Mountain Views News     Logo: MVNews     Saturday, July 23, 2016

MVNews this week:  Page A:7

Mountain Views-News Saturday, July 23, 2016 7THE GOOD LIFE THE GOOD LIFE 

Dear Savvy Senior,
What can seniors do to protect themselves fromidentity theft? My brother-in-law, who’s 77, recentlyhad his identity stolen and I want to make sure itdoesn’t happen to me.
Worried Relative 

Dear Worried, 
Great question! Each year around 17 millionpeople fall victim to identity theft, which happenswhen someone gets access to your Social Securitynumber, bank or credit card account number, or 
other identifying information and uses it to stealfrom you. Here are some free steps you can take toreduce your risks.

Guard your personal information: Never giveyour Social Security number, credit card number,
checking or savings account numbers to anyoneunless you initiate the contact. Also, do not carryyour Social Security card around in your wallet orpurse, and don’t carry around your Medicare cardeither unless you’re going to the doctor.

Get off mailing lists: Put a stop to preapprovedcredit-card offers, which is a gold mine for IDthieves. To do this visit orcall 888-567-8688 – they will ask for your SocialSecurity number and date of birth. You can stopother junk mail at, and reducetelemarketing calls at

Use strong passwords: To safeguard yourpersonal data on your smartphone or tablet don’tuse a password that’s easy to hack, like 1234 or 0000.
Also, make your computer passwords more than8 characters long, with uppercase and lowercaseletters, numbers, and symbols like # and %, anduse different passwords on different accounts. If it’shard to remember them, try a password managerservice like, or lastpass. 

Be wary of unknown emails: Never click onlinks in emails from strangers, or those that claimto be from the Social Security Administration,
IRS or other government agencies, or from yourbank, phone or credit card company warning ofa “problem.” This can result in identity-stealingmalware being installed on your computer. To 
protect your computer from malware, install 
antivirus software (see and forfree options) and set up automatic security updates 

I H8 8-LEGS 

 In regard spiders, it’s been a good summer. One dayearly last summer my mom and I were returningfrom errands when we were met in their drivewayby a guy who asked if we were having trouble withbrown widows. “Brown widows?” we asked. We’d 
only heard of black widows. Yes, he explained, ahuge wave of brown widows had hit the area and wewould soon be engulfed with these eight-legged pests.
Luckily for us, his company provided a wide variety ofmeasures to deal with these invaders. He whipped outan iPad and showed us charts and graphs to illustratethe different services we could take advantage of withhis limited time offer. He was a 

and full weekly scans.

Secure your mail: Empty your home mailboxquickly or buy a locked mailbox to deter thieves.
And mail outgoing payments from a U.S. PostalService mailbox or the post office, not from yourmore vulnerable home mailbox. 

Get safer credit cards: If you don’t already haveone, get an EMV chip credit card from your creditcard provider. They’re much more difficult forfraudsters to hack than magnetic strip cards.

Shred unneeded documents: Buy a crosscutpaper shredder so you can shred all unneededrecords, receipts, statements, preapproved creditoffers or other papers you throw out that has yourfinancial or personal information.

Monitor your accounts: Review your monthlybank and credit card statements carefully, and seeif your bank or credit card issuer offers free alertsthat will warn you of suspicious activity as soonas it’s detected. If they do, sign up for them or, which will do it for you for a smallfee. 

Watch your credit: Check your credit report 
at or call 877-3228228. 
You can receive one free report a yearfrom each of the three major credit bureaus(Equifax, Experian and TransUnion), so considerstaggering your request so you can get one freecopy every four months.

Set up security freezes: If you don’t plan to applyfor new credit, loans, insurance or utility services,
freeze your credit reports so crooks can’t open upnew accounts in your name. Rules vary by state,
but the $5 to $20 fee is waived if you’re 65 or older,
or show proof of past ID theft. Security freezes areset up at all three credit bureaus at, and 

Send your senior questions to: Savvy Senior, P.O.
Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070, or visit SavvySenior.
org. Jim Miller is a contributor to the NBC Todayshow and author of “The Savvy Senior” book.

The brown widows in the trash barrel were my 
first victims. I probably used more spray than I 
needed to, but I wanted to make sure those creeps 
were dead before I put my hands anywhere near 
that barrel again. The rest of the spiders in the 
fichus presented more of a problem. I couldn’t just 
go spraying poisonous stuff all over the yard. We 
have the neighbor’s cat who comes over and various 
other wildlife. I didn’t want them dead or sick just 
because of the spiders. Besides, I had a stinking 
suspicion that once I started on the widow war path 
there would literally be no end to it.

