Mountain Views News, Sierra Madre Edition [Pasadena] Saturday, August 26, 2017

MVNews this week:  Page A:10

Mountain Views-News Saturday, August 26, 2017 10 THE GOOD LIFE THE GOOD LIFE 

Dear Savvy Senior,
My elderly father gets over 100 pieces of junk mailevery week, and I just discovered that he’s given awaynearly $5,000 over the past few months to many of thesolicitors that mail him this junk. Can you offer any tipson how can I stop this?
Irritated Son 

Dear Irritated, 
Millions of older Americans get bombarded with
unwanted junk mail these days, including “mail fraud”
schemes that you and your dad need to be particularly
careful of. Here’s are some tips that may help. 

Mail Fraud Alert 
While junk mail comes in many different forms –
credit card applications, sweepstakes entries, magazine
offers, coupon mailers, donation requests, political
fliers, catalogs and more – the most troublesome type
is mail fraud, which comes from con artists who are 
only trying to take your money.
Mail fraud can be tricky to detect because there are
many different types of schemes out there that may
seem legitimate. Some of the most common mail
scams targeting seniors today are phony sweepstakes,
foreign lotteries, free prize or vacation scams, fake
checks (see, donation requests from
charities or government agencies that don’t exist, get-
rich chain letters, work-at-home schemes, inheritance 
and investment scams, and many more.
If your dad is getting any type of junk mail that is asking
for money in exchange for free gifts or winnings, or if
he’s receiving checks that require him to wire money,
you need to call the U.S. Postal Inspector Service at
877-876-2455 and report it, and then throw it away.
Unfortunately, once a person gets on these mail fraud
lists, also known as “suckers lists,” it’s very difficult to
get off. That’s because these criminals regularly trade
and sell mailing lists of people who they believe to be
susceptible to fraud, and they won’t remove a name
when you request it.
Knowing this, a good first step to help protect your
dad is to alert him to the different kinds of mail fraud 
and what to watch for. The U.S. Postal Inspection
Service can help you with this. They offer a list of
the different mail fraud schemes at PostalInspectors. 


I am sorry to be guilty, yet again,
of recycling an old article. But 
I barely remember it, which 
means you won’t either! So with 
that, enjoy!

Ah, summer, the most wonderful time of the 
year! And summer just wouldn’t be summerwithout a family vacation! This year our vacationswere fun and memorable without being scary,
like the time my Mom, Grandma, and I went toMichigan about 20 years ago.

We were there for two or three weeks. The 
time not spent going to various touristy places


was filled with family visits and

(this isn’t that uncommon in

get-togethers. At one point, too

Michigan, but it still didn’t add

many guests had used up all the

to the ambiance). The knobs 

available beds at my aunt’s farm

on the TV were missing and

house where we were staying.

the beds were different sizes. It 

This meant that Mom and I had 

wasn’t as if one bed was a king

to find a motel until the crowd 

and the other was a queen, they 

cleared out and we could get

were totally different designs,

our beds back. So Mom and I 

as if they had been found at a

left Gran at the farm house and 

yard sale earlier that day. But 

looked for lodging for the night.

what was most disturbing was

Already you can tell this is going

the door behind one of the 

to be bad. 

beds. I can forgo TV and even

Based on the advice from a 

a shower, but having Norman

relative, Mom and I decided to 

Bates come in and murder us 

spend the night at the “Airport

during the night in the middle

Motel” in Sebewaing. Keep

of Sebewaing was just too

in mind that this was before 


the days of cell phones, GPS

Luckily, Mom and 

navigation, and other helpful

I have no shame when it 

devices that make life more 
livable. All we had was the address, a map book,
and the smiling endorsement from our relatives as
we drove out into the boonies. 

At the time, Sebewaing was mostly cornfieldswith a double lane highway running through it anddeep ditches on both sides. Needless to say, it gets

Another option is to see if your dad would bewilling to let you sort through his mail before heopens it so you can weed out the junk. You may wantto have the post office forward his mail directly to youto ensure this. 
If your dad feels compelled to donate to certaincharities, ask him to let you check them out first tomake sure they’re legitimate. You can do this at charitywatchdog sites like and Give. 

Reduce Junk Mail 
While scam artists aren’t likely to take your dad’sname off their mailing lists, most legitimate mail-
order businesses will. To do this, start with the Direct 
Marketing Association, which offers a consumer opt-
out service at This won’t eliminate allhis junk mail, but it will reduce it. The opt-out serviceis $2 for 10 years if you register online, or $3 by mail.
Then, to put a stop to the credit card and insuranceoffers he gets, call the consumer credit reportingindustry opt-out service at 888-567-8688, and followthe automated prompts to opt him out for either fiveyears or permanently. Be prepared to give his SocialSecurity number and date of birth. You can also dothis online at If you choosethe permanent opt-out, you’ll have to send a form inthe mail. 
You should also make sure your dad’s home and cellphone numbers are registered with the National DoNot Call Registry (, 888-382-1222), tohelp cut down on telemarketing calls. 

