I was sitting here earlier this evening, facing a glass door that looks out toward a hillside that Holly tells me may be Palos Verdes (or somewhere near there), and listening to gusts of wind rattle the doors. And there was a bright flash of light on the hillside--I looked up too late and only caught a glimpse of it. I thought it might be lightning but I didn't see anything coming from the sky; it seemed to be a circular/spherical flash of light from the ground.
I thought maybe a transformer had blown out or something, and shrugged and went back to reading submissions. And then maybe half an hour later, I was looking out at the hillside when it happened again, only much bigger and brighter--a big green ball of very bright light. I thought I saw smoke, too, but it may've been a cloud or an optical illusion.
Tried checking the TV and web for local news--I thought it must have been some kind of explosion or something (although there was no sign of fire afterward)--but couldn't find anything.
A few minutes later, Jay and Holly got home, and I told them about it, and Holly said that she's seen a flash of green light from that hillside fairly often during windstorms. She hasn't been able to find out anything more about it.
Ball lightning? Fireworks? A mad scientist conducting electrical experiments? The second flash was right around the time the Super Bowl was ending, but it looked to me much too big to be someone setting off home fireworks, and it didn't look like any fireworks I've seen before.
Anyway, figured it was possible one of you might have some idea what this is (or at least entertaining theories), so figured it was worth posting about.
P.S.: Although it was near the ocean, it had nothing to do with the "green flash" that some people have sometimes seen at sunset--this was well after sunset, and about 90° away from where the sun had set anyway.