Where had these brown 

clean cut kid in a company polo

widows come from, and how 

shirt, and we listened politely to

are they different from black

his spiel. (Now that I’m 33 I call

widows? It seemed like all 

anyone in their 20’s a “kid.”)

the articles I read referenced 

“We’ll think about it,” we lied 

each other with the same 

to him after he finished and 

information. They’re from 

gave us a business card. “Gosh, 

Africa. Their first California 

what will people think up next

spotting was in Torrance a 

to try to come between us and

number of years ago. Their 

our cash?” I joked to my mom

body starts out with a white 

as soon as he was out of earshot. 

pattern that eventually fades 

But I wasn’t laughing at all the

into a dusty gray. Their legs

following week.

look striped at the joints. Their 

My husband and I are often

behavior is different from black 

guilty of neglecting our plants,

widows in that they do not limit

so I decided to cut back a fichus 

themselves to undisturbed 

vine that constantly threatens 

places (Yeah, tell me about it!).

to take over our yard. After a 

But not to worry. Although

couple hours I had filled a trash

brown widows’ venom is just

barrel with clippings and was

as deadly drop for drop as a

feeling very industrious. Then 

black widow, they are not able

I saw it! The tell-tale red hour 

to deliver the full-force punch


HAPPY BIRTHDAY! ….July Birthdays 

Nina Bartolai, Mary Lou Caldwell, Louise Neiby, Eunice Banis, Betty Hansen, 
Christine Durfort, Shahrzad Azrani, Jeanne Borgedahl, Janet Cox, Dorothy 
Montgomery, Bess Pancoska, Janet Swanson, Linda Thunes, Barbara Watson, Pat 
Alcorn, Karma Bell, Alice Clark, Dorothy Jerneycic, and Betty Dos Remedios. 
* To add your name to this distinguished list, please call the paper at 626.355.2737. YEAR of birth 

not required but you must be over 60. 

ACTIVITIES: Unless listed differently, all activities are at the 
Hart Park House (Senior Center) 222 W. Sierra Madre Blvd., Sierra Madre

 YWCA San Gabriel Valley - Intervale Senior Cafe 

Seniors 60 years of age and up can participate in the YWCA Intervale daily lunch program held 

at the Hart Park House Senior Center. Meals are served Monday through Friday at 12:00 pm 

and participants are encouraged to arrive by 11:45 am. Meals are a suggested donation of $3.00 

for seniors 60 and over or $5.00 for non-senior guests. Daily reservations are necessary, space is 

limited. Please reserve your lunch by calling 626-355-0256. 

Hawaiian and Polynesian Dance Class: Every Tuesday morning from 10:00 - 11:00am. Join 

instructor Barbara Dempsey as she instructs you in the art of hula. 

Bingo: Every Tuesday beginning at 1:00pm. Cards are only $0.25 each! Everyone is welcome to 

join. May be cancelled if less than 5 people. 

Free Blood Pressure Testing: 2nd Tuesday of the month from 11am to 12pm. No appt. is 


Brain Games: Thursday, June 16, 10:30 - 11:30am. Improve your memory and strengthen your 

brain. Activities facilitated by senior volunteers. 

Free Legal Consultation: Wednesday, June 15th from 10:30am to Noon. Attorney Lem 

Makupson is available for legal consultation. He specializes in Family Law, Wills, Trusts, Estates, 

and Injury. Appointment are required by calling 626-355-7394. 

Sing-A-Long: Music brings joy to the soul. Come join us Thursday, June 9, 10:30 - 11:30am. No 

music skills needed! This month: “Silly Folk Songs”. 

Balance Class: Monday, June 20, 11:00 - 11:45am with Paul Hagen. A variety of balance exercises 

are practiced; all ability levels are encouraged and welcomed. 

Chair Yoga: Mondays and Wednesdays from 11:00 to 11:45 am. A suggested donation of $5 at one 

of the classes is requested, but is not required. 

Case Management: Meets the 2nd Thursday of the month. Case Management services are 

provided by the YWCA and provide assistance in a variety of areas. Appointments are required 

and can be scheduled by calling the HPH Office at 626-355-7394. 

Birthday Celebrations: Every second Thursday of the month at the Hart Park House. The free 

birthday cake is provided by the Sierra Madre Civic Club. 

Game Day: Every Thursday starting at 12:00pm. (Please note the time change.) A regular group of 

seniors play poker. Other games available for use. 

