come to that themselves. as for costumes, I was just looking through teaching pics earlier today and I seem to have quite a run of them…) love the backwards day one you did!

        Liked by 1 person

  10. Fireworks are illegal in our city. But there was a smart pain in the neck neighbor who bought a big truckload of fireworks and started shooting a few at a time long before the 4th. It was random, so even my husband couldn’t pinpoint where it came from. Then the day of the 4th, he had a big one almost like Disneyland fireworks. The police don’t care. With the recent crimes, the police only put the energy into some major issues.
    I read one blog about that, she said she just took her dog on a vacation and they both were happy.
    I love your tissue box costume on your mom. Her idea of putting a tissue on her head is cute.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. petespringerauthor July 11, 2022 — 10:04 pm

      I don’t know if the police don’t care as much as they’ve got more significant problems to deal with. Laws/regulations only work if enforced. On the other hand, I can imagine the outcry if something serious happens because the minor problems were ignored. Going on vacation isn’t a bad idea, but it would have to be away from civilization.

      I smile at that picture of my parents. It reminds me that they liked to have fun together.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You got all the points covered, Pete! In a way, it depends on where you live, the kind of government of your city, county, and state. My husband said in LA, the council members have autonomy in different areas. It’s difficult to implement certain things if other council members don’t want to give up their control. Not a good thing.

        Liked by 1 person

  11. I’m rather glad we don’t have a day celebrating our nationhood, because patriotism can so easily slip into nationalism, with all the slanty-eyed morons finding an excuse to celebrate the worst features of little Englander exceptionalism. St George’s day, Englands patron saint’s day, passes unmarked and the nearest we get to celebrating being English is Bonfire night when we celebrate the failure to blow up Parliament which is essentially a bit of anti Catholic crowing – not the most meritorious of celebrations. That does involve fireworks, but so do New Year, Diwali, Eid and several others. They don’t tend to last for a week. Happily Dog doesn’t react to fireworks.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. petespringerauthor July 12, 2022 — 8:10 am

      Great point about how the lines between patriotism and nationalism get blurred. It can easily slip into distrust of anyone who looks different than us. I find the whole distrust of your neighbor because they’re different quite offensive. I was just reading about a recent anti-Semitism incident in our community that makes me sad.

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      1. Yes those sort of things grind your gears, don’t they.

        Liked by 1 person

  12. You express some very valid issues and concerns. But the solution seems to be much less clear. Then there are situations like our local baseball team, who often has fireworks at the stadium after a game regardless of the date or time of year. I wonder if technology will offer some option in the future.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. petespringerauthor July 12, 2022 — 8:14 am

      Very true, Brad. Pyrotechnics seem to be everywhere. It gets to be so commonplace that it slips in other places like ballgames and concerts.

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Our big event here is 5th November, Guy Fawkes Night. I’d prefer it if fireworks were only allowed at official events but we get idiots letting them off for weeks before and after, then again for New Year, birthdays etc. When I was a kid we loved having them in our garden, but always felt bad coming back indoors to our terrified dog. If your suggestions were adopted and enforced things might be better.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. petespringerauthor July 12, 2022 — 8:17 am

      The volume and intensity of the fireworks seem to be getting louder. It certainly can’t be because my hearing is improving. I look at my dog shaking and panting and it’s heartbreaking.

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      1. And over there I guess if you complain to the people doing it they’ll just tell you you’re infringing their rights under the constitution and carry on as before. It must be awful for your poor dog.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. petespringerauthor July 12, 2022 — 8:32 am

        The hypocrisy comes from those who seem to cherish the Constitution only if it serves their purpose.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. That seems to be a growing theme for those who don’t want to abide by any commonly held view of what constitutes civilised behaviour.

        Liked by 1 person

  14. What a kick to be one of your students. My Aunt Ruthie was of your ilk, her classroom a laboratory for fun with learning. I love the photo of your Mom inside the Kleenex box. Ha!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. petespringerauthor July 12, 2022 — 8:22 am

      I love that phrase—a laboratory for fun with learning. There are times for fun and seriousness in a classroom. If the teacher sets a good example, the kids understand I used to walk into an IEP meeting drenched in sweat because PE was our last activity of the day. I often took part in whatever game/skill we were learning.

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  15. Love the leprechaun traps! Every year, my grandkids and I make traps and they are often really creative with much thought put into them. Once in a while, even when they don’t catch one, an Irish coin or two might get dropped in the shamrock trail…

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    1. petespringerauthor July 12, 2022 — 8:23 am

      That’s great, Dorothy. Our son is getting married next June, and I hope to have a lot of fun with grandchildren.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. The last time, they even put little signs on the side of the trap – nice cozy warm Irish house! Comfy bed!
        It still didn’t work.

        Liked by 1 person

  16. Well, first, I would like to say that I sure would have loved being in your classroom Pete with such creativity flowing through it! Ideas and lessons really stick when presented in unique ways. We also have fireworks from maybe the 1st through the 6th, but they don’t go all night. And I am truly surprised that the scofflaws would put their state at risk with all the fire concerns. It’s incredibly selfish. And Lulu! Oh my gosh, that is the most forlorn look I have ever seen. I feel so sorry for her. ♥

    Liked by 1 person

    1. petespringerauthor July 12, 2022 — 5:07 pm

      Having fun with my students matched my personality. Education is serious business, but it doesn’t mean we can’t have fun. Having kids excited to come to school takes care of many problems.

      It is incredibly shortsighted on the part of people not to think about others, especially since all these drought years have had a direct correlation to the wildfires.

      Lulu doesn’t like any loud noises and is a pretty sensitive dog. She is generally happy, so that look of fear breaks my heart.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m sure Lulu’s a sweetheart, I bet she was happy to see you after your big trip east! 🙂

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      2. petespringerauthor July 13, 2022 — 12:59 pm

        She’s a funny dog. Not very smart, but such a loving sweetheart. I’m not sure she even realized I was gone. 🤣 We had to put our other dog, Jake, down near the start of the pandemic. He was more mischievous than Lulu but incredibly smart and full of personality. My wife still gets misty if I bring up his name.

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  17. Your poor Lulu! She looks so scared and miserable! I have to be honest, before I became a parent I never minded too much about this but since Charlotte’s birth, I dread every holiday that call for fireworks. Mainly due to the noise disturbance. Charlotte’s bedtime has always been early, anywhere from 6:30pm when she was sleep trained to now an 8:30pm (absolutely latest). That’s still quite early for summer months- the sky is still light out. So, I definitely dread the neighbourhood kids pulling out the fireworks.

    I agree with your suggestions whole-heartedly! Fine illegal fireworks (there was a story recently about a gentleman who lost his life because one exploded in his face), define firework-designated areas (far away from residential areas and general public), and limit it then for certain times of the year… and that’s it. I don’t see why there should ever be any grey area…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. petespringerauthor July 12, 2022 — 5:12 pm

      Being a parent or pet owner changes one’s perspective. We rarely get thunderstorms in California, but once we had one at school. I guarantee it was the first time some of my students had ever experienced that. As often as I reassured them that they were safe inside, a few kids wore Lulu’s expression and were genuinely frightened.

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  18. Amen, Pete! Thank you for posting this!!

    We spent June and the beginning of July on our friends’ property in St. Helens, Oregon. The fireworks started a week before the 4th and Maya hates them! She would not do her business anymore after the first noises, hid behind our pillows on the bed, and shook and shivered the entire night. Many nights in a row!

    On the big day, it was the worst. Usually, we avoid areas where fireworks will be prevalent but we were in a situation where we couldn’t really move our camper. We put the fan on and played loud music. We thought we’d be done with this stress and irresponsible, obstructing noise after the fourth, but no.

    People in the neighborhood kept shooting them off (and the kind that isn’t even legal in Oregon) with a nervous dog as a result. By then, we got her to pee before dark, just in case. We were actually so annoyed by it that we left for the last few days, into the woods of southern Washington. We will leave the national forest tomorrow and I sure hope the fireworks are done by then as this has been insane and irresponsible.

