Monday, April 25, 2011

The Second Coming (aka the Legend of Con Revisited… again and again and again)

Have I mentioned how eternally blessed I am? My husband is amazing… very male, but still amazing. My daughter is happy to be my friend, to spend time with me, and bead with me. My grandson is my joy. My dog pees on the carpet. Okay so every sunny day must have gnats – those would be the dog and my baby talking, pistol slinging grandmother.

My mother had been told dinner was between 2 and 3pm, it was her choice as to whether my grandmother would be coming. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not that I didn’t want her to come, it’s that she’s 91 and has good days and bad, and often spends the remainder of an afternoon in bed because her back is basically broken and she’s in deep pain. My mother is an excellent judge of what my grandmother can and can’t tolerate. So yesterday morning Ducky was informed by my grandmother, my mom had only just told her at 8am they would be coming to dinner. What the heck is the deal, it’s not like she had plans. The ham went into the oven at 12:30 at 350° and came out at 2:30 (20 minutes after it should have and the center was still cool) mom and grandma showed up at 5 minutes to 3. Next year I am telling her dinner is between 1 and 2 and not tell her I’m serving at 2:30.

So we’re sitting there eating dinner and my grandma turns to Psam and ask her if she saw the article about her in the paper? Mom, Ducky and I all roll her eyes (I’m silently curious as to how much the story will change.)

Several months ago my Grandmother received a phone call from the “Niagara Falls” police department needing a bond to release her grand daughter for attempting to smuggle drugs over the border into Canada. Does my grandmother call someone in the family to verify? No, she ask if she can talk with her grand daughter. Sure, no problem.

“Becky, are you okay?”
“Yes, grandma, I’m fine, how did you know it was me?”
“I recognized your voice in the background.

The “Officer” gets back on the line and tells my grandmother that they need her to wire $4500 to them to secure her release and bond. Now this next direction from the “Officer”, should have sent bells ringing, but no nada, not my grandma, “Don’t contact your local police, we’ll deal with the issues here, it’s out of their jurisdiction.”

So my grandmother, accompanied by the armed idiot that lives down the street from her, go to her bank and retrieve a cashier’s check for the requested $4500 and go to the local drug store where she can wire it off. You did note that the idiot down the street was armed right? And that he walked into the bank with my grandma? Right? Armed? Riiiight.

Thankfully the wise man at the drug store alerted my grandmother to the fact it was a scam. Had she called to verify that her granddaughter was missing? In Canada? At home? No. At this point my grandmother and the armed idiot that lives down the street from her go home and my grandmother swears to not tell my mother. But someone did and my mom came into tell me. Ack!!

Fast forward to Sunday: Ducky and I go to do my grandmother’s wood and in the middle of one of my numerous treks from the wood shed to her wood chest in the living room she proceeds to tell me her story. At the end she tells that she would have called me “because you are knowledgeable about these things”, but you were at work. Folks, take my word for it that has never stopped my grandma from calling me for something frivolous before.

“Grandma, why didn’t you call mom?”
“Because you know more about this stuff than she does.”
“Excuse me? She’s always been your go to girl. That’s ridiculous.”
“Well, she would have yelled at me.” (by the way folks this is before I knew that the idiot down the street had walked into the bank armed.)
“That should have been a hint grandma.”

That same night my mom tells me that grandma thinks I should run a public service announcement to alert people to this scam. Sadly, the day after I found out we had a lead news story about the victim of a scam, a different scam, but nonetheless an elderly victim is out money – feeling raped - scammed. We run these stories constantly, I live in what has become the number one retirement community in the US (Google it - #1 Retirement Community), the retired and elderly (sometimes they are the same) are big targets of scam artists.

Fast forward to the following Thursday night dinner. Over hamburgers my grandmother tells me I should run a public service announcement so that people don’t get conned by these people.

“Grandma, I’m not running a PSA.”
“Don’t you care about me?”
“Of, course I care about you. But grandma we run news stories about this all the time, if you’re not going to listen to a news story why would I think you would listen to a PSA?”

Since then the story has evolved and my grandma as dropped her side arm slinging side kick, with no mention of the bank at all. She will only mention that she got the money to wire off to the con men if cornered – and then she will give some credit to the guy at the drug store. She is now pretty much a wise hero of this legend in her mind. Oh, and the phone call to check on Becky – well she now has made that call and of course Becky couldn’t answer the phone because she was a work.

I just roll my eyes faster and inwardly cringe when the topic is mentioned and the history retold, I mean reformulated into its’ latest incarnation.

How was your Easter?



Psamanthe said...

LMAO..... Ok.. maybe at a certain age the elderly need a handler...? There is a horrible little part of me that wishes they would have gotten busted for the gun in the bank. Hmmmmm how would she have told the story then?