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basic (?) electricity

Hi QList,

What am I missing here?  The trunk light isn't working.  A DMM connected
across the empty socket terminals shows 12.4 V.   But when the bulb is
connected either in series or in parallel, the voltage drops to zip.  However,
when the ground is transferred from the neg terminal to a chassis ground, the
bulb goes on and the DMM shows 12.3 V. 

Can anybody explain what is happening, please?

This is the 89 200q