Tuesday, November 21, 2006

how come u don't call me anymore



if u don't call me... u gotta try...

about a month ago, i called up my moms partly because i had a question but also just to let her know that her first born is still breathing. not that my mother worries. she is, in fact, an unabashed non-worrier. when other moms got up early to help their toddlers, my mom taught me self-sufficience: instead of making the kid breakfast on saturday mornings, she used to put a tupperware bowl of cereal and some milk on the bottom shelf of the fridge. so instead of having to wake her up, i could just go in there myself,"make" breakfast, and watch smurfs until she woke up. mom is not, and never has been a morning person. but i digress. anyway, i call her up and she tells me that she's in the doctor's office with my dad. word? they didn't used to do this when we were younger. hell, my mom would send me--and i was under 18, mind you-- as her representative to a few of my younger sister's appointments, and now she's chatting it up with my dad in the waiting room just minutes before he has to bend over and cough? wow. my great-grandparents used to do that shit. doctors visits are like the geriatric olympics; they're events. so i realized very quickly about my parents: those niggas are getting old. i never thought i'd see the day.

why on earth can't you just pick up the phone?

i also never thought i'd see a commercial advertising cell phones for old people. if you watch enough television--and believe me, i do--you might catch a 30-second ad for a new cell phone company service jitterbug. basically, it's what happens when a medic alert bracelet meets a flip phone. the company offers customors two options: first, there's jitterbug dial, with "yes" and "no" buttons and ginormous numbers. second, there's jitterbug one touch, which might as well be called "jitterbug i've fallen and i can't get up." the phone has three buttons, "operator," "tow," and "911." they'll set up your phone list and voice mail. they also let you prepay for the phone service for up to a year. you know how old folks like to pay shit up years in advance. something about being on a fixed income. which i never really understood. i mean, if you're on salary you're on a fixed income too, right? but whatever. i never really comprehended the ways of old people. bingo and old country buffet never really moved me. yet again, i digress. all that said, i don't think there's an aarp hook-up.

sometimes it feels like i'm gonna die...

as people continue to live longer, and the baby boomers continue to get older, i imagine jitterbug and similar services are just a few of the "mature person" friendly products we'll see advertised. it's ironic in a way-- this whole technology for old people bit. technological "advancements" seem to make more things disposable, only cool and useful until the next thing comes out. and we, with our post-modern selves (or is it post-post?), seemingly have no angst about it.

this wedding of the new and fleeting with the old and apparently long-lasting is an interesting one. understanding that the young'ns tend to drive advertising, i wonder what kinds of marketing shifts we'll see as a large portion of our population--and, perhaps the architects and purveyors of certain cultural bastions and institutions that still stand prominently--gets older. in the mid-90s, i remember seeing the construction of plenty of swanky retirement homes in my native fort wheezy. conversations with my mother have vacillated between my parents' inthenotsodistant future retirement to north carolina, and her inability to work the mp3 player my dad bought her. (did i mention that my mom ain't even 50? and no, she ain't 49, either.) how will these bedfellows coexist? happily? acrimoniously? somewhere in between?

either way, i hope they get some better commercials. selling shit to old people doesn't have to be so corny.

just one lousy dime, baby. why cant u call me sometime?

anyway, if granny called and told you that though she loved her tin of peanut brittle last year, even efferdent can secure her dentures long enough to enjoy it, i imagine getting the brothers, sisters, and cousins to chip in and get her a year's worth of jitterbug service ain't such a bad alternative.

of course, you know that means you'll have to call more often, right?

the idea of ringback tones for the hard of hearing scares me.

this entry sucked. sorry.


language alone protects us from the scariness of things with no names. language alone is meditation. ~toni morrison

5 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Summer you never cease to amaze me. Although I know this is TMI for real, for real, the other day my wife am I true members forty sho nuff can see 50 club were in bed talking about our latest aches and pains. And we bust out laughing remembering that a couple of decades has certainly changed the nature and character of our pillow talk. And this is the wacked out part--it's okay.

What really got me abt the age thing was this salute to hip hop on VH-1 and the discussion of the Sugar Hill Gang and Rapper's Delight--and I remember when it was truly fun to listen to the corny rhymes!

Harold.

21/11/06 04:58  
Blogger Lee said...

(or is it post-post?)

Yes.

Anyway, the bright side of our coming after the baby boomer generation is that we'll have all kinds of cool stuff when we're old. I, for one, am very much looking forward to my segwheelchair.

21/11/06 22:02  
Blogger Jdid said...

they market to you from the time you're born til the day you die. once you aint a homeless bum they got a commercial for that ass

26/11/06 22:47  
Anonymous funchilde said...

wow. all the potential product spin-offs...dazzling...and you know they are coming. Hope your pops is doing well. Your mom and my mom must have collaborated on tactics to "increase independence in offspring and progeny."

you still crack my shit up

27/11/06 08:06  
Blogger Hollambeeee said...

i saw the jitterbug commercial a couple of days ago and i laughed...so reading about it here just made me laugh more...

thanks sum...your fan(s) appreciate it...lol

1/12/06 21:38  

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