Yes, I realize this particular milestone is a difficult one for many to accept. But inside I felt my maturity (mentally speaking, that is) would help arrive at a comfortable acceptance of this new stage in life with barely a “bump” to my self-perception. My ego, I figure, is comfortable enough to survive this statistical milestone.
Then my loving family stepped in.
“Honey,” I said, holding up the newspaper, “why are all these little holes cut out of the pages?”
“Oh,” she said, “I cut out the calendar notices for the local AARP meetings and put them up on the refrigerator. This way you’ll know where to go to meet other people your age.”
Looking across the kitchen I could see a handful of clippings hanging from various magnets, each taunting me about my new status in life. In the background my ears could hear the evil laughter of the master playing with her helpless victim.
Sometimes I believe love can me measured by the amount of sarcasm dished out at opportune times. If this is indeed the case, our marriage is a lock because my wife is an expert with a tool kit like no one else.
But seemingly the next day, as calmly as I went along my business, the outside world began to join the chorus of “well wishers.”
We all get spam emails — uninvited offers showing up in our email box for everything from mortgage rates to a person halfway around the world who wants to transfer me 10 million dollars if only I’ll send them my banking numbers. For the most part, I’ve always taken comfort in knowing these were blindly sent out to no one in particular.
That is what I believed — until the past 30 days.
Apparently to the great spam-sending organization in the digital sky, I am now a target for new and more exciting offers.
Suddenly, or so it seems, I am getting offers for companies who’d like to help me get financial assistance for a motorized scooter — and we’re not talking about a golf cart. And then came the offers for finding singles over 50 or how to find a Russian bride.
Granted, I know sketchy pharmaceutical offers for Viagra are just a part of the Internet culture, but to find them sandwiched between emails for a dating service and hip and knee replacement services leads me to believe there just might be someone actually poring over a data bank of some sort.
But the worst came, again, from my loving, dear wife.
Walking into the house the other day, my wife greeted me with a suspiciously warm hug and kiss.
“Honey, something came in the mail today for you,” she said in a syrupy voice. “I think you’re going to be excited.”
Tossing my jacket over a chair, I turned to find her holding up a small white card for me to read.
“What is this?” I asked.
“It’s your temporary AARP card,” she said, again with an evil yet expert twist of voice inflection.
“Looks like you are going start getting all kinds of discounts …”
And then and there suddenly my ego cried “uncle.” There before my eyes were the letters of my name spelled out across a piece of plastic announcing my arrival at a milestone I could no longer deny. I was now officially crossing over to the other side and leaving my youth behind me.
This is going to be interesting — I’ll keep you posted about what I find out there.
Woolsey is publisher of the Times-Georgian.