Ask Grandpa: On giving up driving, shedding scams

Ask Grandpa
Share this article:

I am at a crossroads in my life. I have been a driver since I was 15 years old. In January 2019 I will turn 75. That puts me at 60 years with a driver’s license and never one accident. Time is taking its toll on me. I am seeing where I am having some close calls. I don’t want to ruin a life-long record. I enjoy the freedom to be able to get up and go whenever I want. I am getting afraid to drive. If I give up my license, I may never be able to get it back. How can I stop driving without having to explain myself to family? My family is very judgmental and expects me to continue to be self-sufficient.

Grandpa says: You owe no explanation to anyone for your life choices. You might consider selling your car. Is there a family member who may need one? That would be a great way to slip into retirement from driving. If you feel you must explain to others why you stopped driving, a simple honest answer, such as, “I am not sure I can trust the other drivers on the road anymore,” could do it. It is wise to make your choice before the State makes it for you. I commend you on your lifetime achievement of 60 years without an auto accident. Professional drivers tell me that one travels about one million miles in 17 years. If that is true, you have three-and-a-half million miles of accident free driving under your belt. Your insurance company is probably very happy that you signed with them!

I just got a call from a recording telling me that IRS issued a warrant for my arrest for failure to pay taxes on my 2017 income. I know that to be a scam because I live on only Social Security and have exempt from income tax for six years. The recording told me to call 424-326-2403 to clear up the matter. I did not call that number, but wanted to let you and your readers know that it is a scam. I don’t know how it works, but I will not call that number.

Grandpa says: Thank you. Good thing you did not call that number. If you had, every number you have ever called would become known to the scammers. They would know where you bank, shop, your family, and your friends, and everything you would have done on your phone. That is a gold mine of information for identity thieves. Again, dear readers, do not ever call back a phone number left for you by a recorded message. IRS does not make initial contact by telephone, social media, text, or E-mail. Tax-paying season is approaching and we are subject to lots of schemes to get our money and identity. Report every suspected scam to the Treasury Department, and the police. Your vigilance is the Treasury Department’s greatest asset. And, please, keep Grandpa informed of every new scam you hear about. I will publish your warnings.

Got something stuck in your craw? Ask Grandpa. Address your letters to Ask Grandpa c/o The Voice, 314 N. Lake Street, Suite 2, Aurora, IL 60506 or send an E-mail to

Leave a Reply