When we were home schooling, we would gets packets of cards in the mail, each offering some new curriculum materials or summer camp. There were fifty or sixty cards—and I would glance through them, trying to keep up with new tools and resources and only very occasionally buying a new book or educational game. They had the right audience.
We got a similar set of the cards in the mail the other day, and I broke open the cellophane wrapper to take a look. The first ten cards were for a reverse mortgage, a treatment for back pain, a free magazine for grandchildren, a Medicare advantage plan, a supplemental dental plan, a mobile help button, a pharmacy discount, a glucometer, a selection of back, wrist or knee braces and another Medicare supplemental plan.
You get the idea. I checked the address label and was happy to see it was addressed to my wife Katie. There were 60 offers in all, including free catheter samples and a walk-in bathtub. Who knew there was so much technology to make aging easy and expensive? I could spend thousands of dollars on things I don’t want or need. Yet.
Unlike those home school cards, these were not exactly needs-based or targeted ads. It was a shotgun approach, hoping something would hit someone. It certainly hit me. The. Wrong. Way. Frankly, all the models in the ads look too healthy or happy to use the stuff they are advertising.
I know I am.