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Date: Sun Jun 10 15:00:30 2001
From: Elric the White Wolf
Subject: The Reuters story about the 100 year bulb

Town Celebrates 100-Year-Old Light Bulb
June 7, 2001 9:38 am EST

LIVERMORE, Calif. (Reuters) - Call it a beacon of hope for a state
mired in an energy crisis.
The California town of Livermore is preparing to celebrate a 100-year-old
light bulb, a four-watt workhorse that has shone more-or-less continuously
since 1901.

"Even though nothing on this Earth is permanent, this is something
that has really hung in there through thick and thin," Lynn Owens,
a retired division chief with the Livermore Fire Department and chairman
of the town's light bulb centennial committee, said Wednesday.

"It's been on through the San Francisco earthquake, the first
man on the moon, the invention of the car ... if that light bulb could
talk, it would be awesome."

Livermore's favorite light bulb, which will be honored Friday with
official proclamations and a celebratory cook-out, was first installed
in a local fire station in 1901, the gift of a local businessman.

The handblown globe, declared the oldest known working light bulb
by the Guinness Book of World Records, blinked out briefly in 1976
when it was moved to a new fire station in this town about 35 miles
(56 km) east of San Francisco.

But it was quickly turned back on at its new location, and has shone
nonstop ever since, Owen said.

Even the rolling blackouts which have swept California in recent months
thanks to the state's energy crisis have not dimmed the bulb, which
is hooked up to emergency generators which power the fire house.

"Blackouts don't have any impact on it at all," Owen said.

It has also become a major tourist draw for Livermore, and fans have
filled some three visitors' books with comments and praise for the
long-shining light.

"Sometimes when people come to look at it I'm sure they just
think: wow, is that all there is?" Owen said.

"But once you start reflecting on this little old dingy light
bulb hanging there, you realize it is still doing the same job it's
been doing for 100 years."

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