Thursday, December 24, 2009

It's All Fun And Games Until Somebody Loses A Memory

Christmas Eve, and nobody is snug in his bed. That's because it is only afternoon, and that would be kind of abnormal, even for the Hillbilly family.

We will be going to my sister's house this evening for snacks and games. If there was betting on the contest winners, I would be the heavy favorite. Even money, I'm thinking. Because I always win, except for last year, when my brother-in-law-the-former-mayor's sister-in-law tied with me, and was given the prize. That's because I always win. Like that made it right to just give her the win.

My sister called yesterday with the official invitation. She wanted me to warn The Pony that the game prizes (for the game where everybody gets one) are designed for old ladies, and that whatever prize he gets, he should at least try to PRETEND he's happy with it, instead of groaning. She said that I will probably win this year's games, because my competition can't be there. She also said that she based that assumption on the fact that our mom never really knows what's happening in those games, because she is so focused on the kids, and that she knows it will not be my brother-in-law-the-former-mayor, and that while her mother-in-law is pretty sharp, she won't win. Oh, and that we both know Tunnel-Vision H won't win, and the kids don't know enough old-people knowledge, and that our grandma didn't even recognize her on the phone a few hours ago, so she won't have much chance.

That is a low blow for Grandma. It's not fair to insinuate that she is Alzheimerish. Sure, she gets confused sometimes, but I blame that on dehydration. And besides, you can't just base a decision like that on one phone call. Sis called Grandma to officially invite her to the annual snacks-and-games Christmas Eve bash. It went a little something like this:

Who is this?
It's Sis.
Sis who?
Sis. Your granddaughter.
You're going to have to give me a last name.
Sis FormerMayor.
Sis FormerMayor.
I don't know what you're saying.
OK, Grandma. Hubby will call you.
Bye now.

See, Grandma has a hearing problem. Her ear holes are too tiny for her hearing aids. At least that's her story, and she's sticking to it, because if you argue about it, she says, "What?" I always have to shout and repeat myself when I call her. Which is not often. Caretaker H goes to visit her every Sunday night. He's good with the elderly. They shoot the breeze, and he fixes things, and he puts her medicine in a weekly container thingy. Caretaker H has to scold Grandma about being too trusting. "Don't sign anything! Even if the pharmacy makes a delivery and asks you to sign, tell them to leave it or not, and we will take care of the signature when I'm here. You don't know what people might try to get you to sign." Grandma has always been too trusting. She hired a dude to paint her house, and gave him the money up front. You guessed it. He never painted her house. She said he must have really needed that money. He had done work for her husband before he died, and she trusted him.

In Grandma's defense, the local paper recently had a story in their scam series about scammers calling old people and asking for money to be wired. The scammer would start out saying that he needed money to bond out of jail.

Who's this?
Your grandson.
Which one?
Which one do you think it is?
No. It's not Richie.
Yes, Grandma. It's Robbie. I went to Canada for a bachelor party for my friend, and there was a misunderstanding. I'm in jail, and I need $3000 to get out. Can you send it to me? Don't tell Mom and Dad. They'll be upset.

So 'Grandma' would wire the money. Then 'Robbie' would call back and say the money never got there, and could she send it again? One lady sent $10,000 before she found out from family that Robbie had never even gone to Canada, and was just fine. The thieves can pick up that money at a Western Union store in any city, not just where it gets wired to. That makes it nearly impossible for them to get caught.

I told Sis that maybe Grandma was being extra cautious. I know she reads the paper. Sis said, "But I didn't even tell her I was in jail, or that I needed money." I think she missed the point. Anyhoo... it should be an interesting evening.

Merry Christmas to all.

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