I’m Sorry, I Need to See Your ID

I’m not yet a senior citizen and won’t be officially considered one for many years, but I saw a headline this morning that piqued my interest: Nine Things Seniors Can Do Cheaper Than the Rest of Us.

A further search on the internet revealed that there are some great opportunities for those 55 and over to save some money and do some pretty fun stuff:

  • Get a great hotel room rate at Clarion, Comfort Inn, Econo Lodge, Motel 6, Best Western and Marriott
  • If you are 50 or over (not even officially a senior citizen), you get 10$ off at Banana Republic!
  • On Wednesdays, anyone 60 or over gets a 15% discount
  • Tuesdays at Marshalls, TJ Maxx and Ross get seniors an extra 10% off
  • The first Monday of every month at Stein Mart those 55 and over get an additional 20% off of clearance items (great if you shop all year for Christmas)
  • Clark’s shoe stores gives everyone 62 and over 10% off everyday
  • The first Wednesday of every month at Albertson’s & Kroger Grocery Stores, seniors over 55 get 10% off their groceries (check with the store manager for confirmation)
  • Publix gives seniors 5% off groceries every Wednesday
  • If you’re over 60 show your ID to the ticket window at AMC theaters and get 30% off
  • Regal Cinemas gives seniors over 60 35% movie tickets
  • Busch Gardens in Tampa, Fla., offers people 50 and older $13 off a one-day pass
  • Six Flags Amusement Parks across the country offer discounts – inquire at the ticket window or call ahead
  • SeaWorld in Orlando gives those 50 and over a $3 discount on a one day pass
  • Seniors 62 and over can get a lifetime pass for camping and admission at any National Park or Attraction for $10 PLUS 50% off of additional services within the parks
  • Public Transportation gives seniors a discount with proof of age
  • Amtrak discounts tickets for those 62 and over by 15%
  • In Canada you get 10% off Rail transportation if you are 60 or over
  • If you’re 65 and use Trailways you get a 10% discount
  • Greyhound gives those 62 and over a 5% discount
  • If you belong to AARP and need a rental car, Alamo and Avis five you 25% off
  • Enterprise gives Senior AARP members 5% off, National gives 30% off and Dollar gives a 10% discount to those 50 and over
  • Save on a basic cell phone with Verizon or  AT&T if you are 65 or over, with plans that start at $29.99/month (200 Anytime minutes/500 Nights and Weekends) – If you want SmartPhone plans (internet/data access) that will cost you more
  • Jitterbug gives Seniors a no-frills, basic cell phone for $14.99/month
  • Restaurant Discounts

    • Applebee’s: 15% off  with Golden Apple Card (60+)
    • Arby’s 10% off (55+). Varies by location, please call your local Arby’s.
    • A&W All American Food: Varies by location.
    • Ben & Jerry’s: 10% off (60+)
    • Bennigan’s: discount varies by location
    • Bob’s Big Boy: discount varies by location (60+)
    • Boston Market: 7% off (65+)
    • Burger King: 10% off or a $.75 drink  (60+). (varies by location)
    • Captain D’s Seafood: discount varies on location (62+)
    • Chick-Fil-A: 10% off or free small drink or coffee (55+) (varies by location)
    • Chili’s: 10% off (55+)
    • CiCi’s Pizza: 10% off (60+)
    • Culver’s: 10% off (60+)
    • Dairy Queen: 10% off (60+), varies by location
    • Denny’s: 10% off, 20% off for AARP members (55+)
    • Dunkin’ Donuts: Free donut if you show your AARP card and buy a large or extra large coffee.
    • Einstein’s Bagels: 10% off baker’s dozen of bagels (60+)
    • El Pollo Loco: 10% off (55+) varies by location.
    • Friendly’s: Discounted breakfast (60+)
    • Fuddrucker’s: 10% off any senior platter (55+)
    • Gatti’s Pizza: 10% off (60+)
    • Golden Corral: 10% off (60+)
    • IHOP: 10% off (55+)
    • Jack in the Box: up to 20% off (55+)
    • KFC: free small drink with any meal (55+)
    • Krispy Kreme: 10% off (50+)
    • Long John Silver’s: various discounts at participating locations (55+)
    • Mrs. Fields: 10% off at participating locations (60+)
    • Ponderosa: Senior menu from 11a-4p (60+)
    • Shoney’s: 10% off
    • Sonic: 10% off or free beverage (60+), varies by location
    • Steak ‘n Shake: 10% off every Monday & Tuesday (50+)
    • Subway: 10% off at manager’s discretion (60+)
    • Sweet Tomatoes: 10% off (62+)
    • Taco Bell: 5% off; free beverages for seniors (65+)
    • TCBY: 10% off (55+)
    • Tea Room Cafe: 10% off (50+)
    • Village Inn: 10% off (60+)
    • Waffle House: 10% off every Monday (60+)
    • Wendy’s: Discount and age limit vary by location.  Ask your local restaurant for details.
    • Whataburger: Discounted soda
    • White Castle: 10% off (62+)

