I hate to be a Scrooge about the wonderful displays of Christmas lights that brighten our long, dark winters, but in a time when global warming and energy prices are daily news, it seems a little head-in-the-sand to be encouraging people to increase the size and potency of their displays every year. Every town or neighborhood should have one person who spends most of the year planning for their holiday light display. But when every other house is lit up with lights dripping from the eaves of the entire house and garage, brightly-lit yard displays, strands of lights winding around every tree, and more lights along the fence, it gets overwhelming - and expensive in terms on energy use. The new icicle lights don't help, since they make it easy to string dozens of lights where there used to be one or two. So one small way to combat global warming (and lower your power bill) is to refuse to play the "bigger, better" game and be content with a single strand of lights over the front door or along the walk. It is still festive, and it still allows you to celebrate the season, just without excess or a hangover when you open your next power bill.
Of course I figure this out just after I bought some new icicle lights for my deck.