Tag Archives: driving

FPQ56: Drive Me Crazy

Fandango’s provocative question

Fandango provocatively asks…

What’s something you consider to be terrifying that you have come to accept as a fact of life?

It’s probably not going to surprise anyone who knows me when I say driving. This is not an irrational fear. Let’s begin with some data.

The U.S. leads the way (rah!) on traffic fatalities. We have 12.4 per 100,000 population, about 50% higher than other Western nations. (source) Check that link for some reasons why.

Daily, I see people running red lights. Not once in a while… daily. I never see a cop chase after them, not once. Red light cameras have mostly been taken away due to cost and also there was concern they were causing more accidents (like the way Trump “caused” the Iranians to shoot down their own plane).

People speed and change lanes unsafely because… well, it’s all about them. They assume everyone else is paying close attention to the road. And whatever they have to do is more important than being safe. If they’re late, well, now that becomes our problem. God forbid people learn to leave enough time for appointments.

They tailgate because they are late and they are frustrated. Driving unsafely makes them feel better, I guess. Or they’re just not paying attention because they’re texting, chatting, eating, daydreaming, whatever. Or their judgment is impaired from drugs or stupidity or lack of sleep. Then there are the drivers who are armed, ready to shoot you over who knows what…

So, I “share” the roads with these maniacs and idiots and rage-filled criminals and hope every day not to die or get mangled in a car wreck. In 2018, about 40,000 people died in vehicle crashes ~ forty thousand (source) ~ not to mention all the injuries.

It’s weird how we’re supposed to be scared of molesters hiding behind trees in the park and bad dudes sneaking across the border to steal our lunches, but me… I’m terrified of driving, and yet I accept it as a fact of life here in Southern California. If you live in an area with great public transportation and don’t have to drive, consider yourself lucky!🍀

~*~

Image from Fandango himself.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

On Our Way [socs]

Stream of consciousness Saturday

On our wayto better days. That’s what we say, pumped up with our New Year’s Goals. Like many others, I’ve vowed to get in better shape… and the parking lot at the gym is crowded now. Yes, I drive to the gym, even though it’s in my condo complex, since management can’t seem to program my electronic key to get me through the last walk-thru gate. It’s like the opening sequence to Get Smart, if you’re old enough to remember that show. But whenever I ask about the key, the person who needs to deal with it has just left for the day. 🙄

I’m trying to avoid getting raging angry about so many things (another resolution). So what if I can’t walk through to the gym? It’s not the worst thing in the world. Now, the gate closest to my apartment has quit working from the outside… that’s okay, right? They’ll fix it eventually and it’s fine to take the long way around to a different gate. More exercise! Plus, it’s not like I do everything perfectly myself… I’ve made plenty of mistakes in my life too. As long as one gate works, and I can get home… like, whatever. 😜

My three words are from the chapter titled “Worth” in Jennifer Weiner’s book Hungry Heart. I don’t know why I purchased this book, except it has a picture of an upscale looking Hostess cupcake on the cover. I don’t think I’ve read any of her novels. I wanted to enjoy this book, because cupcake and also a smart and funny writer writing smartly and humorously about feeling fat and unloved… that’s so unusual! 🙃

But HH is incredibly tedious and dejavuey… like haven’t a million other smart fat girls written smartly and fatly about being smart and fat? Yawnnnn. And I find myself skimming much of Jennifer’s complaining. I loved her trip to Israel though, and how she finally decided to say eff it regarding other people’s opinions when she returned. Yeah! Who cares what people think! 😎

I thought the story would really take off from there, but no, back to yawwnville. An autobiography doesn’t have to be boring; I’ve read interesting ones. But they need to be edited, and saggy sections should be cut. Am I going to abandon it? No, I’ll probably skim the rest, so I can get credit for it on Goodreads. And I remain hopeful that there is something more to it I can enjoy, since I did get totally immersed in the one section. 🤩

Speaking of saggy things, exercise makes you hungry. If you burn up 100 calories on a bike, your brain will say hello time for a vat of pasta. And you can say no brain we are having a sensible scoop of tuna and some yummy crisp veggies. But our brain is sulking and plotting on how to trip us up. It’s not about being a “good” person or a “bad” person; we all come from a long line of people who avoided starving to death when there was very little food. Yay us and our superhero metabolisms. 😜

I see I forgot to finish this post Friday night and schedule it at 4am Saturday because I’ve been obsessed with watching Jeopardy on Netflix this week (not the GOAT thing, but catching up from last year). When I got home at 10, I turned on the TV, forgetting all about blogging. That’s unusual for me, but these are strange times. 😳

Luckily, I woke up earlier than God… and the first thing I thought of was yikes I didn’t post for SOCS! 😱

~*~

Image credit to Shelley Krupa.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

PFF31: Cupcakes!