Remember that you don’t get the discounts unless YOU ASK for them.  Just be assertive and ask the simple question, “Do you offer a senior discount?”  People hesitate to assume the more active, younger looking, perhaps surgically enhanced & botoxed seniors of this generation are really “old enough” to receive the discounts, so be flattered and be prepared to show your ID.  I, for one, intend to make everyone ask for my ID when I am old enough to ask for a senior discount.  Hmmm 😉

Are you on Facebook?  If you are interested in blog follow ups, things that make me wonder, laugh or scream in frustration, join the more than 2,200 people who find me engaging or amusing: https://www.facebook.com/extremeblondemoments

Working Off Last Night’s Dinner

dietfoodjuliachild

I may have taken Julia Child’s words a bit too much to heart yesterday when I decided to skip my workout and give in to my craving for Chinese Takeout.  Hmmm

After gorging on a take-out feast of:

  • Shrimp Lo-Mein
  • Beef Fried Rice
  • Spicy Orange Beef
  • Lemon Chicken
  • Wor Won Ton Soup
  • Crispy Won Ton Strips & Fortune Cookies

I went to bed full of culinary regret and with a stomach that was upset and bloated from all of the salt, sugar and starchy carbs.  If it had tasted anything like I’d been envisioning I would have felt a little less guilty.  Instead I was faced with the need to immediately get to work erasing the damage one bad dinner choice had caused to my digestive system and self-esteem.

chinesetakeoutVenturing an educated guess, between the sugary sauces and dense carbs with an excessive amount of soy sauce, I imagine I ingested about 1500 highly unsatisfying calories at dinner last night.  GROSS!

Sadly, to erase that mistake completely, it would take:

  • 3 Hours of Aerobics @ 480 Calories per hour = 1440 Calories burned
  • 2 1/2 Hours of Bicycling at more than 10 MPH = 1475 Calories burned
  • 4 1/2 Hours Dancing @330 Calories per hour = 1485 Calories burned
  • 3 1/2 Hours of Heavy Yard Work @440 Calories per hour = 1540 Calories burned
  • 2 1/2 Hours on the Treadmill @5MPH = 1475 Calories Burned
  • 4 1/2 Hours Cleaning the House and Mopping Floors = 1485 Calories burned

Ug!  I don’t have the stamina to do any of those vigorous activities for the length of time it would take to completely work off dinner, but maybe I should try to force myself to learn a lesson.  LIKE THAT WOULD ACTUALLY HAPPEN!

So maybe I’ll try this instead:

  • I’ll spend an hour straightening up the house to burn off about 330 Calories;
  • Do an hour of penance on the treadmill at 3.5 MPH which will burn off 280 Calories;
  • Power through a 20 minute Kettlebell circuit which should burn off another 200 Calories or so; and
  • Finish with a 20 minute TRX session which could easily burn another 300 Calories

It only ends up burning about 1100 Calories, but will set my metabolism on fire and go a long way to purging the excess salt that’s making me feel so crappy.

In the end the cheat was so not worth it.  Something I will definitely have to spend some time thinking about with a glass of wine after I get done with my workout.  LMAO

Are you on Facebook?  If you are interested in blog follow ups, things that make me wonder, laugh or scream in frustration, join the more than 2,200 people who find me engaging or amusing: https://www.facebook.com/extremeblondemoments

Super Bowl (Yawn!) 50

I have less than zero interest in the teams playing in Super Bowl 50 in two weeks.

Usually I like a couple of the commercials but I can get commercial play by play and see them at my leisure courtesy of Twitter and video sites like YouTube.

Coldplay headlining the halftime show.  Nope.  ZERO INTEREST

coldplay-super-bowl-vitae-moderna-pepsi

It seems a lot of the intended viewers of the game agree with my less than enthusiastic opinion of the Super Bowl 50 Halftime Show.  Social Media exploded with disbelief, horror and outright mockery.  The fun continued when athletes, entertainers, late night talk show hosts and publications nationwide joined in on the joke that was the selection of Coldplay as Super Bowl 50 Halftime Show Headliner:

Some of my favorites:

  1. Coldplay is the clip-on-man-bun of bands (@dougbies – Twitter)
  2. Someone should run the concussion protocol on whoever picks Super Bowl halftime talent (@kenwheaton – Twitter)
  3. “shhh! shhh! everyone! Coldplay’s on!” that ought to go over well at the Super Bowl party. (@jasongay – Twitter)
  4. “Super Bowl fans, are you ready to rock? Hope not, because you’re getting Coldplay.” – Adweek
  5. “The one good thing you can say about the Coldplay choice is that they allow everyone to hurl their best insults with impunity.”  – Uproxx
  6. “Was Nickelback busy that weekend or something?” – San Francisco Gate

Reactions like those lead me to believe that the 2016 Super Bowl Halftime Show won’t garner anywhere near the number of viewers that Katy Perry’s Super Bowl performance in 2015 did.  She drew 121 million viewers, the highest viewership ever for the halftime performance according to Nielsen.  Bruno Mars’ performance in 2014 brought in 115 million, the second highest.

puppybowl

Is it any wonder the NFL quickly scrambled to assure viewers wouldn’t defect by the millions to watch a bunch of adorable puppies scamper about on Animal Planet’s Annual Puppy Bowl, by adding Beyoncé and Bruno Mars?

I’ve decided, for only the second time I can remember (the first time I was planning a funeral and writing a eulogy), to skip the game completely.  Looks like a perfect time to finally see the new Star Wars movie has presented itself.  Hmmm

Are you on Facebook?  If you are interested in blog follow ups, things that make me wonder, laugh or scream in frustration, join the more than 2,200 people who find me engaging or amusing: https://www.facebook.com/extremeblondemoments

 

I’m Afraid to Ride My Bike on the Streets

redroadbikeI’m as health and eco-conscious as the next girl, but the lack of awareness, attention, knowledge of right-of-way laws/general rules of the road and distracted driving I see exhibited by those who occupy the roads with me every day, has made me terrified to take to the streets on two wheels.

California has laws to protect the safety of motorists, bicyclists and pedestrians alike, but I am amazed daily by the number of violations that continue to happen as if no legislation exists because they go unnoticed by violators and law enforcement alike.

Think about it, in California (and many other states) it against the law to:

  • Hold any handheld communication device while driving
  • If you drive a Bus you can’t use a cell phone at all
  • If you are a new driver (anyone under 18) you can’t use a handheld OR handsfree cell phone
  • No texting while driving

Although these things are just as dangerous to other drivers, pedestrians and cyclists who share the road with them, it ISN’T written in the law that you can’t operate a vehicle and:

  • Eat or Drink
  • Talk/Sing/Argue with Passengers
  • Have a Pet Roaming the Car or Sitting in the Driver’s Lap
  • Perform Grooming Tasks (brush hair/teeth, shave, apply makeup, etc.)
  • Read (I’ve seen books, newspapers, maps and more!)
  • Use Navigation System
  • Watch Video Entertainment
  • Fiddle with Radio, CD, MP3, etc.

We all know that even more than this goes on when cars are being driven.  I know I am a perpetrator of some of the above, especially the singing 😉

I have a great bike and I’d love to ride it, in fact, when I’m feeling brave enough to hit the streets of my town, I’ve been known to ride it to the place where I get my messages (two miles from my house) and I’ve even ridden it to the gym about a mile and a half away.  But it seems more and more frequently, the news is reporting another car vs pedestrian or car vs cyclist incident on the streets of the cities near the place I call home.

If you think I am simplifying or exaggerating the risks taken when a pedestrian or cyclist hits the street, consider some of the following statistics cited in a 127 hour video-documented study by Monash University in Austrailia, where 54 car vs cyclist incidents were recorded: 2 collisions, 6 near-collisions and 46 other incidents.  That averaged out to a very scary incident every 2.5 hours, with the blame falling primarily on the drivers of the motor vehicles!

  • Prior to events, 88.9% of cyclists traveled in a safe and legal manner.
  • Vehicle drivers were at fault in 87% of the events, with more than 83% of drivers showing no post-event reaction.
  • The most frequent event was caused by drivers suddenly changing lanes, 40.7%.
  • 70.3% of events occurred at an intersection or intersection-related locations.
  • Cyclists who frequently looked over their shoulders had the highest situational awareness and the greatest ability to avoid collisions or near-collisions with cars.

In this country’s big cities, which have seen a growth in both population and traffic, campaigns have been made to get people to commute by foot or bike, but the same risks, and maybe even more, exist.  More people means more cars and more traffic, but infrastructure (streets, roadways, etc.) have not seen updates in decades and there just isn’t enough room for cars, cyclists, and pedestrians to co-exist.

In September 2013, California governor Jerry Brown signed a law requiring that motorists give cyclists at least 3 feet of clearance when passing.  That’s nice in theory, but the width of any existing bike lanes (which riders have a tendency to hug toward the car side of the lane to avoid bumpy/poorly maintained lanes, debris and slopes toward the curbs) and the need to move more traffic through narrower roads on more lanes than is safe, forces drivers to push into the lane of the driver to their left and could result in a vehicle vs vehicle collision.  Doesn’t seem like the 3 feet rule leaves enough space for ANYONE to be safe!

Consider some other safety issues posed by those who are supposed to share these crowded roadways:

  • Use of cell phones, smart phones, and MP3 players has resulted in a greater possibility than ever of injury to a cyclist or pedestrian who may have one or both of their ears covered by earphones/earbuds.  Their attention is focused down on texting or playing a handheld game while walking, listening to music at a high volume, or having a conversation instead of paying attention to the traffic noises or paying attention to the others who share the sidewalks/roadways;
  • Children are supposed to wear helmets while bicycling, skate boarding, etc., but many parents don’t enforce that rule in their homes;
  • Bicycle riders are instructed to stop and walk their bikes across intersections with cross walks (but most don’t), ride with traffic (not against), and to always ride in a safe and observant manner; and
  • Pedestrians are tasked to walk facing traffic, maintain alertness and obey traffic signals;

With all of these distractions, plus the addition of student drivers, drivers who don’t speak or read the language who may not understand what a sign like “Yield” means in practice, nervous or elderly drivers, and the list goes on, unless it’s a country lane where there are few, if any vehicles, my bike just may continue to gather dust in the garage.  Hmmm

Are you on Facebook?  If you are interested in blog follow ups, things that make me wonder, laugh or scream about in frustration, join the more than 2,000 people who find me engaging or amusing: https://www.facebook.com/extremeblondemoments