I’ve noticed a rather disturbing change in my junk mail as I grow older.
It started when I turned 50 and AARP sought me out to join them with enticing offers of senior discounts on Depends. Then at 60 among my birthday greetings I found a solicitation from The Neptune Society for cremation services. That was kind of a downer. I’m almost afraid to peer into the future lest my 70th bring an invitation from what I can only imagine will be a company aptly named “Check-Out Time,” offering euthanasia services – cash only, no credit cards accepted.
I have to admit that solicitations for long-term care insurance sent by the same companies offering me short-term life insurance confuse me, and it’s more than a little creepy to find myself just automatically appearing on these types of mailing lists. I’m only buoyed by the fact that Victoria’s Secret still considers me young and nubile enough to send me their catalogs and I’ve been known to buy several unneeded black lace garter belts just to stay in their good graces.
I look forward to election times when my mail is full of expressions of desire from those vying for my affection. Clearly, I am worth more to them alive than dead and that, in itself, is worth sending them a few bucks.
I realize that there is no longer any such thing as “personal” information and that we’re precision-targeted by corporations from cradle to grave. Recently, however, I decided to fight back and took some pleasure in ordering subscriptions to Seventeen and TeenVogue magazines thinking I’d just mess with them a bit. In response, I received literature on the early-warning signs of dementia along with advice that I consult my doctor about the enclosed recommended drugs for the treatment of such.
This may be a battle I can’t win.