Friday Flashback

Welcome to Paula’s Friday Flashback! This is a challenge begun by Fandango and it’s fun to see what we posted back when (as well as the comments). The below is a reblog of a post I made on January 4, 2013. You’ll have to click through to see the pics. Enjoy!

Sprinkles ATM Cupcake

OK. I finally got to try a Sprinkles ATM cupcake after all this time ~ the ATM is only in select locations, the closest one to me being in Beverly Hills. I ended up there early in the morning on a Sunday, and I won’t regale you with my parking adventures, but trust me, they were epic, as usual.

As you can see, it is pink, and states quite clearly that it is a CUPCAKE ATM, so that you do not confuse it with something else. So far, so good. But things went downhill from there. First, it was early morning, as stated, and the sun was glaring right on the screen making it impossible to read anything at all. I had no idea what I was doing. None. But I could not leave without a cupcake! So I slid my credit card through the thingie and hoped for the best. (Hoped I did not get charged for 500 cupcakes or something.)

Nothing happened. I shaded my eyes every which way and barely made out some squares on the screen. I touched one. Still I had no clue what was going on. Could not see anything because of the glare. But I must have done something because things whirred and clanked and a box appeared ~ my cupcake!

I peeked into the box… bummer. It was a black and white (chocolate cake with white non-buttercream frosting and choccy sprinkles). Oh well.

Finally I could see the main screen a little bit ~ turned out there were only three cupcakes available that day: the B&W, an all-choccy, and a doggie cupcake. Ugh. That’s a terrible selection. I was a little worried about my credit card as I had no idea how much was charged, and there was no receipt, plus also no way to say I was finished with the transaction. But it turned out to be $4, no big deal.

I drove home with my precious. And I was determined to judge fairly, even if I had a little bit of a sad over the choice of cupcake ~ maybe it was a good thing to try a new flavor, right? Right!

The cake was very fresh. Peeps might think it wouldn’t be, coming out of a machine, but it was soft and nummy, and super-chocolatey. Even though choccy cake is not my fave, this cake was tasty plus. The frosting disappointed. I can deal with non-buttercream (I heart Sprinkles strawberry, forex, and it’s NB), but this was just… white. Had a nice texture, but its taste was sugarbland.

So there you go, the ATM cupcake review, done and dusted. I will eventually try Sprinkles ice cream, but not when the weather is so freezing.

My new year got off to a bit of a rocky start with many hours wasted on things that made me feel bad and not good, so I’m going to change that this weekend. It just takes paying attention to what I’m doing and remembering which things I want more of in my life, and which things less of (or eliminated). That sounds easy enough, right?

/end reblog

~*~

Image from Pexels.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

New Year’s Questions

I’ve been double-tagged! 🥳 Yep, both Sadje and Rory tagged me to answer the NYQ’s that are going around Blogville. Thanks for thinking of me! 🥰 I’m happy to answer the questions, but I’m not going to tag anyone else.

2020 Bitmoji

1. If you could celebrate the New Year anywhere, where would it be?

I celebrated the New Year by going for an early walk in Huntington Beach Central Park. It was beautiful.

Huntington Beach Central Park

2. What is your favorite snack food for New Year?

I began the New Year right by not having snacks.

3. Have you ever kept a New Year’s resolution? If so, what was it?

l kept today’s ~ exercised, ate right, worked, wrote, cleaned, did laundry, etc. Tomorrow should be another good day too.

4. What do you want to do with your blog next year?

I’m happy with my blog the way it is.

5. Do you prefer a big party or a small gathering to celebrate? 

I like staying home with my kitty on New Year’s Eve. Too many drunks on the roads. As far as New Year’s Day, I celebrated by getting stuff done on my to-do list, lol.

~*~

My favorite New Year’s Memory…

Staying up all night to chat with a new man I connected with on a dating site. That was fun. I miss chatting with people who live far away and don’t expect to meet anytime soon or even ever, but love to talk just because. No agenda other than to exchange written words. Those are my kind of peeps.

We did meet though, months later, after chatting daily. It was a bit disappointing.

~*~

Images from Bitmoji me.

©️2020 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon.

Song Lyric Sunday ~ Holiday

Song Lyric Sunday

Jim gives us a topical theme this week with the major winter festivals approaching. I chose “Holiday Road” written by Lindsey Buckingham in 1983. I’ve loved this song for years and mentioned to a friend the other week that it would be good for our singalong this Saturday (which would actually be yesterday since I’m writing this post on Thursday to be scheduled three days from now ~ got that?). She said “oh, from the movie?”