    To make matters worse, a house in the neighborhood (which had a sign out front “Think about your neighbors and their pets – not everyone loves fireworks”, ironically) was hit by fireworks and the top floor burned down!!

    This is also when we realized that Massachusetts is the only state in the entire country where all fireworks by private parties are illegal. No wonder our previous summers had been much better regarding Maya’s behavior!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. petespringerauthor July 12, 2022 — 5:22 pm

      So sorry you had to go through this with Maya, Liesbet. This isn’t a new problem, and I hear many people complaining about it every year. Unfortunately, nothing has changed. Some issues are tough to figure out, but this shouldn’t be one of them.

      I have a friend whose daughter’s house burned down (not related to fireworks but wildfires) two years ago. Part of this relates to the Covid era, but they are still waiting to get into their new home. Can you imagine if you had to live with someone else for two years? Having your house burn down due to something preventable (as in the example you gave) has to be hard to swallow.

      Liked by 1 person

  19. Yes we have this discussion every November with Guy Fawkes night, people are more worried about their dogs than people who may have PTSD! For anyone who has been in a war situation it must be awful. I can’t imagine our Ukrainian refugees will want to hear fireworks. Of course people do love big organised firework displays and my son and daughter-in-law the pyrotechnics expert work on such events. At least they last for a short period of time and are safe.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. petespringerauthor July 12, 2022 — 5:23 pm

      If there is a designated time to start and stop, it’s easier to process. The random blast at 2:00 in the morning is upsetting.

      Liked by 1 person

  20. I totally relate. Here in Malaysia, we have fireworks for Chinese New Year, and that’s fine and all, but on the eighth day, the fireworks carry on all the will past 3 a.m., and constantly too. As a dog owner, I pity my baby girl because the barrage just doesn’t stop. I’m half Chinese too, and so it’s not coming from a place of telling others what to do. And of course, people with leftover fireworks will keep firing them up through the entire fifteen days of celebrations. Misophonia is a thing, and I probably have it, lol.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. petespringerauthor July 13, 2022 — 8:07 am

      I’ll be honest—I wasn’t familiar with misophonia though I guessed right simply from the prefix and base word. I’ve learned over time 🤣 not to pick at my fingernails or toenails around my wife (a fantastic spouse) as that sound gets on her nerves.

      It is interesting to hear from other people who say their animals are unaffected by fireworks. I guess that shouldn’t be all that surprising since the same is true for people.

      Like

  21. We have the same problem in the UK with fireworks often going off before and after Bonfire Night on 5th November. A friend of mine gives her dog tranquilisers on that day and keeps him indoors. I’ve heard of thatched rooves catching fire too, due to fireworks.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. petespringerauthor July 13, 2022 — 8:09 am

      We do what we can to help our fur babies, but sometimes it doesn’t feel like it’s enough.

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  22. I’ve always considered myself a ‘killjoy’ because I’ve never been a fan of fireworks, nor understand why others get such a ‘kick’ out of them. When I was a child, my parents took me to our small town’s 4th of July parade (I LOVED it) and then fireworks around a lake at night. I held my ears and closed my eyes most of the time, and I still do (although I haven’t gone to fireworks for several years). They remind me of war, and that some would do anything to AVOID the noise and bangs and fire light. They’re just scary, and our poor dog would shake for hours. So, I’m with you all the way on this, Pete.

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    1. petespringerauthor July 13, 2022 — 8:13 am

      They can be pleasant to look at from a distance, but I feel the same way you do about the illegal ones that sound similar to bombs. Two years ago, when people were blowing off steam because fireworks shows weren’t happening during Covid, it felt like a war zone around us for about four hours straight. My nerves were frayed by the end of the night.

