Sunday, September 19, 2021


Life's little annoyances take on increasing aggravation with each year I become older and need to adjust to unwelcome physical limitations.  Perhaps some of you have found this to be true for yourself as well.

Unexpected, unusual household problems arise I've noticed ever since I've been on my own in this house, dedicated to living in place rather than in a retirement facility.  The most recent problem was the other day when I was retrieving my mail.  I discovered my mailbox detached on one side causing that box to hang down haphazardly.   That never happened before when my husband was living.  Time to search for a needed screw, but ultimately I had to drag out the hammer.  Resolving some problems easier said than done.

Would that all of the problems that come up could be so readily resolved, even if I couldn't find a screw and had to settle on a nail.  Hope that new nail instead of a screw holds the box well.  Perhaps the smooth nail will more readily loosen than a screw would.  

If that wasn't enough, I had to re-install the screw on the other side of the box, too, which suddenly released causing me to nearly drop the whole box as I was affixing the first side -- also, almost throwing me off balance to tumble down.  So far, I think I've successfully anchored the mailbox, but for how long?  Time will tell since the postal person likely won't be handling my mailbox gingerly when opening each day.

I chuckled to myself later thinking how this event could have resulted in another one of those weird insurance company descriptions they sometimes report as reasons for life insurance payout claims.  Perhaps the account would read like one of the following:

"Claimant's death attributed to fall, striking head on edge of concrete entry way while attempting to re-hang mailbox."   

"Claimant died when struck in the head by mailbox she was trying to re-hang."  

"Claimant died when falling on hammer handle that impaled her open mouth and throat throttling her."

Can you come up with a more bizarre one?

* * *

Democracy survives assault ..... California's 286 million dollar wasteful expenditure of our tax monies the squandering Republican political party foisted on our citizens with the recent attempted special recall election of our Governor Gavin Newsom was unsuccessful by a large margin.  He'll be up for re-election when his regular term ends next year -- a regular election for which they should have waited.  

Thanking supporters voting "No" to recall Newsom, he focused on what this election really said "Yes" to as a state since the re-callers were mostly anti these items as reported in his speech in "The Week" magazine: 

We Californians said "Yes" to:

"science...vaccines...ending this pandemic.* 

"people's right to vote without fear of fake fraud or voter suppression.

"women's fundamental, constitutional right to decide for herself what she does with her body, her fate, her future.

"diversity, inclusion, pluralism.

"to all those things that we hold dear as Californians, and I would argue as Americans."

Newsom continued "Economic justice, social justice, racial justice, environmental justice, our values where California has made so much progress.  All of those things were on this ballot.

He said voters rejected "division, the cynicism, so much of the negativity that's defined our politics in this country over the course of so many years."

Newsom called on Californians to "disregard false separateness" and remember "we have so much more in common" than "we give ourselves credit for."

Correcting our state's recall election process may require three changes, I think.  One will be to increase the number of required signatures necessary to initiate a recall election.  

A second change would negate allowing a candidate receiving a percentage of votes far less than the combined majority from becoming our Governor as currently could occur if the majority voted to recall our Governor.  (This problem described in my previous post.)   

The expected solution will also be to designate the lieutenant governor, who is ordinarily the second in command of California's executive offices, to assume the top office in the event of future governors being recalled.

* * *

Phone Scams ..... I stopped answering my phone for quite some time but recently have resumed answering a few calls for various reasons.  I notice most calls are recorded messages which I hang up on after the first couple words.  Then, there are those ever-present scams.  Here are a few of the most recent scams I've received.

One scam was a recorded message that I've received several times seemingly from different locations or numbers.   The caller claims to be from Amazon's customer service alerting me to a thousand dollar plus charge against my account (assumes I have one, I guess).  I ended the call at that point.  Additional phony information is given in the rest of their message, followed by instructions to follow in order to address the matter as I recall listening to months ago when I received the first call. 

Another scam was with a real live person.  He said he was a neighbor living up the street and gave a house number where he said he lived (I was pretty sure that number was non-existent, plus would have been down the street from where I lived, not up the street).  He added that he and son had painted my neighbor's house across the street which I did recall actually being done and said I had talked to him then.  I said I didn't recall such a conversation.

He elaborated, saying I had talked to him and to call later in the year.  Again, I said I didn't remember such a conversation.  He said in a cajoling manner, that I talked to him of having my house trim painted, that he had even given me a flyer.  I said, I never talked to anybody about painting the trim on my house.  He said nothing and abruptly hung up.  (Note:  my neighbors reported to me later their handyman, not this caller, painted their house.)

I wonder if this type scammer may focus on older people they think may have memory problems,  possibly even have dementia, who will also be polite, and maybe succumb to their friendly overture?

A third scam I just remembered was the phone call from a young-sounding male voice greeting me with "Hi, Grandma!".  I ended the call without responding as I always do since they've been coming periodically for several years.  One earlier call was "Hi Grandpa" thinking I was male, I guess.

I recall my hairdresser years ago, shortly after I received my first "Grandma" call, telling me about customers she characterized as intelligent as having fallen for this scam.  They had even rejected their bank teller's admonitions to not send money without further checking.  They persisted in withdrawing a large sum anyway, subsequently sending their unretrievable money to the scammer.  

Additional "stranger" calls come from contractors, solicitors wanting all sorts of donations, other commercial types.  I simply don't do business with any phone callers though some few may be legitimate.  I don't waste my time listening to familiar pitches, am not polite, and simply interrupt them by cutting them off.  My fantasy would be to eliminate all these scam calls and calls from strangers.   

I'm sometimes hard-pressed to view the benefits of some technologies as outweighing the negatives, but once they're in use, there's no going back.   Guess I'll return to not answering my phone again unless I recognize the number. 


  1. Re the mailbox saga, I'm sure a lawyer could come up with even weirder terminology. "Claimant was repairing the postal ingress facility" perhaps.

    We get regular scam calls, mainly purporting to be from Amazon Prime, or "your internet provider" or "BT Technical Department". We had a new one the other day "Your bank security department".

    It sounds like your recall election was a disgraceful waste of public money, as you say.

    1. That sounds about right from the insurance company, Nick.
      Actually, it just dawned on me that instead of claimant who would be the person filing the claim to receive my life insurance the statement probably would read "The insured...". Oh, well!

      I haven't had any calls claiming to be from "your bank" that I know of. Guess that's a phone scam yet to come.

      Yes, the recall election was an absolute waste of taxpayer money, I'm still angry about.

  2. Yes, life's little annoyances have indeed taken on increasing aggravation with each year I become older and I too have had to adjust to unwelcome physical limitations. It is however no use fussing over it as nothing can be done about it and I simply have to get used to the inconveniences. People who care enough do not mind my immobility and in a strange way, the lockdown has helped too. With ease of restrictions, friends are proposing meeting at my home or at some convenient place for me and I should shortly be starting to move about a bit albeit with minimum walking and with support.

    1. Like you, I think there's not much point in wasting energy fussing about any limitations aging may impose. Glad friends have been able to visit you in your home and to hear you'll soon be moving about a bit soon after the confinement to which this pandemic has condemned us.

  3. Congrats on the failure of the recall attempt. It was such a relief, even here in Arkansas. I agree with him on what the No vote represented.
    Totally get those age related annoyances. Just yesterday for some reason I suddenly had no water pressure in my kitchen only. I removed the aerator but it looked fine. Then I thought about changing out my faucet and I realized that though I had put that one in 15 years ago, I couldn't physically do it today. Compromised and bought a new aerator and it works fine. Phew.

    1. I, too, was relieved that Californians voted so strongly against this recall. I hope we gave many in the rest of the nation hope that some sanity is being brought back to government, that we do have some positive thinking and acting leaders whether or not we agree with everything some of our better ones do.

      Aren't you lucky the water issue was only your aerator. It surely is frustrating when what was once a task we could do, now takes longer or has become one we can't even do.

  4. Well done on the recall but an awful waste of tax payer funds and there should be a penalty of some kind.

    Yes, scam calls are hitting my cell phone, but like you, I either hangup or ignore them if not a recognizable number.

    We have a federal election coming up here and it's terrrifying as the Liberals and Conservatives are neck and neck in the polls. Erin O'Toole the leader of the Cons. is openly Trumpish. Women's rights, once again, on the table. Why oh why of why are women the fall guys of these monsters?


    1. Hope your upcoming election goes the way to favor those wanting rights for all including women. So many countries around the world with groups wanting to subjugate women. Seems a never ending challenge to seek equality.

  5. Good luck with the mailbox. I hope it is well anchored and stays in place for many years. This whole system of recalling elected officials you decide you don't like part way through their term always seems odd to me. Surely the next election is the place to turf them out if you are dissatisfied. Obviously, in large measure the citizens of California thought so too. Now when Trump was in office, a recall on the second day would have been good!!

  6. I would have hired a handyman to install a new mailbox. As for the grandma call, I got several within the last 10 years. Always hilarious, because my grandson is only a kid, why would he sound like a man????

    1. I thought about getting a new mailbox but didn't want the hassle of shopping for one. I had looked for one a few years ago when my son was here but didn't see any I liked.

  7. I worry almost daily about my mother--who has Alzheimer's--falling for a scam by answering her cellphone. I warn her repeatedly NOT TO ANSWER ANY CALL FROM A NUMBER SHE DOES NOT KNOW. I have notified all her doctors and the pharmacy to call me with pertinent info rather than her.

    The day is not far away when she won't be able to have her cell phone anymore. We'll replace it with a Life Alert type system.

    1. That would be a worry. My mother’s poor vision was such that if cell phones had been in existence when she was still living she wouldn't have been able to see the caller numbers. I had to get her a special large button and numbers phone that the phone company provided for vision impaired. There weren't any emergency call buttons then either, but fortunately she was mentally alert. Also, we didn't receive all these recorded messages, few sales pitches and I don't recall hearing of such scam calls we’ve been deluged with since digital came into use. What has our society come to! Hope your Mom is able to avoid such phone abuse.

  8. We are getting repeated calls about our cars warrantee. Once George told him the years of our vee-hickles, 95 and 2005, they abruptly hung up on him forllowed by 17 more calls. LOL

    1. Oh, I get those, too! I have never talked to them ‘cause I’m happy with my insurer plus they wouldn't insure my 1999 car I will keep ‘by preferred choice ‘til I die. I also get pitches that are prefaced with references to energy utilities, then benefits and loans for whatever there business project is. Some of these offers can be okay for anyone who will be around long enough — many years — to reap the savings — or for whom that doesn't matter but doesn't work for me. I wish they’d stop calling after a few rejections ‘cause my response isn’t going to change.

  9. I let the spam calls go to my recorded message. That way if it's a legitimate call they'll leave a message. For the last two weeks I wrote down the #'s and couldn't believe I got 24 and all different !!! (Only 2 proved to on the up-and-up !)