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Sunday, July 30, 2017

Rogers Wireless Refund Scam │ CPAP Machines May Not Prevent Cardiovascular Disease nor Lower Risk of Dying from Any Cause

As I was expecting, my younger brother Mark never came home last evening ─ he generally stays at the home of his girlfriend Bev on Saturday nights.

When he had left here early that afternoon, he had said that he and Bev were going to attend a Vancouver Canadians game in Vancouver scheduled for the early evening.

Someone Mark knew had offered him a pair of free tickets.

Well, I found out from Mark this morning that he and Bev never went. The fellow who had offered the tickets must have gotten annoyed with Mark's onerous questions about the venue (such as beer prices and similar nitpicking), so the guy never collected them from his source to pass along to Mark.

According to Mark, the chap said that since Mark had not followed up and specifically said that he was interested in going, the assumption was that there was no interest.

I spent roughly 9:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. watching an extremely engrossing movie ─ in fact, a two cans of strong (8% alcohol) beer movie!

The movie was Passengers.

If you've not seen nor even heard of it, this video is a combination of at least a couple of trailers:

I would watch it again with someone just to share in it with them.

Of course, I adore Jennifer Lawrence.

To try and encapsulate what the movie is about, a ship containing 5,000 colonists and well over 200 crew ─ all of whom are in suspended animation ─ is on a 120-year-long journey to a distant planet.

No one aboard the ship is conscious.

Thirty years into the journey, there is a run-in with a meteor cluster and associated asteroid.

Somehow, this awakens one of the passengers ─ a man.

Initially he thinks that the journey must nearly be over and he was awakened according to programming, as would be others. But he soon realizes that this is not so.

And he is impotent to do anything at all to change anything. The technology to get back to sleep does not exist on the ship ─ the various pods were only designed to sustain the sleepers, and not to put them to sleep.

We get to watch him trying to adjust to being all alone, with only an android bartender for company. The bartender is a fixture of the bar, however, and does not ever go anywhere else aboard the ship.

Months and months pass, and the man starts contemplating suicide. In fact, at one point he almost opens a space portal to allow himself to be sucked out to die.

But then one day he notices our heroine in her pod, and he starts learning everything he can about her by accessing various records that include her own video footage telling about herself.

Incredibly lonely, he fixates upon her and allows himself to fall in love. And then the inner struggle starts ─ does he dare figure out how to selfishly awaken her and consign her to share his fate?

In other words, to grow old together and eventually die all alone aboard the spacecraft before it ever arrives at its destination, never having anyone else to talk to except each other and the bartending android?

Despite what the trailer shows, there never are any other people who interact with our two main characters except for one terminally ill crewman who also unexpectedly awakens, but that happens well over a year after the lonely man first awakens.

Towards the end of the movie, there is a highly-charged emotional sequence where the young lady is trying to get some sort of medical pod to bring the man back to life following a space gambit he had undertaken to save the ship.

She had grown to hate the guy so much; but now in losing him, she realized that she was going to be entirely alone for all of her long lifetime if she can't work a miracle and get him revived.

It was during this exquisitely-acted drama that my wife Jack suddenly started texting me ─ the movie itself was less than 10 minutes from finishing.

Her first text was as follows:
ROGERS has overcharged your Account. Collect your refund (80.88$)! : 
They send this message to me
Rogers Wireless is our carrier for the cellphone 'couples plan' that we have.

I guess there was a link or something in the original message ─ she had just copied the text and forwarded that to me.

Well, I knew this could only be a scam. If Rogers had uncovered a billing error in our favour, they would just reduce our next billing accordingly ─ they would not force us to actually have to apply for the refund that they were admitting was owed to us!

Also, I don't believe either of us was addressed by name. Rogers would know who we are if they owed us money, and they would use our names in the text.

It's like those bogus IRS and CRA telephone messages where people are randomly phoned by imposters threatening legal action if a supposed tax debt is not made good.

Those calls never actually address anyone ─ the fake agent just says something like, "This message is for YOU!"

For who?

You mean that it's for absolutely anyone who might hear it?

Yeah, right ─ of course that's how a professional government revenue agent would deliver such a message.

Anyway, the tail-end of the movie was somewhat spoiled, of course. But Jack didn't know what I was so deeply invested in.

I didn't text her back until the show was over, but my train of focus on the movie had been somewhat derailed.

Nevertheless, I had a bit of a playful exchange with her once I commenced counseling her against clicking on any links, and outlining the reasons why it was not a Rogers text.

I think that it was maybe a couple of minutes ahead of midnight when I was finally in bed last evening.

I considered that I slept well overnight until after 5:00 a.m. when I found myself awake enough to care to bother making a trip to the bathroom, and drinking some water.

Maybe it was 6:42 a.m. when next I checked the time and rose for the day.

I soon busied myself working on the edit I am involved with of an old post at my hosted website Siam-Longings.

Almost always in my mind on a Sunday morning is the need to have my morning session of exercise out in the backyard tool shed before Mark shows up after he finally parts with Bev and comes home.

But this morning, the normalization process was taking its time ─ I have to have however long it takes for me to recover from my generally poor night's sleep, and that recovery this morning was delaying.

And then he was here ─ maybe 9:30 a.m.

Well, a short exercise session was better than none at all, so when he started a shower, I headed on outside and had a truncated session. The day was going to be too hot to exercise in the shed in the afternoon, so it was either then or never at all today.

After I was back here working at my computer, it wasn't long before my youngest stepson Poté rose; and at 10:58 a.m. he was out the front door to his car to drive himself to work.

His older brother Tho was still shut up in his sleeping area.

Just into the noon-hour I was all set for a nap; but then I decided to just get outside and sit in the backyard in the sunshine.

I had actually lied down in bed. Mark was in his own bedroom brushing his teeth. However, by the time I dressed myself and emerged from my bedroom, he was gone.

It was 12:16 p.m. when I commenced just over 40 minutes out in the backyard, seated in a chair and facing into the Sun, and wearing just a pair of athletic shorts.

Just when I was finished, Mark poked his head out of the house and said he was going again ─ he had only been away to get a haircut.

He never did have a nap ─ and he looked very rough when he got home this morning after spending the night with Bev. I reckon he'll be passing out in his chair this evening for certain once he's back at home again.

After I was back in the house, I was just finishing up my day's first meal when Tho finally showed his face ─ it was about 1:30 p.m.

Who can sleep like my two stepsons? It's ridiculous!

Just between the time that I got up this morning and when he got up in the afternoon, he was actually in bed longer that I was in the entirety of my night!

I sometimes wonder if I have sleep apnoea. I wish that I could afford some sophisticated monitoring equipment and film myself on the occasional night while I'm in bed.

On the comedy series Mike & Molly, we often saw Mike go to bed hooked up to one of those CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) machines and wearing the cumbersome mask.

I regularly wondered if the actor (Billy Gardel) playing Mike actually needed such a device ─ he seemed to get more enormous every season of the series.

Those machines are used to keep an airflow happening in the sleeper, thereby preventing occurrences like heart attacks.

But recent findings imply that maybe that preventive benefit is not happening after all:




Well, whether or not these machines are preventing deaths, they surely must be preventing eventual dementia ─ a brain starved of oxygen every night for years is on very weak legs.

But let's return to that movie!

When I was in my teens ─ and on into my 20s ─ I often wished that I could be in charge of my own starship like Captain James T. Kirk.

It's having such a strong fantasy-based background in those formative years that helps make me enjoy a movie like Passengers as much as I did.

That younger me would have been agog to have found some Jennifer Lawrence equivalent back then!

I am going to close out today's post now with a journal entry from 41 years ago when I was 26 years old, and living in a basement housekeeping unit in New Westminster.

I was renting in a private home located on Ninth Street, and about two houses up from Third Avenue.

At this time I must have been roughly midway through a three-month contract working for a New Westminster charitable organization called S.A.N.E. (Self Aid Never Ends) that is today known as Fraserside Community Services Society.

I had previous part-time experience with S.A.N.E. that may have stretched back into 1974.

In those years, S.A.N.E. was housed in an old building on Carnarvon Street that has long since been demolished. Nevertheless, it seems to me that the building's location was roughly where today the New Westminster SkyTrain Station reaches out onto that same street.

I worked as a swamper on S.A.N.E.'s blue pick-up truck. That workhorse vehicle was usually driven by a dear lady in her early 40s, Esther St. Jean.

On the evening of this specific day ─ a Friday ─ I was expected to head on over to the home of my younger brother Mark and his girlfriend Catherine Jeanette Gunther. They lived on Bentley Road in Whalley.

Jeanette had phoned me at S.A.N.E. the day before to invite me along on a weekend camping trip.
FRIDAY, July 30, 1976

Up at 6:45 a.m. after a dream-rich night.

I'm not all that fussy about taking off camping tonight; I'd as soon stay home and enjoy food and cleanliness ─ and privacy.

My morning today wasn't bad, but Steve Thackray & I spent the afternoon handling a 2-load move. Took never showed up today.

I had several shortbread cookies and a cherry-rich pastry courtesy of Esther.

In the morn I went with Esther as she took her Howard for a welfare appointment; we saw Bill Anderson go there, but she was the only one to catch his embarrassed attention.

Though the day began cloudy, it turned hot and sunny.

I got my $252.58 cheque and cashed it, buying some T-shirts and bikini-briefs at Zellers, joggers at Army & Navy, 2 boiling chickens at Rob Roys, and groceries at Safeway.

Then home to exercise.

As sometimes happens, Esther was deluged with praise of my physique from the woman we moved; but I am not flattered, as these people always look so decadent.

I watched a fabulous volleyball game between USSR & Poland for the gold medal; Poland won.

I never felt like hauling all my equipment over to Whalley this evening, so stalled around watching TV, hoping the others would pick me up.


They'll have to get me rather early tomorrow, for I'll not wait round.
It sounds like I was being rather difficult about that camping venture. I regret that now.

There was a fairly wide rotation of swampers I would work with through any given week. I have no memory of any Steve Thackray or Thackery or however his name might have been spelled.

"Took" was a middle-aged Indigenous Canadian who often failed to show up for work ─ he liked his drinking.

Gosh, I cannot recall who Esther's "Howard" was. She only had two young-adult daughters as children, and a husband whose name was "Charlie" ─ it certainly was not Howard. Bill Anderson was a part-time S.A.N.E. employee who was likely mortified that he had been recognized by Esther as he was going into the welfare office.

I've never mentioned Rob Roy Meats in my journal before ─ I don't remember anything of the place. All of the stores I mentioned ─ except for Safeway ─ were located on Columbia Street, as likely was my bank.

I have just researched and located this sketch of the store by someone named Won Kang:

I had definitely been caught up in the Summer Olympic Games.

Anyway, I didn't have a telephone, so the only way Mark and Jeanette would be getting in touch with me that evening was by visiting me.

If they did not, it appears that I likely intended to get out the next morning and just 'do my thing' regardless of the camping trip.

I sure feel like a rat reading about that.
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