Little Blue Bear [socs]

Beanie Baby America

I have a little blue bear on my desk at work. He’s a Ty beanie baby named America and I bought him when he came out after 9/11, which was shortly after I began working here (I’m writing this Friday lunchtime and will schedule it to post Saturday morning). On the left side of his tag it says that 100% of the profits from the purchase of the bear will go to Red Cross Disaster Relief. On the right side it says: “In memory of those who lost their lives in the national catastrophe that took place on September 11, 2001. We mourn for them and express our deepest sympathy to their families. God Bless America.”

A lot has changed in 18 years. My parents have both passed on. I’m divorced. My two daughters both graduated college and have gotten married. One of them has a baby, which magically makes me a grandma. I’ve moved five times. I had a relationship with a married man for two and a half years. If you believe in “bad karma,” then this gave me mine and I’ve been unable to have a happy/successful romance since. I also had a couple minor car accidents, which were horribly upsetting at the time, but in the grand scheme of things, not so bad really.

In these 18 years, I’ve been a flame warrior on Usenet, made enemies and turned them into Facebook “friends,” and since I quit FB most of them have forgotten my existence again. Perhaps that’s a good thing. I’ve been on Friendster and Twitter and Snapchat and G+ and other “social sites” too dark and dirty to mention here. I’ve experimented with different lifestyles to see if they were for me (no), and they’ve greatly enriched my fiction and poetry writing.

I’ve written a lot during these years. So so much. Poetry, novels, short stories. Zillions of blog posts and tweets. Loads of emails and texts. Have had interesting text chats with many men that I thought might “go somewhere,” but they didn’t and here I am alone, which isn’t a bad thing after all. I’m not sure anyone could really put up with me now… and vice versa.

I find that as I trudge toward my seventh decade I’m more or less the same person I was at age 14. I like to read romance novels and write poetry. I love games and puzzles, kittens and puppies, cookies and pizza. I’m not a sophisticated adult type person with advanced tastes in wine and music. Give me rock & roll and mac & cheese, woo! I’m a homebody and enjoy simple comforts. A hot shower is bliss. As I age, I’ve learned that I get more easily stressed out by other people, so I have to limit my interactions with them.

But through all this, I’ve had a good job, where I’ve been treated well. And every work day, little blue bear has been there to greet me, no matter what else is going on. I am grateful/thankful for my job and for my side work too… and for my book sales even though I wish there were more. (I’ll keep writing regardless.) When I began this post, I assumed at some point I’d say something political, but really there’s no need.❤️🧁💙

~*~

©️2019 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Four on Friday

Shamrock

From Rory’s Question Fun Directory!

1. Have you ever been afraid of the dark?

Yes, at various times. From age 11, when I comprehended my own death and nothingness, I spent a year or so utterly terrified and unable to sleep. I tried to talk to my parents, but they didn’t understand. Eventually, the thoughts just settled within me and I went on, but occasionally they surge up. When my ex moved out in 2009, I became afraid again and had to sleep with the TV on for a while. Sometimes now I have to keep a light on, just randomly.

2. Have you ever been arrested?

No.

3. What were your first thoughts this morning when you awoke?

My back hurts. It’s still so dark. Winter is coming. What horribleness is in the news? Did anyone like my twitter poem from last night? (Yes!)

4. If you could have witnessed anything around the world in whatever time zone, what would you have loved to have seen first hand?

All of the world without people on it yet.

~*~

© 2019 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

PFF15: Elevator Pitch

Time

Welcome to my Friday Flashback! This post originally appeared here on September 13, 2012, exactly seven years ago. I have not seen bicycle man since.

My Kind of Peeps

So this morning I was waiting for the elevator in my office building lobby. I had a big fucking headache, which is not unusual, especially lately because the weather keeps changing like a girl who can’t make up her mind which dress she wants to wear for prom.

There was a guy waiting for the elevator, too. He had a bicycle. Why? Idk. It was clear that he intended to take this bicycle onto the elevator, which was slightly disturbing.