Send your senior questions to: Savvy Senior, P.O. Box5443, Norman, OK 73070, or visit
Jim Miller is a contributor to the NBC Today show andauthor of “The Savvy Senior” book. 

darker than the inside of a cow at night! All we 
could see were the yellow lines on the road until atlast we reached our destination --the Airport Motel.
By “motel,” I mean six rooms separated by an officein the middle. There were maybe one or two othercars in the lot, and the man at the desk was creepy.
This being 20 years ago, I don’t remember whatspecifically was creepy about him, but there musthave been something for me to remember that.

We got our room and tried to forget thecreepiness of the whole situation, but it was difficult.
The faucet and shower ran muddy reddish sulfuric-
smelling water whenever you first turned it on

comes to things like this, andwere perfectly fine with returning our key to thesurprised, but still creepy, manager. The long driveback through the cornfields was still as dark andscary as it was the first time, but at least we knewwhere we were going --and it wasn’t the AirportMotel! Thank goodness for Best Western! 


HAPPY BIRTHDAY! ….August Birthdays

Bill Nelson, Karlene Englert, Juanita Fernandez, Jeanette Francis, Joseph Kiss, John 
Luke, Jacquie Pergola, Maury Whitaker, Pat Miranda, Phyllis Chapman, Jerry Burnett, 
Margaret Aroyan, Phyllis Burg, Beverly Clifton, Rosemary Morabito, Susan Poulsen, 
Dorothy Quentmeyer, Genevieve Stubbs, Miep Tulleners, Joy Barry, Ellie Baudino, 
Marcia Bent, Daryls Brechwald, Joan Spears, Ruth Torres, Jane Zamanzadeh. * 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 

Hawaiian & Polynesian Dance Class: Every Tuesday morning from 10a.m.
to 11a.m. Join instructor Barbara Dempsey as she leads you in the art of Hula. 
Bingo Time: Every Tuesday beginning at 1:00p.m. Cards are only $0.25 each! Everyone is welcome
to join. May be canceled if less than five people. 

Free Blood Pressure Testing: 2nd Tuesdays of the month from 11a.m. to 12p.m. No appt. is 
Brain Games - *New Activity*: Join us on Thursday July 20th, at 10:30a.m. to 11:30a.m for
Scattergories. A creative thinking game by naming objects within a set of categories. Everyone
is welcome, no experience needed. Great way to strengthen your brain and make new friends.
Activities are facilitated by Senior Volunteers. 

Free Legal Consultation: Wednesday, August 16th from 10:30a.m. to Noon. Attorney Lem
Makupson is available for legal consultation. Specializing in Family Law, Wills, Trusts, Estates, and
Injury. Appointments are required by calling 626-355-7394. 
Senior Club: Meets every Saturday at the Hart Park House Senior Center. Brown Bag Lunch at 

Chair Yoga: Mondays & Wednesdays from 11:00 to 11:45a.m. with Paul Hagen. 3rd Mondays of each
month, a variety of balance exercises are practiced.All ability levels are encouraged and welcomed! 

*A suggested donation of $5 at one of the classes is requested, but is not required. 

Case Management: Case Management Services are provided by the YWCA and offer assistance in
a variety of areas. Appointments are required and can be scheduled by calling the Hart Park House
Office at 626-355-7394. 

Birthday Celebrations: Every 2nd Thursday of the month at the Hart Park House, share some free
birthday cake provided by the Sierra Madre Civic Club. 

Game Day: Every Thursday starting at 12:00p.m. Come join this group of Seniors in their poker
game. Other games are offered to all. 

Free Strength Training Class: Fridays from 12:45p.m. to 1:30p.m. with Lisa Brandley. This energetic
class utilizes light weights for low impact resistance and training conditioning. All class materials are


Gondola Getaway in Long BeachDate: Friday, August 25thTime: 9:15a.m. to 2:30p.m.
Cost: $35.00 (Not including Lunch)
Gondola Getaway brings old world charm and a thousand year old tradition to

Southern California. Authentic Venetian Gondolas gently cruise the enchanting canals and waterwaysof Naples Island, near the resort area of Belmont Shore in Long Beach. It’s a unique way to enjoy thearchitecture of Naples Canals and its beautiful homes and yachts. The cruise is approximately one hour.
Lunch is on your own around 2nd Street, Belmont Shore District with many dining options and shops.
Level of Walking: Medium; please call the Hart Park House for reservations at 626-355-7394. 

Draw from History with Kt Boyce - Free Art Class 

Monday, August 28th at 12:30p.m. – 1:30p.m. at Hart Park HouseJoin us as we use color pencils to learn color theory and value. Portraits of Sierra Madre’s heroe are ready for youto shade and bring them back to life as we enjoy learning about their history. Kt will read the bios of Geronimoand Lucky Baldwin and a few others. Participants will reflect on their legacy, how things have changed, andothers stayed the same in Sierra Madre. All art materials and supplies will be provided freely, however spaces 
are also limited. Reservations are required to save your spot! Please call the Hart Park House 626-355-7394. 



 August 16th at 1:00p.m. 

Former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher (Meryl Streep) reflectson her life and career as she finally prepares to dispose of the belongings ofher later husband. Daughter of a Grantham grocer, she successfully brokethrough a double-paned glass ceiling of gender and class. Thatcher becamethe first female prime minister of the United Kingdom and remained as suchfor 11 years, until declining popularity forced her to resign. Run time: 1h45m. 

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