I got my AARP card in the mail last night.
At 10:30 p.m., 90 minutes shy of my 50th birthday. I'm sitting on my sofa, watching the Duke-Butler basketball game and staring at an AARP envelope in my mail pile.
Wow! What timing, I thought. Actually, I'd expected them to try to lure me before now, since I know someone who got solicited at 40--and a 22-year-old who joined.
But this was my first solicitation, as far as I know. And how impressive that AARP was sending Happy Birthday wishes along with the hard sell
I ripped open the envelope. And I found...no wishes. No recognition of my birthday at all. A flimsy piece of paper included a generic solicitation to join for $16 a year. Pasted to it: a temporary AARP card.
With the massive database and marketing might that AARP is known for, why wouldn't they customize? I wonder. