Tag Archives: driving

Better Left Unsaid

Quiet secret shush

Jim continues his Wednesday Thoughts series this week with the theme of “better left unsaid.” My first thought is why the eff didn’t my app reader pick up this post? (I saw it only because Sadje responded.) Is it better to quit complaining about every little WordPress glitch, or note them all in public as I’ve been doing? Generally, I enjoy my experience here very much, but I definitely don’t want to give the impression that it’s perfect, since there are constant screwups on their end.

Mostly, I don’t complain. This may be hard to believe, since I host the Monday Peeve, but, trust me, I could peeve all day every day and never run out. I think it’s better most of the time to simply suck it up and move on ~ if you focus on everything that’s wrong, then you’ll be mired in a depressive muck all day. Every day some driver does something idiotic/dangerous during my commute, but I try to let it go and not get enraged. And OK, sometimes that driver is me. Unlike most people, I don’t claim to be a perfect driver. Here’s a question: if everyone is as great behind the wheel as they claim, then why are there so many accidents?

Shrug

That was rhetorical.

What about romantic relationships? I never managed to negotiate the path between trivial nagging and speaking up about truly important things. My parents griped about every dumb thing (though, for the record, they were somewhat happily married for 50 years), and I didn’t want to engage in similar constant bickering. I usually opted for saying nothing, but eventually I’d explode, and the other person had no clue there was an issue. That’s not a good path either, obviously.

Luckily, I no longer have to worry about romance. With regular friendships, I just take a break from certain people when they annoy me, and then I reengage later when I’m over it. The great thing about this is they never even notice! No muss, no fuss.

Clean up

Outside of romance, my philosophy is that if there is any doubt about speaking up, then don’t. You can always say the thing later, but you can’t take it back once it’s out there. My belief is that most complaints are better left unsaid.

~*~
©️2022 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted.

TGIF ~ Double Shot

Julie Andrews Sound of Music

Happy Friday!

Whoops, I forgot to do a TGIF post last Friday… it’s a new feature here, so I’m not in the habit of thinking about it yet. But here I am TGing all over the place. This has been a tough week in the sleep department and I am tired. Anyway, since I skipped last week, I will do two today.

First, I recently saw a live performance of The Sound of Music and it was fabulous! I haven’t been to that many plays/musicals or concerts, mainly because they’re so pricey. But this one wasn’t too hurty at $40/seat… and they were good seats too. The singing was amazing and the stage sets were so well done ~ I was super impressed. The story deviated slightly in places from the movie version I have, but it still worked fine.

Headphones listen music

Second, I’m loving Spotify Premium. I created some playlists and clicked a zillion favorite artists so they know my taste now and create playlists for me. Since I’m on the paid version, I can skip around as much as I like… and there are no commercials or disc jockeys blabbering. It almost makes driving a pleasure. ALMOST.

OK. Your turn to share a TGIF!

~*~
©️2022 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted.

Things I Miss

Puzzle pieces

In this week’s episode of Throwback Thursday, Maggie asks about objects or places we miss having in our lives. Since that excludes people, I won’t write about my mom (or dad) again. They’re always on my mind though, especially in Spring when the dates come up for birthdays, death anniversaries, etc. And of course Mother’s Day is coming soon…

I miss doing huge jigsaw puzzles (besides the fact that I did them with my mom). These days I don’t have space to dedicate to a puzzle, nor will my back appreciate hunching over a table as I look for that elusive piece. On that note, I miss doing crafts generally. I don’t have the space to store supplies, nor do I want to spend money on them even if I could make room. As far as needlework, my eyes aren’t what they used to be, and after staring at the screen all day at work they just say no to counting stitches. I do have painting supplies, but I hate the results so much I haven’t bothered in months. Also, I end up hunching over when I paint, which my back does not like. Before anyone suggests an easel, my back also protests at standing in one spot for too long.

It’s not as though I pine away for these things. I miss them lightly and most days not at all.

shrug woman

Scrapbooking was tons of fun ~ Lauren’s A-Z posts this month remind me how much I enjoyed creating the pages. I have a dozen or so books that I revisit from time to time. But those days have passed, and while I get an occasional impulse to do a collage of the grands or kitties, I definitely do not have the urge to run out and buy supplies. Printing photos is relatively cheap, but the books and paper and all that add up quickly. It is nicer to have the books though than to search my phone for photos.

I don’t really miss “things” I’ve dumped. I used to have tons of books and all sorts of knickknacks, but I downsized (a few times) and threw out or donated most of my collections. I rarely if ever think about those items. I’ve also tossed out zillions of shoes, which ~ OK ~ I miss a little. It was nice to be able to wear cute heels with an outfit and not worry that my back would hurt in an hour.

red shoes

There are places I miss having in my life. I sometimes miss Chicago. I lived right next to Lake Michigan, and I could go out and take a nice long walk along the shore by myself. (Not when it was 40 below, obviously!) Now, I need to drive to the beach for a shore walk and it’s often crowded and a hassle. There were other good things about the city (back then), such as great public transportation and a bunch of stuff to do all conveniently located in one area ~ restaurants, movies, museums, etc. Out here in SoCal, most events require a significant car trip… and I hate driving.

I miss some restaurants like The Good Earth and Jerry’s Deli, both of which used to be nearby in Costa Mesa. I miss when things weren’t so crowded and you didn’t have to reserve a place in advance. I miss when the price of gas was only $4.99/gallon!

Most of all, I miss my fabulous memory and test-taking ability…

~*~
©️2022 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted.

Easy (Take It Easy) [April A2Z]

driving

Come on, baby
Don’t say “Maybe”
I gotta know
If your sweet love
Is gonna save me
We may lose and we may win
Though we will never be here again
So open up, I’m climbin’ in
So take it easy

Welcome to my April A-Z! I’m exploring songs by the fabulous Eagles and today’s feature is “Take It Easy,” the first track on their 1972 debut album Eagles. The song was written by Jackson Browne and Eagles member Glenn Frey (RIP), who also did the lead vocals. It’s listed in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as one of the 500 songs that shaped rock and roll. “Take It Easy” peaked at No. 12 on Billboard Hot 100 in July 1972 and is one of the Eagles’ signature songs.

JB recorded it himself for his own 1973 album For Everyman, but it did not chart. JB and Glenn have different versions of how they collaborated on the song. In Glenn’s, he heard JB working on the song in the apartment below him and moseyed on down to help. In JB’s, Glenn found JB messing with the song in a recording studio and pestered him to let him finish it and use it on the Eagles album. Who knows which is true? Maybe both! But lucky for us, they got it done.

The song (and album) was recorded in London with producer Glyn Johns. For “Take It Easy,” Glenn sings lead, Don Henley plays drums, Randy Meisner is on bass, and Bernie Leadon plays lead guitar and banjo. Henley, Meisner, and Leadon also provide harmonizing vocals. That first album went platinum with several top hits. It was viewed as country rock, a label that Henley and Glenn tried to shed later with a harder-edged sound.

E-trivia: The second verse of the song contains the line “Well, I’m a-standing on the corner in Winslow, Arizona” and Frey said that refers to a time when JB’s car malfunctioned there. The City of Winslow erected a statue of a man standing on the corner to commemorate the song, with a mural behind him depicting a Ford truck driven by a blonde woman. However, JB said that while his car did indeed break down in Winslow a few times, it was actually in Flagstaff, AZ where he was ogled by a woman in a truck, and Frey mashed the two events together. Hey, lyrical license, amirite?

~*~
©️2022 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted.

Chewy Share [syw]

earth world dove peace hands SYW

Melanie starts our first week in April with a freshly squeezed set of Share Your World questions. (She also asks for some suggestions for new ones, which I will put at the end.)