Free Strength Training Class: Every Friday from 12:45pm to 1:30pm with Lisa Brandley. The 

class utilizes light weights for low impact resistance training. All materials for the class are 


Senior Club: Every Saturday at the Hart Park House Senior Center. Brown bag lunch at 11:30am. 

Club meeting at noon. Bingo 12:30-3:30pm. Annual Membership is only $10.00. 

Lunch and Learn - Thursday, June 23 - 12:30 - 1:00pm 

 Did you know 1 out of 5 people 65 or older is eligible for a SilverSneakers membership! This 
active adult wellness program is offered through many Medicare plans. Increase your energy 
and your overall well-being is possible with SilverSneakers. A representative from Healthways 
SilverSneakers will give a brief presentation about this wonderful benefit and find out if your 
health plan offers the SilverSneakers Fitness program. If you are interested in having lunch with 
the Senior Lunch Café before the presentation please call 626-355-0256 to make a reservation. 


Senior Excursion: Queen Mary

(Long Beach) 

Date: Thursday, August 25, 2016Time: 9:00am – 4:00pmMeeting location: Hart Park HouseCost: $55 (includes lunch)
Level of walking: High 

Limted space available! You’ve heard the stories, the myths and legends, now get the straight scoop onthe Queen Mary. The Glory Days Tour is full of interesting anecdotes, fun facts and compelling truestories. Participants will enjoy lunch at the Promenade Café. Entrée choices are: Queen Burger, grilledchicken ciabatta sandwich, Queen Mary Club Sandwich, and Caesar salad with chicken. Dessert andbeverage are also included. Please call the Hart Park House to make you meal selection. 

Participants should bring money for souvenirs. For more information call the Hart Park House at626-355-7394.

glass on the underbelly of a big,
dusty black widow that was casually suspended nearthe top of the trash barrel. Since I had only filled thebarrel a few minutes ago, I would’ve noticed it. How 
did it get there and build a web so fast? The spiderwas just sitting there like it was in its right mind, nottucked away in the safety of a crevice, but totally outin the open, as if taunting me. “Nah Nah! Look where 
I am!” With great trepidation I leaned in for a closer 
look. What I had first mistaken for dust was actuallya different body color than the typical black sheen of ablack widow. Was this a black widow? I peered over 
it again. The hour glass, body shape, and legs lookedlike a black widow, so I figured that’s what it must be. I 
looked around for something to kill it with.

As I was searching for a suitable weapon,
something else caught my eye. A second spider withthe characteristic hour glass shape on its undersidewas sitting in a different part of the opened trash can.
Great, now I’ve got to kill two widows! Wait, here’s 
another! And another! In fact, they weren’t just inthe trash barrel, but all over the stray clippings on theground. I cautiously approached the fichus vine anddiscovered that it was infested with them! Did any 
fall on me while I was clipping away at it? My skin 
started to crawl. 

I looked for insecticide, but only found a feeblebottle of ant spray. No, this situation called for 
something more heavy duty. I went to Arnold’s and 
found a big bottle of Spider Killer, “For Black Widowsand Brown Recluses” the canister read. I bought two. 

of the toxin. (I’d rather not find 
out for myself.)

Wouldn’t it be nice if there were some 
environmentally friendly way to get rid of them? I 
wondered what ate brown widows. Apparently Iwasn’t the first person to have this idea, and quicklydiscovered that many people had entered that samesearch online. In little time I found myself falling inlove with blue mud dauber wasps. These creatures 
are amazing! They find their widow (black or brown),
paralyze it, and air lift it back to their nest where theylay an egg on it that will eventually consume thespider from the inside out. One spider per egg, so 
they need a lot of widows! There are numerous videos 
of people discovering used nests stuffed with eatenout spider carcasses. Creepy to find in your home,
but if you hate spiders, you’ll love these wasps. I saw 
that other people had the same idea. Many postedquestions like, “How can I get mud dauber waspsto come to my yard?” and “Can I order mud dauberwasps?”

Probably the worst time in our spider saga happenedwhen we discovered countless egg sacks lining the rowof bricks along our outdoor planter. Let’s see, each 
egg sack contains hundreds of eggs, and if each babyfemale spider goes on to make egg sacks of her own...
You can see where this is going. I wish I could say thatwe had a spider apocalypse and wiped them all out forgood. Although we haven’t seen as many around lately,
I know that they’ll come back when the conditions areright. I just hope I have enough Spider Killer. 

Mountain Views News 80 W Sierra Madre Blvd. No. 327 Sierra Madre, Ca. 91024 Office: 626.355.2737 Fax: 626.609.3285 Email: Website: