Just as I was pondering what gibberish items to include in this column, the phone rang.

“Grandma?” the voice sounded. “Nope, not grandma,” I responded.

“Oh grandpa, how are you? It’s your eldest grandson,” came the voice again.

I’d heard the pitch before, and I have friends who have nearly fallen for the ‘grandson’s plea for money’ line. So I was forewarned.

“I don’t have an eldest grandson,” I lied in reply. “Click” and the line went dead.

Unfortunately, this scam must work far too often. Apparently those using it don’t often change the script about needing money for an emergency situation. And just enough gullible responders fall for it to make it profitable.

Another scam that has recently been making the rounds is a call from the Social Security people. It even leaves a message if unanswered, requesting a call back to a certain number.

The pitch is that someone is fraudulently using your Social Security number and you will suffer penalties if you don’t respond. We’ve received this call numerous times in the past month. It has varied only once – saying that the fraud is being perpetuated in Mexico.

It’s worth noting that the SS people don’t use this procedure. It’s just another attempt to scam we People of Maturity, aka Senior Citizens.


Restoration work on our 110-year-old Center Building in the heart of downtown Patterson is nearly complete. A walk-through to check on interior painting is scheduled for this morning (Thursday).

Plans are for the museum to be open the evening of Saturday, Dec. 7 when Santa will join the downtown parade being organized by the local Chamber of Commerce. That’s when Christmas lights will decorate the circle.


Let’s add another name to our 90-plus list.

Marilyn Ettleman recently returned to Patterson after living for a short time in the Bay Area. She previously resided here for five years.

The 92-year-old woman had a banking career in the Bay Area.


Patterson’s street trees are rapidly losing their lives, but what remain are truly beautiful.

I haven’t seen leaves of such glorious color since last fall.


Do you remember when Patterson had its own downtown movie theater? If so, then you are a Person of Maturity.

The late Elmer and Vada Fink built the new Patterson Theater back in the 1930s. It closed in the early ‘80s after serving the community well for over four decades. It was remodeled in the 1950s and renamed Del Puerto Theatre.


Being a native of Iowa and an avid football fan, I thoroughly enjoyed watching both Iowa and Iowa State come from behind last Saturday to nationally-ranked opponents. The Hawkeyes dropped No. 8 Minnesota from the unbeaten ranks, while the Cyclones posted a victory over Texas. The games were televised at the same time, allowing me to flip channels for a full three hours.

The same occurred Sunday when both the 49ers and the LV Raiders (better get used to that) bounced back from deficits to record victories. Again, the games were on the telly in the same time slot.

All four home teams rallied to win – making enjoyable watching. And the fact that I watched four games in about three-and-a-half hours is amazing.


A college friend recently sent me this email:

“I’ve decided I’m not old. I’m 25 plus shipping and handling.”

That’s one way to look at it.

Ron Swift is editor/publisher emeritus of the Patterson Irrigator. He can be reached at ronkay@gvni.com.

PI editor/publisher emeritus

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