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There's so much bad news about Covid that I forced myself to focus on a light topic to overcome the funk. Perhaps the naive part of me thinks laughing in the face of the virus will make it flee.

Deciphering personalized plates certainly makes the miles go by faster on the highway When my aunt visited us from England, she was fascinated with the creativity displayed on US plates. She’d interpret them with her very English sensibility and we’d all laugh at the end result. Time would fly.

Through the years we have had or considered these plates.

HRCNEIL: to honor toddler Neil’s hurricane like speed.

CMNSENS and NONSENS: to commemorate the banality and the hilarity of what our last name could offer.

NTGENCE: for our company, Entigence. We had this for years when a driver pulled up next to us at a stop light, rolled down her window and hollered, “What does that mean?!”

Our interest in plates and food intersected a couple of weeks ago in the most unexpected way.

Our search for hole-in-the-wall gems took us to Tacos El Gordo near the border with Tijuana. The one-hour wait to pick up tacos was well worth it. Then, we made our way to Hodad’s in Ocean Beach in San Diego. Both were incredibly good. Gordo has redefined our bar for tacos and Josh nearly dislocated his jaw trying to get his mouth around a Hodad‘s double-burger. It was that gigantic!

Hodad‘s has an impressive collection of personalized plates from every state in the union. Here is a sampling of the floor-to-ceiling display.

IMFLIPIN and WASS UP could define my baseline states.

PRESHES, SINCITY and HOT RYD...very cool.

For my contemporaries who started their tech journey with an ancient language that once ruled the world, NO COBOL sure brought back repressed memories! And how creative is black widow with the heart.

As I inch towards retirement, I’m thinking my next plate needs to say WNT2CHL. If you had to distill your life into seven characters, what would your FUNPLTE say?

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