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  23. You have great traditions for holidays, Pete. I agree that fireworks are way overused. My suggestion for a new 4th tradition is people, organizations, radio & TV should spend time learning about the institutions and principles that are the foundation of our country and democracy.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. petespringerauthor July 13, 2022 — 8:16 am

      Great idea, John. It seems that so many holidays have become commercialized and are opportunities for companies to simply generate money. The original intent of the celebration gets lost.

      Liked by 1 person

  24. Hi Pete, I think this is another example of the rights of the minorities impacting on the rights of the majority and it is wrong. People shouldn’t be able to do whatever they like and behave how they like, when it impacts on others in a negative way. This is the not wearing of masks and not being vaccinated issue in a microcosm. Well, that is my opinion in any event.

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    1. petespringerauthor July 13, 2022 — 10:45 am

      I think the choice of not getting vaccinated, unless there is some medical reason to avoid it, is an apt comparison, Robbie. People should be able to live their lives as they see fit as long as those choices don’t infringe upon the rights of others. That’s why there are laws about drinking and driving. Another example would be someone who goes away for the weekend and leaves their pet outside in their fenced yard the entire time (I assume with food and water). We had to endure this neighbor’s dog’s incessant barking for nearly two days straight, day and night.

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      1. HI Pete, that is awful, so cruel for the pets. This is the problem though, the rights of the few seem to be more important than the rights of many.

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  25. I agree, Pete. There were even people shooting fireworks at other people for hours this year! I like the new concept of drones for a holiday display, though even then there’s a possibility of disaster.

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    1. petespringerauthor July 13, 2022 — 12:41 pm

      I admit I did my share of foolish things when I was a kid, but we all need to grow up at some point. I’m mystified by adults doing crazy things in front of their children and the example they’re setting.

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    1. petespringerauthor July 13, 2022 — 12:42 pm

      Thanks, John. Got your email yesterday and will try to respond in the next day. I’m heading out of town on Friday.

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  26. So much of this comes down to common sense and respect for others, Pete. Oregon had a huge fire a couple of years ago when a couple of teens were shooting off fireworks. 48,000 Acres burned over the two months required to put out the fire, closing highways and destroying homes. And your poor pup in the bathtub. 😦 We have friends who take their dogs out of town on the night of the town’s celebration rather than spend the 4th worrying about their pets. It’s a good time to book a quiet night in the mountains.

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    1. petespringerauthor July 14, 2022 — 7:19 am

      I think we’ll consider taking Lulu somewhere next 4th, but that won’t solve the problem of these random blasts that go on for weeks. I understand the allure of the pretty lights, but it boggles my mind why loud noises attract anyone. I hope the fire season is short this year, but that’s unlikely.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m lucky to live out in the woods where we can’t hear any fireworks. But fire is always a concern.

        Liked by 1 person

  27. Even when communities make fireworks illegal or restricted, the regulations do not seem to get enforced.

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    1. petespringerauthor July 14, 2022 — 10:42 am

      I think this falls into the category of we’ve got more important things to worry about. I can already hear the outcry if someone gets hurt associated with the inaction of the police. I usually empathize with them because so many people do ignorant things.

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  28. We have laws here, but they are not adhered to. Your suggestions are full of common sense, Pete. Poor, Lulu. ❤

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    1. petespringerauthor July 15, 2022 — 3:06 pm

      One has to question the purpose of laws if they’re not enforced. Do people only have to stop for red lights if they feel like it? Always great to hear from you, Jane. Hope you and Tim are doing well.

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      1. We are doing well, thanks Pete. We hope you and Debbie are doing well? ❤

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      2. petespringerauthor July 18, 2022 — 8:46 am

        I’m so lucky to be married to such a wonderful woman. Coming up on 36 years in early August.

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      3. Happy Anniversary to you both for early August, Pete and Debbie. Many congratulations. Xx ❤

        Liked by 1 person

  29. You make some very good points, Pete. As a dog lover who had dogs for decades, fireworks are always an issue. Looking a Lulu’s face says it all. Been there, done that, and my heart aches because they are helpless. If fireworks were only on the 4th, that might help. Groton had their fireworks on the 11th, which I don’t understand. I’m with you all the way on this one.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. petespringerauthor July 15, 2022 — 3:13 pm

      I know I’d be okay with it once a year on the 4th. The problem is this seems to go on endlessly until people eventually run out of their fireworks. We used to have these wooden accordion-style gates that they use for children. After the dogs broke the third one, we installed a secure metal gate. While having to spend the time and money was a bit annoying, the main thing is I don’t want pets to have to suffer through this unnecessarily. Lulu’s frightened expression was heartbreaking. It feels like she’s saying, “Please do something, Dad. I can’t take it.” 😢

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Exactly! Once a year, and that’s it. Our pets are suffering needlessly. Please give Lulu a giant hug for me. ❤️

        Liked by 1 person

  30. I agree with you about monitoring the fire work displays. I read somewhere they can do full laser shows now of fireworks. That could be the way to go. No scary noises, and no burning up money. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. petespringerauthor July 18, 2022 — 6:07 pm

      That would be fine with me, Debby. I think most people are attracted to the visual element of fireworks, but I’m sure a decent percentage of people are impressed with things exploding. I’m just not one of them. Noisier isn’t always better.

      Like

      1. Silent fireworks? Heavenly… x

        Liked by 1 person

  31. I totally agree with your thoughts on fireworks, Pete – they’re very dangerous, and have been banned here for quite a few years. You can only see them at approved fireworks displays. A few people still manage to get hold of them, though. Toni x

    Liked by 1 person

    1. petespringerauthor July 19, 2022 — 8:39 am

      I think you’d probably be stunned if you ever visited America around that time of year. Though not happening every night now, they’re still going off occasionally. My wife, dog, and I look at each other and think the same thing. “Another one?” Sigh.

      Liked by 1 person

  32. I agree 100% about the use of fireworks, and your suggestions all seem reasonable. St. Patrick’s day has always been one of my favorite holidays, particularly the green beer part 🤓

    Liked by 1 person

    1. petespringerauthor July 21, 2022 — 8:35 pm

      We’re equal opportunity beer drinkers. It’s our duty to sample all the different colors.

      Liked by 1 person

  33. Your parents must have been absolutely awesome! I especially loved the picture of your mother in the tissue box. I enjoy the holiday decorations of others because I’m horrible at it, One more thing-poor Lulu!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. petespringerauthor July 26, 2022 — 6:40 pm

      Lulu sleeps in our third garage at night. For days afterward, she did not want to go out. Her expression says, “Why are you making me do this? I thought I could trust you.” (I may exaggerate a bit as that’s a lot to read from a dog’s expression.)

      My parents were great people and liked to have fun. After I became a teacher, the big ham in me came out.😁

      Like

      1. I don’t think it’s an exaggeration about what you thought Lulu was trying to communicate with her sweet little doggie eyes. She was very effective transmitting her separation anxiety and her desire for her human to hold her. I felt it over the internet! And, kudos to your parents for raising a passionate teacher who knows how to be a kid and have fun.

        Liked by 1 person

  34. I love what you did with the leprechaun footprints and gold coins, Pete. Children love that sort of thing and get really caught up in the imagination and creativity of the situation and projects.
    I’m sorry about the lengths you had to go to for Lulu on July 4th and she was still distressed. It must be heartbreaking for you when you can do nothing about it. I think you’ve made some good suggestions for restricting fireworks and agree with you about having fun is okay, but don’t impact negatively on others’ enjoyment too.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. petespringerauthor July 29, 2022 — 7:47 am

      The fireworks haven’t been as bad this year as other years, though we still have occasional ones going off in our neighborhood, even though it’s almost August.

      Having fun with my students was one of the stings I loved about being a teacher. Imagine that—having fun at school. 🤣 School is about learning new skills, but why not do that in a fun way? You always do an excellent job of that in your lessons, Norah.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I agree with you about the fun, Pete. We have to put as much fun into life as possible. School should be a place where both teachers and students want to be. If teachers don’t want to be there, you can’t expect it to be a happy place for students. I know we agree on that! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

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