1. Are you more productive at night or in the morning? Do you think it’s possible to change and get used to another schedule?

Usually the morning is the best time for me to tackle work and chores, but sometimes if I’m not feeling great early in the day, I can get revved up for a burst of productivity in the afternoon. For creative writing, generally the words flow better later in the day, sometimes even late into the evening. Theoretically, it is possible to change, but most people don’t/won’t/can’t, and I don’t know if I could reset myself to clean the house at midnight or write poetry at 6AM.

2. What’s the biggest vehicle you’ve driven? If you don’t drive, what’s the biggest vehicle you’ve ridden in?

When it was time to take my youngest up to Berkeley to start college, I rented a small SUV. That’s what I told them I wanted anyway. But when I went to pick it up, they proudly presented me with a YUKON! I’d been upgraded against my will (for the same price). Most people would be thrilled, I guess, but I was horrified. How would I drive this enormous tank? As it turned out, the Yukon had lots of storage space, which was great for fitting in all the stuff she needed to take, and my older daughter loved driving the massive monster, so she basically sat behind the wheel the whole way there and back. I’d like to say I got used to driving the behemoth and it was fun, but I didn’t and it wasn’t.

3. What songs would be played on a loop in hell? (Suspend disbelief for this one, it’s cool not to believe in Hell, but let’s use our imaginations to answer. Of course one can always skip the questions they find odd too. And yes, I took into account that individual tastes will influence individual choices.)

It’s funny ~ in a serious discussion, I will say I’m an atheist and don’t believe in an afterlife or anything supernatural, but I always enjoy a fun, suspension of disbelief “what if” chat about heaven, hell, dragons, magic, genies, vampires, or whatever thing. So… what music would play in “my” hell? That’s a tough one because I don’t really hate any particular form of music, not even heavy metal or rap. They aren’t my preferred choice because I usually can’t understand what they’re saying, but I can easily tune out music if it’s not grabbing me. But there are bands I dislike, such as Rush. I appreciate the intelligence of their lyrics, but their music grates on my nerves and Geddy’s voice is so screechy it drives me bananas. Barbra Streisand is my second choice. Her voice is so high-pitched it breaks my brain.

4. (Deep and chewy philosophical question): What does it mean to be a person? What constitutes “personhood?” (there may be some diverse opinions, but we’re all mature adults in here, so be respectful of others please).

I saw Sandman say “cogito ergo sum” (I think; therefore, I am) and that basically is my view as well. I don’t believe a first-trimester fetus is a person (you know we’re going there) simply because it’s human with a beating heart. However, I also don’t think it is morally OK to terminate a healthy pregnancy after a certain point. What is that point? I don’t know. Isn’t it refreshing to hear someone say that after all the people who think they do know? They don’t. This is why it’s best to leave the decision up to the woman actually carrying the pregnancy, along with her doctor. Yes, I used “woman” and “her,” so please feel free to unfollow me if that gets your panties in a twist. Also, defining personhood is tricky when someone is in a coma or otherwise unconscious. How long do we wait after measurable brain activity ceases before we say their “personhood” has disappeared? I don’t know the answer to that either! More than a minute, less than a year…

5. How were your spirits (mood) over the past week?

The work week was just OK (had a lot of headaches), but the weekend went well. I didn’t go out much or overextend myself, so I had a chance to catch up on sleep and tasks. I feel pretty good right now.

*

Here are some possible future questions for Melanie. What’s your opinion on RSVPs? Obviously, formal occasions require them, but what about invitations to dinner/movies and the like? If a friend invites you to something, are you obligated to reply? What if you say yes and change your mind? How much notice is enough? Is it OK to simply no-show to a casual social event you’ve already agreed to?

~*~
©️2022 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted.

Food, Glorious Food!

pizza

Happy pi day! Don’t forget to celebrate with something circular. I’m going to catch up on some foodie questions that have been going around Blogland, after which I may or may not have a cookie.

First, E.M. continues her Sunday Ramble series in the kitchen.

1. When you are in the kitchen cooking (or cleaning), do you have anything playing in the background (i.e., TV, music, Julia Childs, etc.) while you are completing your tasks? If you are not someone who cooks or does chores in your kitchen, think of another chore or task. While you are doing that task, do you have anything going on in the background?

I usually do everything in dead silence except for driving when I almost always have music playing. I’m generally not in the mood for sound when I’m focusing on tasks, especially writing.

2. What is the weirdest thing you have ever eaten that someone cooked for you?

When I was 11 a waiter forced me to eat a snail. It was disgusting. Also, my mom made kidneys once and they smelled like pee, but I refused to taste them.

3. Thinking of that weird food, did you like it enough to eat it again or get the recipe?

Ick no.

4. What’s the food you usually refuse to share?

I don’t like to share anything liquid, as it seems much more germy than sharing solid food (daughters are excepted).

5. Do you use recipes when you cook, or do you have your own way of cooking the food that you love? If you are not the person who cooks in your household, pick a task that has directions/instructions. Do you follow the directions or put them to the side?

I try to follow directions, with cooking and whatever else, but I get impatient and/or daydream, so I usually end up distracted and off on my own path.

shrug woman

6. Bonus: Pick three smells in your kitchen that make you happy when you smell them.

Cookies baking, onions sautéing, coffee brewing.

JYP replied to E.M.’s Ramble and asked a question of her own:

What is your cooking/kitchen disaster story? I’ve shared at least three here and I have more. Tell me in comments or link back with a post!

Welp, I told the story of our Revolutionary War Donuts for one of Lauren’s Throwback Thursday prompts. Then there’s the time when I was newly married and I accidentally spilled a ton of black pepper into the veal dish I was cooking. We ate it anyway, and I had stomach spasms for a week because of the irritant. Around 5 years ago, I attended an event with a lot of elderly people. I had the brilliant idea of making spicy cold noodle salad. I think I followed the directions, but it was really really spicy. No one would eat it, and I had to bring the entire vat back home with me. I ate some for lunch the next day, then I threw it out.

Just remembered! When I was a teenager, I wanted to make brownies, but we had no vegetable oil or butter… so I used olive oil. Horrible! Right in the trash. Also, at the end of my marriage, I made enchiladas with tofu. Everyone hated them, but I thought they were fine. If you want to get rid of a spouse, I highly recommend this method.

Finally, Sadje joins the party with her Sunday Poser:

What about you, what is your favorite dessert? How often do you indulge your craving for this dessert?

Everyone knows I love cupcakes, but I usually will have one as a whole meal, not dessert, because each one has like 500 calories. Does that count still? I don’t know. And yes, I understand that having a cupcake instead of a “real” meal is unhealthy, but I don’t do it often, maybe once a month, and eating too much is unhealthy too.

But let me tell you about this wonderful treat I had yesterday. I was out to a late lunch with friends in Long Beach at a Mediterranean restaurant called Open Sesame (how cute is that?). We were ordering yummy stuff to share, and for dessert we found something interesting called baklava crumble. This treat was served with ice cream and we chose pistachio. We divided it into four servings, so basically it was a large spoonful, and it was delicious! A perfect little treat to end a superb afternoon. Here’s a pic before we mangled it all up onto plates.

Baklava crumble and ice cream

~*~
©️2022 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted.

I Didn’t Know Which Way to Go [socs]

map

Before GPS, I was a mess. It’s important for me to remember this so I don’t start freaking out that I’m senile. Well, I might be senile, but the fact that I can get lost in an elevator doesn’t prove it. I’ve always been totally inept with directions.

The weird thing to me is that I rarely, if ever, lose anything. I have an almost photographic memory of where all my stuff is at all times. I’m even good at helping others find things they’ve lost because I’m so organized and methodical. But not when it comes to understanding where I physically exist. In a building, it’s difficult for me to orient myself as far as imagining the exits and streets. I can’t picture them in my head or have any kind of confident feeling about my location the way I can picture where things are in my closet.

gatsby closet shoes boots cat
Oh hello!

Anyway, it was almost comical how I got lost all the time when I first began driving in small-town Illinois. After we moved to Chicago, things were better because the city streets were basically a grid and public transportation was very easy to use. But California? Forget it! Nothing makes any sense here as far as road design and half the time streets loop de loop around so you don’t even know if you’re going west or south. Sometimes you’re parallel to another street and then a mile later they intersect.

wtf boggle game

GPS saves me though. I plug in an address and boom… no more driving around in circles. As long as I don’t start thinking I know a shortcut or something, I get where I need to be. I told you the other week I had to go to the civic center in Santa Ana, and I turned the wrong way when exiting the building. To get back to my car, I walked in a giant circle that took half an hour. Oh well… at least I got some exercise!

Well they took me out on the old Kings Road
I didn’t know which way to go
There was people all around wearin’ funny lookin’ clothes
Some boys, some girls, some I don’t know
I didn’t know which way to go
I’m a new world boy on the old Kings Road

~*~
©️2022 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted.

SLS: Last Kiss

fantasy couple kiss forest

We were out on a date in my daddy’s car
We hadn’t driven very far
There in the road, straight ahead
A car was stalled, the engine was dead

I couldn’t stop, so I swerved to the right
I’ll never forget, the sound that night
The screamin’ tires, the bustin’ glass
The painful scream, that I heard last

Thanks go out to Jim Adams, our weekly host of Song Lyric Sunday. This week, I choose ”Last Kiss” to illustrate the theme of destruction and death. The song is about a car accident that results in the demise of a man’s girlfriend. He is able to give her one last kiss before she passes on.

I lifted her head, she looked at me and said
“Hold me darling, just a little while”
I held her close, I kissed her our last kiss
I found the love, that I knew I had missed
And now she’s gone, even though I hold her tight
I lost my love, my life that night

The song was written and recorded by Wayne Cochran in 1961 and did not do well on the charts. It did better in 1963 when he rerecorded it under a new label. J. Frank Wilson and the Cavaliers’ version was a hit in 1964, possibly due to the weird factor of Frank singing it on crutches because of a terrible car accident he got into during the tour (their manager died in the wreck).

Oh, where oh where can my baby be?
The Lord took her away from me
She’s gone to heaven, so I got to be good
So I can see my baby when I leave this world

I’m sharing my favorite cover, which is Pearl Jam’s. Their 1999 version was a smash ~ reaching No. 2 in the US and Canada, and going 3x platinum in Australia. Pearl Jam raised $10 million for Kosovo refugees with “Last Kiss” as part of the 1999 charity compilation album No Boundaries. The song later appeared on their 2003 album Lost Dogs.

~*~
©️2022 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted.

SLS: Hot Rod Lincoln

man driving car

Have you heard this story of the Hot Rod Race
When Fords and Lincolns was settin’ the pace.
That story is true,
I’m here to say
I was drivin’ that Model A.

Jim warned us that it might be difficult to find a song that went with this Song Lyric Sunday theme of mechanical stuff, but he agreed that a car would work. “Hot Rod Lincoln” doesn’t simply mention a car, but it very specifically discusses the various aspects of this hot rod. I like that the song ends with a moral, of sorts, in that the speeder is caught by the cops and held accountable for his reckless driving. Often, street races end in crashes and/or deaths, so it’s not really something to glamorize ~ but I still like this song!

Pulled out of San Pedro late one night
The moon and the stars was shinin’ bright.
We was drivin’ up
Grapevine Hill
Passing cars like they was standing still.

HRL is actually an old oldie, written by Charlie Ryan and first released in 1955. It’s a “talky” song rather than a “singy” song, sort of like rap maybe? IDK. But you can understand the words. It describes an illegal street race up the 5 Freeway in California out of San Pedro, over the Grapevine, and beyond, which may have been feasible back then, but it isn’t with today’s freeway traffic, even in the middle of the night. Not that I ever tried it! Supposedly, Ryan based the song on his own souped-up Lincoln, which he raced in Idaho, but he changed the song’s setting to California to make it more dramatic.

Wound it up to a hundred-and-ten
My speedometer said that I hit top end.
My foot was blue, like lead to the floor.
That’s all there is and there ain’t no more.

This is my favorite type of song, where it actually tells a story from start to finish. The tempo escalates as the race goes on, pulling the listener in emotionally. What’s going to happen next?!

Smoke was comin’ from out of the back
When I started to gain on that Cadillac.
Knew I could catch him, I thought I could pass.
Don’t you know by then we’d be low on gas?

Ryan did OK with the song on the country charts, but Commander Cody and his Lost Planet Airmen did a lot better with their cover in 1972, when it reached No. 9 on Billboard Hot 100. I think it was a one-hit wonder though ~ anyone heard of any other Commander Cody songs? Love the name of the band!

~*~
©️2022 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted.

Whatever! [socs]

Pink unicorn frog toad

It irritates me when people post their Wordle scores because there is nothing interesting about seeing the colored squares. It would be fun to see the words people tried, but we can’t have that because SPOILERS.

I have never understood the freak-out about spoilers (of any kind). So what if you know? Maybe it’s my romance novel background ~ we know the story always ends with the couple together and the fun is in seeing how they overcome their obstacles. There’s no such thing as a romance novel or romcom spoiler. But I just saw people blocking each other on FB the other day because one of them “spoiled” a game of silly Wordle.

I no longer play Wordle or any variations because they have lost their shine from so many taking it all way too seriously. It’s a game, folks. I love games, but I like them to be played for enjoyment, not anxiously, nor for bragging rights. Every day I do the 5 Microsoft Solitaire challenges on my phone and play a game or two of Scrabble against the computer. Why? For fun!

Last weekend I took the Superb Owl a tiny bit more seriously because I bet five bucks on the Bengals. Spoiler: they lost. Had a great time with friends as I watched the game in my tiger shirt and munched on the crispy tiger butter squares I made. I have half a bag of Rice Krispies left and a random assortment of chips to melt in. Or maybe I’ll do something else with them, but it has to be soon because I keep eating the chocolate ones.

I bought myself gifts for Valentines Day: a pretty necklace and a Sprinkles cupcake. The cupcake was red velvet cake with cream cheese frosting and a million sprinkles. It was utterly scrumptious.

I also bought myself a color block cardigan for finishing my taxes early. Go me! I already got $9 back from California… that’s two cupcakes. (Almost.)

I’m sad about Olympic ice skating. I knew it wasn’t 100% fair for all sorts of reasons, but the fact that one group is blatantly doping up minors and treating them abusively just turns my stomach. Skating was the one aspect of the Olympics I truly enjoyed, but I doubt I will ever watch it again.

I’m really tired tonight (I write my SOCS on Friday night and schedule it for Saturday morning). I had four long drives last weekend, which were physically exhausting, and I haven’t fully recovered. Also, midweek I thought I lost an important document and became horribly stressed over that, so I’m also emotionally wiped out. Spoiler: I didn’t lose it.

It’s a 3-day weekend and I just wanna chill and do nothing. I have a social event tomorrow night though. Maybe I’ll have more energy then. Whatever

PS: WP is telling me my “color combination” may be hard to read. It’s black text on a white background. Gah, are they up to some new weirdness? My scheduler wasn’t working earlier either. JUST LEAVE THINGS ALONE! Why must they constantly ruin our blogs, waaah…

~*~
©️2022 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted.