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Big Government Bureaucracy Uncategorized

Signs, Doors, and an Update

“Sign, sign, everywhere a sign
Blockin’ out the scenery, breakin’ my mind
Do this, don’t do that, can’t you read the sign?”…From the 1971 hit song by the Five Man Electrical Band.

Yes, read the sign, but caveat lector, or, let the reader beware. Last Monday, Meritha and I drove out to Priddis, a beautiful area southwest of Calgary, to look at the fall colors. The trees were still green, and so we’ve made a date to return on October 7, our 53rd anniversary. It’s also two weeks after her surgery for pancreatic cancer. (The update is that the operation was successful, and she is now beginning her 4th day of recovery and is doing well, although recovery from this surgery is quite complicated. We are video chatting each day – aren’t we modern – and highly recommend it!)

 

Here is a SIGN we saw on the way back from Priddis. I was dumbfounded because it clearly shows, in huge letters and arrows in white reflective paint, that there are two lanes for eastbound traffic on Stoney Trail. The other sign on the overpass clearly indicates that northbound Stoney Trail is not open for traffic.

But look at the westbound traffic in a lane that is clearly marked EAST. I had a conversation with the signalman in the yellow suit, and he told me that contractors assume that the orange pylons will signal to drivers that there are opposing lanes. (He also told me that in his job he sees a lot of misleading signage, although this one is probably the most dangerous.)

Let’s assume that late some night someone veers and knocks down a few pylons west of the overpass, and then someone else takes the sign literally. It’s a head-on waiting to happen and borders on criminal neglect. I’ve driven all over Canada and the United States, driven in Istanbul and have been in numerous other cities in Europe and South America. Dar es Salaam in Tanzania – I’ve driven there – is the only place I’ve seen that has sloppier signage than we do. OK, Dar es Salaam is much worse.

I’m embarrassed to have friends from out of province or country, drive into Calgary. Even at the shiny new Foothills Hospital Parkade, this is the sign you see when you are exiting. Don’t see it? It’s that little 12 x 12 green patch on the extreme left side of the opening. It could easily have been four or five times as large, but then, this is Calgary. Who is in charge of traffic signs in this province?

 

 

 

Meritha’s care at Foothills has been excellent, the doctors and nurses professional, and with spot on bedside manners. We couldn’t be happier. But here is a photo of the entrance doors, to the hospital. They’re not frosted, just dirty. I don’t think I’ve seen a service station or tire shop with doors so filthy. Foothills has a 4 ½ billion dollar budget. There’s no excuse.

That’s today’s rant, and update. I really want to thank the hundreds of people that have sent prayers and best wishes to Meritha and me during this past six weeks. We’ve had a lot of bumps on our road so we’re used to this sort of thing, and I can honestly say that we came to this one with confidence.

Next week, maybe we’ll take a look at the Liberal budget, and the great concern expressed (OK, I’m joking) for Western Canada’s oil industry, and the tens of thousands of unemployed workers. Arrgghh!!

I’m Dave Reesor

 

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Uncategorized

Identity Theft, Some Changes at the Reesor’s

Dear friends

I apologize that it’s been about three weeks since I’ve published a blog, and it certainly hasn’t been because there has been nothing happening on the political scene. But there have been things happening here as well, that have disrupted our lives, at least temporarily.

We experienced an attempt to steal my identity. Below, I’ve included details from the very real looking email I got from “Amazon”, and the explanatory note that I sent to Trevor, the policeman that came and investigated. It is an extremely well constructed scam, and fortunately I’ve been in business a long time and was prepared to keep asking questions until I became convinced of what it was.

The other really big issue that’s been disrupting our lives is that in mid August, an ultrasound discovered a growth on Meritha’s pancreas. After blood tests and a CT scan, it was diagnosed as probably cancer, but also, probably at stage one. The surgeon that will be doing her surgery on September 23, looked at the ultrasound and said three of the best words I’ve ever heard. “Everything looks fixable.” If you believe in prayer, it would be appreciated.

Meritha’s been extremely busy with doctor’s visits, and shutting down Internal Affairs Ltd, the home cleaning company she’s operated for nearly 20 years. It’s been a scramble and I’ve been helping her as much as possible. I have my own issues with a hernia and quite severe stenosis in my lower back, so Covid has been one of the least of our issues this year! We’ll keep you posted.

Here’s the identity theft scam email in Blue. I’ve Bolded or Underlined clues that it’s a scam, like questionable English for example.

Order Confirmation

118-48SAG2104017

Dear Dave Reesor,

Thank you for your order. You will be notified by another email with your tracking details when the order is shipped out. You can check the estimated time of delivery for this order below. You will be able to make changes to this order once the order has been approved by our Security assessment team and is ready tobe shipped.

For any assistance, Call our Order Assessment Team at  1-877-611-4906 between 10:30 AM – 20:00 PM EST as we are working with limited staff amid Global Covid-19 situation.

You Patience is highly appreciated

Details of Your Purchase

118-48SAG2104017
Order Placed on Sunday, September 6 2020
If you did not place this order please call our Order Assessment Team at 1-877-611-4906

It then goes on with a photo of an apple MacBook Pro, for $2499 and an Apple watch costing $414.

And then: If you wish to make any changes to this order call our Order Assessment Team at 1-877-611-4906 or is you order is already approved you can check our Help page for more information.

If you use a mobile device, you may choose to receive update and notifications about the delivery of your package and track it from our free official app available on Google Play Store or Apple Store.

Please see the product’s Detail Page for the available quantity of product you purchased if your orders exceeds this quantity it will be automatically cancelled or partially delivered.

And they end up with: We hope to see you again soon  AMAZON.COM

It was laid out almost exactly like an Amazon order, including the colors. All very convincing if you read it quickly!

Here’s my note to the constable that came to investigate.

Trevor
As we discussed and as is shown in the invoice copy I sent you, the scam is very cleverly set up. I got the email advising me of an order that I knew I had not made and with a ship-to location that I have no connection with. But it also says, if you did not make this order, phone the 877 number. So of course I did.

The people on the other end of the line had East Indian or Pakistani accents, but could have been located somewhere else in the world. We had a considerable discussion about the fact that I live in Canada but that the ship to was in Massachusetts, that I had cancelled my Amazon account weeks before, that the credit card number had the wrong last four digits, I don’t use Apple, etc..

They asked for the account number shown on the invoice, and when I read it to them, they said that it was not an Amazon number, and someone was obviously trying to steal my identity. Please hold for a moment.
They came back and informed me that my identity had been stolen, and that someone had set up an Amazon account, and an AMAZON card with a credit limit of $8,000 and that I would be billed for whatever was shipped. Of course they had the solution.

They first said I needed to go to an Amazon store, but I told them that we don’t have an Amazon store and they confirmed it. Then they suggested I go to a local grocery store and get what they called a security code that would put an end to the scam. When they couldn’t tell me exactly what it would cost or what the process was, I continued trying to get it out of them. It was all very vague, so I told them that I was concerned about security, and would phone them from a police station which was only about 20 minutes away. They hung up.

For the most part, their presentation was the slickest that I’ve encountered, but as I asked questions there were some things that gave it away.

Dave Reesor

Friends, these sorts of things make me quite angry, but they are everywhere and will undoubtedly continue to increase in number and the slickness of the presentation. I hope you never are a target, but if you are, I hope this helps.

Next blog, back to politics or social issues, particularly the Rex Murphy for Prime Minister Facebook Group, and restarting Lets Do It Ourselves at ldio.org. And an update on Meritha.

Best to each of you! Please LIKE and SHARE this. If we can help one family not to be scammed, it will be a minute well spent.

Dave Reesor