Mountain Views News, Combined Edition Saturday, August 17, 2019

MVNews this week:  Page 5


Mountain Views-News Saturday, August 17, 2019 

TABLE FOR TWO by Peter Dills

OUR SENIORS” By Joan Schmidt

Recently Senator 
Portantino’s held 
an outstanding and 
most informative 
“Panel and Mixer” 
for Seniors at 
Gardens, Duarte.


Panelists were Renee 
Rose, Deputy-in-
Charge of the Elder/
Dependent Adult 
Abuse Section, LA 
County DA’s Office; 
Joseph Nicchitta, 
Director, LA County 
Department of 
Consumer and 
Business Affairs, 
David Kochen, 
LA County, Adult 
Protective Services; and LA County Sheriff’s Department. After the Panelists, the Senator held a 
question-and answer session. They were many booklets with so much information. I will try to 
share some.


1. Warrant from the Internal Revenue Service: “This is final notice, the IRS is filing a legal 
warrant, Call 830-220-2074, Ext, 7. The IRS will NEVER contact by phone without writing you first. 
If concerned, contact IRS independently.
2. THE TECH SUPPORT SCAM: “Someone is trying to hijack your computer and steal your 
information…call 201-299-43i5 or press 1.” When you press 1, you are connected to a boiler room; 
a scammer poses as a Microsoft technician and will fix your computer for $299-$999. Never allow a 
phone caller to take over your computer! 
3. “Relief” From the Pain Management Center: “I am from Pain Management Center, work 
with your health insurance: “ PlasmaFlow…a device you attach to pain area” Medicare enrollees and 
their personal info (Medicare #). They send cheap version of neck/ knee brace, bill Medicare 1000’s 
of dollars! Avoid strangers’ calls re: your medical issues. Consult your doctor!
4. AMAZON BUSINESS OPPORTUNITY SCAM: “You can make money from home, up 
to $750 a day as Amazon affiliate”. Amazon NEVER robo-calls people to offer jobs. You spend 
thousands to set up a website!
5. Social Security Trouble. They call and say they’re from the Fraud Department. Contact the 
Social Security Administration directly.
6. THE JURY DUTY SCAM: “This is Ms. Rogers from the Courthouse. Our records indicate 
you were summoned three weeks ago. Unless you agree to pay $989, there will be a warrant for your 
arrest.” Hang up, alert police.
7. FACEBOOK COMPROMISE: They try to get your personal info. 
8. GOVERNMENT GRANTS SCAM: “You’re qualified to receive $14, 750.” This scam asks for 
9. PUBLISHERS CLEARING HOUSE. This happened to me! Call from Jamaica. I came in 
second, was going to receive $2000 a week for life, cash and a Mercedes, but had to wire $2998 for 
the shipping/ taxes on the car! 
10. One-Ring Call. Don’t call back! It’s an international number, will appear as a charge on your 
phone bill and most of the money goes to scammers!

More Help:

WISE & HEALTHY AGING: Non-profit, social services organization…Mission is to advance the 
dignity and quality of life of older adults through leadership, advocacy and high-quality innovative 


“Time in a Bottle” was a hit song by singer/
songwriter Jim Croce. A question I am 
asked almost weekly basis is “does wine get 
better as it spends more time in a bottle?” 
Answer is “yes… and no”. Philipe Jeandet 
is a professor at University of Reims 
Champagne-Ardenne in France, and was 
lucky enough to discover a shipwreck that 
had quite a cargo. Gold? No, champagne. 
Jeandet and his crew brought all 168 
bottles to the surface, and actually opened 
one on the spot. First tastes were fantastic. 
Given his knowledge of bubbles, his first 
guess was that they were at least 100 years 
old. The bottles had no boxes or labels, 
so after a few years of inspecting the 
corks and bottle engravings his group 
decided that the champagne was over 200 
years old. It’s home at the bottom of the 
Baltic Sea provided total darkness and a 
temperature of 35 degrees, aided by the 
compression of depth for the discovery, 
perfect for storing wine.

Your home wine cellar provides somewhat 
different conditions than the bottom of the Baltic Sea, so getting back to the question above, does wine 
get better with age? Yes, wines that are expensive or rare will get better. No, most wine is produced to 
drink now. In fact, up to 90% of wines don’t actually get any better with ageing. Many of us will let our 
wines breathe, especially the reds, and that’s fine. I suggest using a large wine glass with enough room 
to swirl your wine around, watch the legs on the glass, and drink. Many of my class “A” sommelier 
friends contend that if it’s not ready drink, it isn’t ready to buy. I agree!!

As for champagne, my storage procedure (for a single bottle or case) is to simply leave it on the 
floor of my closet, laying each bottle sideways. Champagne, for many, is only for special occasions, 
whereas for me it is a weekly toast. You should only put champagne in the refrigerator when you are 
ready to serve it. Once opened it will only last a few hours, so make sure you have plenty of help to 
drink it. My bottom line on the subject is to let the supermarkets and wine shops take care of the 
storage for you. They have the right equipment, and it is a heck of job (and a lot of money) to build 
your own wine cellar.

Wine of the Week: Check out the Cobblestone Sparking Wine at The Bottle Shop Wine store. I 
bought a bottle last week and really enjoyed it !! The Bottle Shop is located in Sierra Madre Ask Jay 
or Gustavo where it is on the shelf

Dining with Dills Sundays at 8 AM GO Country 105 FM 



[Nyerges is the author of such books as “Extreme Simplicity,” “Enter the Forest,” “Self-Sufficient 
Home,” and others. He can be reached at]

“Be here now.” Remember that mantra from one of the 60’s gurus? Though the 
slogan was widely used and spouted by weekend philosophers, Ram Dass’ simple 
quote was perhaps the most profound thing anyone could have said.

It can also be said as “Now is now,” or “Now is the only reality.”

I recall waking up early one Saturday morning. I was still in my early teens, and 
though I woke up in the early morning, it was also a time of simply waking up to 
my own awareness, waking up to the larger reality all around me, still largely not 

In my earliest years of childhood, I was always living in the moment. There was no oth-er option. I 
think, based on my own experiences, the perspective of reality of the child is probably very much like 
a dog, a cat, a wild animal, in the sense that the animal has no choice but to be very intensely in the 
moment. Survival requires that. The animal does not think about things like getting older, planning 
for the future, what will I wear tomor-row, how I look to my friends, how can I get more people to 
like me, what costume I will wear for Halloween, how can I make money during summer vacation, 
why does time go so slow, what will I be when I grow up, etc.

In other words, once I became aware of how the “adult world” operates, I lost my inno-cence of my 
own self as an autonomous and pure being in the universe.

 Somehow, I was no longer like the dogs and cats and deer and wild animals, focusing solely and 
intently on the moment. I was no longer focusing on “being here now.” I learned though my osmotic 
study of adults that it was important to think about the fu-ture, even the distant future, even the 
unlikely future.

And slowly but surely, like the grown-up adults of the “real world,” I found that I was more and more 
thinking about, and worrying about, and planning for, the distant fu-ture. I was not in the moment.

This is not to imply that adults in the adult world should not plan and prepare for the future. That 
would be silly to suggest. However, somehow, we need to do both. We need to think about the future, 
while living and being in the moment. We need bal-ance because we have become obsessively and 
dangerously imbalanced. Why else would so many people have found meaning in Ram Dass’ quote?

Part of the process of “being here now,” I have slowly discovered, is the idea that the journey is more 
important than the destination. How often have you driven on a long car ride, or been on a backpacking 
trek, and someone is constantly asking, “Are we there yet?” or “How much longer?” Since 
that mindset has not found a way to enjoy and learn from the journey, once it reaches the destination, 
it will begin to ask, “When are we going home?” 

It took me a long time and concerted effort to enjoy the journey. I remember one men-tor, Linda 
Sheer, who grew up in rural Appalachia, who used to tell me that I needed to quit focusing on getting 
somewhere in the woods. She slowly explained the process of being in the moment, little by little, 
and after awhile, it no longer mattered where I was, or where I thought I was going.

My childhood growing up in Pasadena was all about trying to do something “exciting” and “not boring.” 
I believed that other people, elsewhere, lived exciting lives and somehow I should find them 
and try to be like them. Gradually, as I actually met and interacted with some of the most “exciting” 
people in my orbit, I found their lives empty, hollow, mostly window-dressing. Not only did I further 
my efforts to “be here now,” but also to just “be myself,” and learn to be OK to be alone, or to be 
comfortable with any-one, anywhere, under any circumstances.

In “The Education of Little Tree,” this idea is described in a slightly different way. Little Tree’s grandmother 
explains that there is the body-mind and the spirit-mind. The body-mind deals with all the 
things of the world and the body (money, security, jobs, that sort of thing). The spirit-mind deals 
with trust, honesty, treating others as you would like to be treated, concern for others, and all the 
things we tend to think of as spiritually and morally-focused. Grandmother said that both minds 
should be developed in life, but some people only develop the body-mind. Then, when they die, since 
they can only take the spirit-mind with them, they don’t have much at all to carry them through in 
the hereafter. 

A conversation with my friend Monica made me think back on these topics of child-hood. We were 
discussing the concepts of “heaven” and “hell.” Sometimes, we have everything possible that we need 
and yet we are not happy, and want more, and want what our neighbors have. Such a person should 
be in a state of heaven, but their de-sire for more physical things keeps them in a state of hell. I know 
that’s not what reli-gions mean when they speak of heaven or hell, but my point is that when we are 
al-ways thinking about what happens after we die, we lose sight of the fact that our countless everyday 
decisions are actually forming our very destiny. We do better when we focus on each moment, 
what is right to do, what should be avoided, how we should treat people that minute. 

That is how I understood “be here now.” It may not be how Ram Dass meant it, but the idea that I 
should never lose sight of the fact that now is the only reality has stayed with me life-long.

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