We hear a lot about privacy today. People say they want it. They claim to be upset when their privacy is violated. For example, they don’t want the government snooping into their personal lives. Whatever that means. Yet they do want their Facebook friends to know what they had for breakfast. And what they thought of it.
Whether you’re a privacy freak or whether your life is a social media reality show doesn’t matter. Why? Because They’re watching. They know.
They who? Never mind; They are there and They are aware of your life. They even know how much of it you have left. Years ago, well before I had any reason to think about it, I received my first invitation to move into a retirement home. Where did the retirement home (Let’s call it Sunnyvale) get the idea that I was a prospective tenant? Obviously They told them. The shadowy figures who keep track of us passed on the information. Probably for a price. I sure didn’t put my age on Facebook!
That first unwanted invitation started it all. Through the years, I continued to get unwanted invitations. Invitations for macular degeneration checkups. Invitations for other rest homes. Happy Valley. Peaceful Acres. Ads for drugs that aging people might need to perk up those failing bodily functions.
I started to take it all for granted, comforting myself with the lie that I wasn’t as old as They thought I was. Not only did I not need Their notices; I would never need them. After all, I had no plans to let myself get to such a sorry state that assisted living would be an option. At a certain point, I would freeze my deterioration and refuse to age any further.
Beware Millennials: You’re probably thinking the same thing. You can’t see yourselves aging can you? Your skin will always be as resiliently taut as it is today; nothing will ever droop. But They are watching. Patiently. They are counting your hours. They are scheduling the first invitation.
And how do you know when your time is up? They will tell you. Don’t shake your head at me; I know. How? They told me, that’s how! Yeah, They actually sent me notice that my hourglass has a scary shortage of sand in the top section. The other day, I got the final invitation. It wasn’t about assisted living this time. It wasn’t about any kind of living. It was from the Neptune Society. An offer for their “pre-paid cremation” program.
I didn’t open it. Wouldn’t that be submitting to Their verdict? But I can imagine the content anyway: “Getting ready to cash in those chips? The last roundup’s getting pretty close, isn’t it pardner? Don’t leave those final arrangements to others. Don’t make survivors have to worry about what to do with your remains. Think how relieved your family will be when the Neptune Society informs them that it’s all taken care of. . .”
Yikes! Sleep well tonight, Millennials. Don’t be concerned about anything. They’ll tell you when to be concerned.