Turns out there’s a movie! It’s one of those Chevy Chase things I’ve never seen (Angie is probably shocked again). Yes! I have never seen a Vacation movie! But not only is this song in the movie, it was written for the movie! I’ve just been cluelessly loving it all these years despite not seeing the thing. It’s like nomming up stuffing not knowing it was originally made to go with turkey, or something. 🤪

Apparently “Holiday Road” was in the Vacation movie sequels too, except for Christmas Vacation, since things don’t have to make sense. It has become one of LB’s best known songs, and he released a live version in 2008 and a remastered version in 2015.

Holiday Road by Lindsey Buckingham

I found out long ago
It’s a long way down the holiday road
Holiday road
Holiday road
Jack be nimble, Jack be quick
Take a ride on the West Coast kick
Holiday road
Holiday road
Holiday road
Holiday road
I found out long ago
It’s a long way down the holiday road
Holiday road
Holiday road
Holiday road
Holiday road

~*~

Image from Jim Adams

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

Ringlets and Winglets [socs]

Stream of consciousness Saturday

I’m closing out 2019 as a single person with no romantic prospects on the horizon. Lately, I’ve been happy to mingle at many social events with no ulterior motive and that’s been nice. In the past, between 2011 and 2016, whenever I went to an event, my nerves were all jingle-jangle with the idea that there could be “someone new” there waiting for me. But slowly I’ve given up on that idea and view these events now strictly on their own merits, such as… how far do I have to drive, will parking be a pain, are peeps going to be playing board games, etc.

For 2020, the things that make my brain go all a-tingle are: healthier habits as far as eating and exercise, finishing some of my WIPs and putting them on my Kindle bookshelf for sale, enjoying my lovely new apartment and surrounding area, spending time with loved ones, reading more books.

If you’re wondering what the title of this post means… I haven’t a clue. Something to do with pigs (tails… curly… ringlets) and chickens (wings… winglets) that I was going to attempt to mash into the part where I talk about healthier habits and not eating fried food except I don’t anyway except for donuts and french fries which are neither pork nor fowl, but idek what I had in mind now so bye.

~*~

Image credit to Shelley Krupa

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

BRA-less No More

True story Bitmoji

So I had this incredibly stressful evening changing my address at the DMV online. Hopefully I didn’t screw it up because god forbid I won’t be able to vote for one of the doofuses in the early California primary. I waited until tonight because of my tags, which had already been sent, and I wanted to make sure they were actually in my hand before I began messing with stuff. The last thing I need is to stress about my tags being late, or not getting forwarded, or some horrible thing. But they are here, and all is good. (Another time we’ll discuss how I can’t bear it if I put them on the slightest bit crooked.)

Later Bitmoji

But then I was sad because no one tagged me for a Blogger Recognition Award (BRA). Everyone else had a BRA, but I was going around BRA-less and starting to feel a bit self-conscious. I said this to Jim and he took pity on me, bestowing on me what we call in the business a “pity BRA.”

Some of you might think, “that’s no good… I’d be too proud to accept a pity BRA.” Well, that’s you then. Me, I’m taking it. Thanks Jim! I can always count on my good buddy Jim to help me out. I ran right back over here to display my BRA for all to see and get on with doing BRAly things.

Blogger Recognition Award

I thanked Jim already yay! Now I have to bore you all to death with the story of how I began blogging…

In the beginning, all was darkness. Then I turned on a light, made a cup of tea, and thought what the heck am I going to do at 5 in the morning? Some of my writer friends had already begun blogs (2004), in order to promote their books and talk shop, so I decided to do that too. I mostly just blabbed on about whatever I felt like though, which was more fun than sticking to one topic. I was obsessed with stats back then, and this ultimately ruined my blogging experience. I highly recommend not allowing yourself to be consumed by counts of followers and views. In any case, my blog blurged along for several years, as I jabbered on about All The Things, until I got into a flamewar with some nutjobs about pitbulls. That’s when my comments got hacked and things went all kerflooey, to use a technical term.

Eff it all Bitmoji

I gave up blogging! Yep, I archived and deleted that blog and said pffft who needs this?

For about five minutes. Then I made a new blog where I only posted about cupcakes. And cats and shoes. That was boring. It hit the trash can after a little while. I had a few invite-only blogs at times too. Those were a bit more lively. 🌶

Finally, I began Light Motifs on Blogger. It worked out well except I like WordPress better for comments and such, so I made this one as version two. Originally, this particular blog began small-scale and I was mostly posting song lyrics 🎶 regarding a troubled relationship like some teenager. But gradually I branched out to full-on pointless rants and jabber as you see today.

