New Year’s Ball is Green…and Blue, and Red, and Yellow, and Rainbow Surprise

“New Year’s Resolution: To tolerate fools more gladly, provided this does not encourage them to take up more of my time.” ~James Agate

2007-2008 Times Square New Year’s Ball

The New New Year’s Eve ball in Times Square, another Waterford Crystal piece of art, was outfitted with tons of little changeable LED lights. Super-bright, colorful, energy efficient ones by Philips. Another step toward a greener planet. Yes, a huge, completely unnecessary decoration to celebrate an arbitrary numbering system is now more energy efficient.

I’m just joking. I like The Ball. It’s fancy.

Point of fact, they’ve been dropping The Ball in Times Square for 100 years. Well, actually, they took two years off during WWII when patriotic people across our fine nation saved electricity for the betterment of the country. I wonder if people could be convinced again to save energy for the betterment of the country? Apparently it’ll take more than a war.

While I’m on the subject, I just heard from Joe Biden that the war in Iraq has produced more amputees than any war since the Civil War and more traumatic head injuries since WWII. And with the military healthcare problems and the US healthcare problems … oh, what am I talking about? They’ll be fine.

Back to The Ball. Apparently, in the early days, the spectators would have a moment of silence at the stroke of midnight then they’d sing or kiss or cheer. I’m not sure. I got stuck at the “silence” part. Silence in Times Square at midnight on New Years eve? That sounds as crazy as some of my kooky anti-war / energy saving ideas.

I really do appreciate the green features of The New Ball. Turns out, upgrading The Ball is as much of a tradition as unpopular wars. (I’m sorry, I can’t help it.) The first ball was iron and wood and weighed 700lbs. In subsequent years they tried various things to make it lighter, but it wasn’t until 1955 when they managed to slim it down to 150lbs by using aluminum. People were really in love with aluminum in the 50s. Who could blame them, what with its applications for TV dinners and all?

Old New Year’s Eve ball

I’m establishing that The Ball has reflected the times in both material and design. Consider the commercialized 80s when they turned it into an apple to honor the “I Love New York” campaign. Ah, the shameless 80s. Nothing went without the bedazzler and a commercial tie-in. At least they didn’t turn it into a New Coke can.

In 2000 Waterford classed up the place with this fancy number, The Ball equivalent of formal wear:

The Millennium New Year’s Eve Ball

And now, here’s another shot of The 2007-2008 Ball:

The 2007-2008 New Year’s Eve Ball - or Roy G. Biv?

Yikes. Should we be worried? I mean, on one hand, the energy efficiency is a small victory. On the other hand, the ball was so bright, it could have doubled as a beacon to another world. And the colorful light show? Well, I guess if any other worlds saw it, at least they now know we’re ready to party techno-style.

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16 Comments

  1. Christy said,

    January 4, 2008 at 3:28 pm

    I want to eat that ball. It’s so tacky. It appeals to something dark inside me. This is the first I’ve set eyes on it and I love it. To answer your question though – if I was the worrying kind – I’d think that yes – we should all be very worried for many reasons.

  2. julieluongo said,

    January 4, 2008 at 7:28 pm

    I want to put the millennium one on my head and wear it to the fancy-dress Helmut Ball.

  3. Oprah Boy said,

    January 4, 2008 at 9:01 pm

    I’m amazed anyone thinks about this stuff.

  4. julieluongo said,

    January 4, 2008 at 9:06 pm

    I am amazing.

  5. michael said,

    January 5, 2008 at 4:42 pm

    It’s geometricalious. Triangles, trapezoids, pentagons, hexagons… those are some sexy angles.

  6. julieluongo said,

    January 5, 2008 at 6:02 pm

    The ruby pyramids are the sexiest.

  7. Jim said,

    January 7, 2008 at 2:25 pm

    I always thought they should make the ball out of milk chocolate and pass it out to the crowd afterwards.

    Maybe They shold let the folks over at Albert’s make one from Ice Cubes… Mmmmm.

  8. julieluongo said,

    January 7, 2008 at 11:04 pm

    I like it…although, those ice cubes say they’re “iced chocolate flavor.” What does that mean? Is there so little chocolate that they have to call it chocolate flavor? Actually, that might hold up well as a NYE Ball. How about a NYE pinata!

  9. sopmax12 said,

    January 11, 2008 at 7:50 pm

    for some reason I thought they dropped an apple. like a lit up red ball. maybe i got confused with the comment “they are dropping a ball in the big apple”

    hmm kind of disappointing. and apple would have been better. balls are dumb. I am suprised they dont drop a penis too.

  10. sopmax12 said,

    January 11, 2008 at 7:53 pm

    sorry i just re-read. there was once an apple. I did not dream that up.

    newpost drops a hard hat and harrisburg drops a strawberry.

    it is what it is. this blog site causes my computer so much anger that I seldom visit. which how it is that i missed part of the post. it takes FOREVER to come up.

    anyway. very enjoyable history bits.

  11. julieluongo said,

    January 11, 2008 at 10:45 pm

    A hard hat! Awesome. In Falmouth (PA) they drop a goat (it’s stuffed).

  12. sopmax12 said,

    January 12, 2008 at 12:04 am

    I should clarify. it is a piece of plywood cut in the shape of a hard hat, painted yellow, and then some sort of lights going around the perimeter..and it should also be mentioned that they use a rope and puly system to pull this off. naturally there are some tense moments surrounding the event.

  13. julieluongo said,

    January 12, 2008 at 2:19 am

    That sounds so junky and ridiculous, I’m filled with envy thinking about it.

  14. sopmax12 said,

    January 13, 2008 at 1:45 pm

    Julie, it is stunning in so many horrible ways that I will have to figure a way to film it next year. for proof, you know.

  15. Oprah Boy said,

    January 13, 2008 at 4:15 pm

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_objects_dropped_on_New_Year's_Eve

    apparently PA has a thing for dropping things

  16. sopmax12 said,

    January 13, 2008 at 10:21 pm

    Well I for one am known for dropping trow, dropping the f bomb, and dropping mean comments to the people I hate. Oh, yeah and i have also dropped, in general, my expectations on just about everything.

    But i am guessing you mean pa residents like to “personalize” their news years event. Yeah, well on new years I like to drop it like its hot. Its hard for me to get back up after a spectacle like that but im a trooper.


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