There were two women waiting. They did not look happy. Why should they? We were all going to work.

The elevator arrived with a ding. And also an idiot. Some smiling doofus with a tie bounced off and held the door. “Good morning!” he chirped at Bike Guy.

Bike Guy grunted and wheeled his bike on. The women got on/in. I got in.

Tie Doofus still held the door. “No one’s smiling!” he admonished cheerfully.

One of the women smiled at him.

(It wasn’t me, obviously.)

“That’s better!” he twittered and released his hold on the door.

As the elevator began rising, Bike Guy said, “I hate to dismiss someone’s kindness, but….”

“That guy was really annoying,” one of the women finished.

“Yeah,” said the other one.

I said nothing. I don’t like to talk to strangers on elevators.

But I felt a vague glow of connectedness with these peeps, which is about as good as it gets for me at 9AM on a Thursday in Irvine.

~*~

© 2019 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Reaching

Trees and clouds at dawn

Desolate, I walked until the cold
Numbed the marrow of my bones.
The clouds roamed so restlessly,
But I headed East stone by stone–
Long past time I headed home.
Hours passed and a flash of gold
Showed me that tomorrow had come;
Shadows danced across the road
As I retraced my way to yesterday.
The tree I knew since I was born
Was skeletal now, weak, and shorn;
It trembled in the early morn,
Branches reaching not to me,
But to something that I could not see.

~*~

Written for the Daily Echo

~*~

©️2019 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Thursday Inspiration 21

Welcome to Thursday Inspiration! This is my weekly prompt post and hopefully it will inspire you to write something creative, perhaps a poem or a piece of flash fiction. If you’d like to share your writing with the community, please indulge me and tag your post with #p0eticlicense and/or #lightm0tifs, and of course link back if you wish. I will try to visit everyone who participates. 🙂

This week’s theme is fire and the picture is below. Here is the song snippet from “Fire and Rain” recorded by James Taylor in 1970:

I’ve seen fire and I’ve seen rain
I’ve seen sunny days that I thought would never end
I’ve seen lonely times when I could not find a friend
But I always thought that I’d see you again

Bonfire on the beach
Picture from the Happy Color app.

~*~

©️2019 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

People Are Like Cookies

Chocolate chip cookies

Beckie @ Beckie’s Mental Mess has a wonderful continuing series on various mental/emotional issues, and this week her focus is on introversion, a topic I apparently suggested (not that I have any memory of doing so). Soon, she’ll tackle amnesia, I hope! 😂

I’m going to answer the prompt questions that Beckie posted.

1. Are you more Isolated or Introverted?

I’m an introvert. I prefer to be alone or in small groups of close friends/family where we can have meaningful conversation. I also enjoy lots of online interaction. But I’m not isolated ~ most days I interact a little with actual people face to face and that’s fine.

2. Do you feel that there is a difference between the two?

Absolutely. You can be an introvert in the middle of a city, preferring not to talk to others while surrounded by people; while another person might be isolated due to circumstances, but not be introverted and love big parties.

3. What are the causes of being Isolated or Introverted?

Isolated can be by choice or circumstances. Introversion/extroversion traits are hardwired. I have always been exactly how I am.

4. Does your family/friends/co-workers question your behavior when you crave alone time and/or do not want to be bothered?

They don’t generally get fussed about my need for alone time. Some people have a bit of trouble understanding why I don’t wish to attend massive gatherings. A dozen or so people in a room is about the extent of my comfort level. More than that increases the noise to a point where the sound is just a wall crushing my head. There’s no way to have a real conversation either and I can’t stand nodding and smiling at BS.

I’m not talking about big open spaces like fairs or even restaurants that are designed for a lot of people. I’m talking about large social events where people are mashed together in rooms to be with each other. I just hate that. Why would I choose to go to such a thing when I could stay home with my boo kitty?🐱

5. Have you spoken to a therapist/psychiatrist in regards to being Isolated/Introverted?

No. Why would I? I’m fine!