Now, I’m supposed to give two pieces of advice to new bloggeroos. Everybody says the same things… write what you enjoy and don’t obsess about follower numbers yada yada (which I already said anyway), so I’m gonna say new things:

1. Don’t post about the same thing all the time because that’s boring. Unless you’re really really funny, then okay, but chances are you’re not, so don’t.

2. Don’t ask for money just because you exist in the WordPress community. I also exist, as do all the other bloggers here. And guess what? We all like money! Isn’t that an interesting coincidence? Why the hell should I buy someone else “a cup of coffee” because I like one of their posts? I drink coffee too… maybe they should buy me a cup. It’s so freaking ridiculous! Just. Don’t.

Note how my advice is negative rather than positive. That’s just how I am, spreading dark clouds of strife wherever I go.

Santa Bitmoji

~*~

Images from Bitmoji

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

The Monday Peeve 12

The Monday Peeve kitty

Smiles and positive posts are all well and good, but sometimes I need to vent a bit. How about you? That’s what The Monday Peeve is all about, a chance to blow off a little steam at the beginning of the week, so then we can go merrily on our way once again (hah). I’ll pick a topic that’s on my mind, but you can vent about whatever you please, here in comments or on your own blog. Grab the photo, use the #TMP tag, and link back to me (or not ~ I dgaf), and Bob’s yer uncle. I do reserve the right to delete any links that offend my delicate sensibilities. So far, none have, but it could happen! I have feelings!

I could do all my peeves about driving, but I don’t want to be a boring boring. Now, I’m not the world’s greatest driver. I don’t have the fastest reflexes. My depth perception has never been fab. I make up for these things by being more cautious, which is a good trait in any case. I don’t mean I drive way under the speed limit, but I do stick pretty close to the speed limit, which in California makes other drivers really angry. Nothing makes some man in a truck more enraged than having to obey the law as he exits the freeway. What a horrible inconvenience! Why, I might have delayed him by a fraction of a second. He’ll show his displeasure by aggressively tailgating me. That’s so dangerous, but I don’t speed up to make him happy. I just get peeved.

~*~

Image originally from Pixabay.

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

One-Liner Wednesday

Cookie Monster

Let me tell you about my flight to Oakland last night. I was flying out of Long Beach, boarding time 7:15PM. I left my place at 4:15 for a 20 mile drive because we are talking about SoCal traffic on the 405. It was all a crawl, natch, but still I arrived in plenty of time, checked in, all that. Found out my flight was delayed 20 minutes. No biggie. I began to read a book on Kindle. At least I wasn’t on the Sacto flight, which had been delayed hours.

After a while, they began to give the Sacto peeps vouchers. I bought some coffee. When the vouchers were sorted out, my fight was now delayed an hour. Okay fine. I was 30% done with my book by now. Then we began to board. Found a seat, etc. We were all settled in and the captain came on the intercom to tell us that the power was out in Oakland.

Yep. Planes were trapped on the ground and new ones could not fly in. They were fixing it. When would it be fixed? Dunno. So, I kept reading. Most of the plane was filled with young folks. They all thought this was a great time to talk to each other and chat on their phones. So annoying! Why can’t people just text? The girl next to me called her mom to complain that it was the worst day ever and she was starving to death. To be fair to her, they didn’t serve any snacks on this flight, not even that tiny crappy bag of pretzels.

Finally, at 9:20 we took off. Really, this was only an hour and a half late. I was around 60% done with my book. I’m really glad it was an engrossing story because the flight was bumpy especially at the end. They made the people with beverages give them up about 5 minutes after serving. Oh well. (I didn’t get one anyway.) At least I got here! It was so windy cold and rainy in Oakland though. I was prepared for it, but even so… brrrr.

The arrival line was super busy and my daughter had a hard time finding me even at almost 11PM. But we finally connected and it was awesome to see her and jump into her warm car. And guess what? She brought me a cookie!

Frosted cookie

For the record, this is a different cookie. They have a whole package in the house. Er half a package… 😍

~*~

Linda’s One-Liner Wednesday

Cookie Monster image found on Google

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

Red Red Wine (Miss You)

I don’t always do photo prompts, but when I do… I like to do Cee’s color prompts! Enjoy a splash of red this fine morning. ❤️

Red roseCalifornia drivingChihuly glass artKitty and red sparkly shoes Red wine at California winery

~*~

Images are all mine mine MINE! 😛

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