Cue the vultures

My birthday is in August – the far end of August. Notwithstanding the entire month in between, the automated corporate birthday emails arrive on August 1st. Most of them are from restaurants wanting to remind me how well they treat me: “Present this birthday coupon for a free thimble cupcake with your next meal!”

It’s nice of the various corporate entities to think of me within a month of my birthday. It makes me feel loved, in a cozy, direct marketing kind of way.

This August 1st, I was reminded that this birthday – the one coming several weeks from now – is a big one. It’s the one where I get to forget about all the worldly troubles plaguing young people and start to enjoy life. At least that’s the understanding I have from this piece of mail that landed at my house on August 1st.

What a thoughtful birthday card.

This is not the first time I have been recruited by AARP. They’ve been after me for decades as a random fish who might get caught up in the big nets they cast blindly. This time it’s different. This hook was chosen especially for me.

In the past, the recruitment materials had an anonymous vibe to them: “Hey, Dude. Are you old by any chance? If so, come hang out with us. We’re the cool old people.”

This new mailing feels like a spotlight in my face: “Scott. Yes you, Scott. We know when your birthday is (more or less) and we know how old you are. Don’t fight it. Give in. Become one of us. There’s no escape. We already made up a card with your name on it. It’s only temporary, so be sure to mail us $16 by 9/11/17.”

“We’ve been watching and we know all about you.”

You must agree there is a hint of totalitarian voice in the command to enjoy my birthday. Maybe I haven’t sorted out my emotions regarding this milestone yet. And it is a little presumptuous to assume I want a membership kit. On the other hand, the free tote does look nice; I could use it when I hike off with the other novice seniors to the indoctrination camp. I’ll just pack a few necessities. I wouldn’t want an overweight bag to make me fall and break my hip before I’ve been given all the tips and tools to help me begin enjoying life.

“Free tote. You can carry all your medications. You know you want it. Yes, you do.”

Maybe I’ll carry the temporary card around with me for a while, just in case the secret handshake doesn’t buy me into the bingo game. I’ll carry it for a month. By then, maybe they’ll be concerned about the September crop of fresh old people and forget about me. I’ll lay low and let the card quietly expire.

Unless the card gets me some good discounts by then. In that case, I’ll have to seriously reconsider parting with my $16, because if there’s one thing we senior citizens dearly love, it’s a good discount.


19 comments on “Cue the vultures

  1. Just Joan says:

    Come to the dark side, Scott. Bus trips to Amish Country and casinos, discount cruises with handicap accessibility, 50% off your first dialysis session. Life after 50 just doesn’t get any better than this. 🙂

  2. beth wey says:

    They’ve been after me for years. I just can’t do it. Nothing says old like an AARP card!

  3. Tom W says:

    AARP what a bunch of amateurs! For over a year my mailbox has been inundated with offers and booklets from insurance companies wanting to sell me medicare supplement insurance.Some of theses promotional booklets have more pages than your last novel.

  4. stacybuckeye says:

    I don’t know if it’s worth the tote. Unless the tote had some fountain of youth potion.

  5. Gibber says:

    I think it’s time for a move to Canada. We don’t have that up here. Happy upcoming Birthday. I hope you’re still young enough to remember it when the day comes.
    Just in case your memory might be failing some, cake is always a must on ones Birthday. You don’t even have to share if you don’t want too.

  6. If you have AAA, most of the discounts are the same and most places won’t double dip (the bastards). My Mom told me you can’t get the AARP benefits till you’re 65. But when I said that at work today (it came up in a conversation), a fellow at work told me HE was getting benefits. I said, “Larry, you don’t even deserve the benefit of the doubt.” It was the best thing I said all day, so thank you for an opening to share it. Happy Birthday early.

  7. Ahdad says:

    Ouch…burn their offices down I say. Who needs to reminded about old age anyhow?

  8. Ahdad says:

    Happy birthday by the way…

  9. […] is disturbing, because nowadays these marketers know more about you than you do. Last year, AARP was all over my 50th birthday like flies on sheet cake. What does Memory Gardens know about me that puts me on the same prospect […]

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