6. What is a normal day being in your shoes?

I commute to work alone in my car to a small office where there is a moderate amount of talking, depending on the day and what needs to be done. Some days I’ll have a phone chat with one or both of my daughters for 20 minutes or so. Generally, I don’t socialize much with friends during the workweek. At night, I’ll do extra work, read, blog, etc.

7. If you were ever asked to go to dinner/party, would you go?  If not, what kind of excuses have you made up to get out of going?

Most weekends I do some sort of social thing that includes dinner, usually a potluck, followed by board games. But it’s with a reasonable number of people, like 10, not 100. Sometimes I’ll go to lunch with one friend, or to the movies with a few, or drive up to Los Angeles to hang with my family and whoever else might be at their place. I am not opposed to people! But they do need to be rationed, like cookies. Too many at once and I’ll just barf.🤮

~*~

©️2019 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

FPQ40: Control Freak

Fandango provocatively asks…

“How much control do you believe you have over your own life?”

Not much!

Now, that might strike some as a strange response, given that I’m sort of a control freak, but I think some of us CF types are that way precisely as a reaction to how little control we actually do have.

I mean, there’s really nothing I can do about so many things. Natural disasters come when they will, and sure I can have some bottled water and flashlights on hand, but I doubt those will help me in a real crisis. I don’t have the resources to create an underground bunker, assuming you can get to one in time and can last out whatever thing. What do you do in said bunker if you have a heart attack and need a doctor? Do you kidnap one and bring him with you just in case? How about surgery and meds?

Unnatural disasters are pretty much the same thing. I drive defensively, but there’s always some idiot blasting out of nowhere ~ and indeed one hit me and sped off three years ago. You try to plan for the “black swan,” but the one that appears is often not the one you modeled. I stay home a lot to avoid people and accidents, but a while back I fell in my bathroom and cracked my head on the tub.

Shit happens, and it keeps coming. I was contentedly living in my cozy apartment when the owner decided to switch things up, brought in a management company, and raised the rent 25%. Nothing I could do. Moving is expensive; housing in SoCal is insane. Leaving the area for a cheaper one… and hope to get a new job in my late 50s? Umm. I do feel trapped like a mouse.

How do I cope? Obsessively arrange my paper clips and shoes. Make sure all my socks are folded the same way. Keep items at right angles. Create lots of lists so I can cross things off. This all gives me the illusion of control in a chaotic world. But I know nothing is really in my control and that sucks.

(I am not seeking advice. Thank you!)

~*~

©️2019 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

In Other Words, spy…

Lizard climbing over fence

How carefully you climb,

How patiently you watch and wait;

And what a tragedy it is

For you to fall, little spy,

From another’s irresponsible mistake.

~*~

Written for Patricia’s Place

~*~

© 2019 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

One-Liner Wednesday

Maybe it’s my tinnitus, or just aging in general, but I’m finding it so lovely to be in silent spaces. My office is usually pretty quiet and I appreciate that. I don’t always play music in the car; sometimes it’s nice not to. I enjoy a white noise fan at home, and I don’t need background music or the din of TV voices to lull me into believing I have company. I’m very grateful for peace and silence.

~*~

Written for One-Liner Wednesday

~*~

© 2019 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Three Things Challenge 178 ~ Paula’s 3TC Finale!

three things challenge Notice! This is the last day I host 3TC. It’s been a pleasure. Thanks to all who’ve participated. You’ve made it fun!

The lovely Di @ Pensitivity101 will be hosting 3TC after this starting on the weekend ~ hurrah! I look forward to her posts and suggest you follow her if you aren’t already. 🎉

Welcome back to the Three Things Challenge. Every day at 10PM (PST) I will post three seemingly unconnected things that will, hopefully, ignite your muse. You don’t have to use all three things if you don’t want to. There are no restrictions on length, style, genre, or anything. Simply read the prompt, see where your muse takes you, and bring us along for the ride. Use 3TC as a tag if you’d like and link back to this prompt, or post your link in the comments below so others can find you.

Happy Writing! 😀

Today’s prompt: drummer, tapioca, greed

~*~

© 2019 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.