Columbia Star

1963        Celebrating 60 Years      2023


It’s not a criticism; It’s an observation



This Christmas was very happy and successful, mainly because we received zero candles— which have been on my mind lately. In truth, we haven’t received candles as gifts in ages, for several reasons. First of all, we no longer exchange gifts with friends. Our Christmas parties are limited, and there are no more work related soirees to attend.

For most adults, gift giving is ridiculous. No one really knows what their friends actually like, and most of us have matured enough to go buy any personal item we need or any quirky thing we desire. No one’s waiting till Christmas, hoping for the perfect gift from a friend who knows them intimately. Besides I have enough Bama football t-shirts, Turvis Tumblers, and football stadium dog beds to last me for life.

Most of us do have a “go to” gift our friends abuse regularly—shot glasses, sports memorabilia, golf stuff. And then there are candles. I get it. They are easy, versatile, and fit every body shape. They smell nice and you can set them on fire.

At some point we addressed the ever growing stash of unopened candles in the closet. First, we began regifting this popular item. If people were giving them to us, then most people we knew would appreciate them. And they weren’t going to waste—we hoped.

Then one New Year’s Day we had an epiphany. This wasn’t working. Because we could no longer remember where each one came from, regifting became possibly embarrassing. Our initial cache was so large we would never outlive our stockpile. So they sit, alone and forgotten, in a dark, seldom opened closet, keeping company with formerly fashionable shoulder pads, knee high patent leather boots, and Members Only jackets.

Then last week I read about a candle recall. Brace yourself, but Good Matters Three Wick Candles are a fire danger. It seems these candles not only light the room with a soft glow and smell nice, but they can also heat up enough to break the container and set the house on fire.

The candles affected come in a 21 oz. glass tumbler with a wooden lid that is embossed with the words “Good Matters” on top. The product comes black, blue, white, yellow, and pink and in the scents of Leather+Oud, Citrus+Basil, Cypress+Fig, Snowfall, Wild Pine, Hope, Love, and Peace. I couldn’t find any matching that description in our collection. I was especially worried about the Love and Peace scented ones. Most of our friends came of age during the ’60s.

I stopped worrying when it dawned on me that, unlike Polonus Vorstius, candles can’t combust spontaneously, so I went back to sleep. That night I dreamed that Super 8 Motels had released a scented candle collection for the holidays. The following morning I found out my dream had come true.

Super 8 is actually offering eight candle sets meant to mimic road trip adventure, for $19.74— commemorating the year Super 8’s first hotel opened. Scents include windows down on the open road, glorious gasoline, crisp clean linen, and cherry slushie.

I may have to donate a few leisure suits to make room.

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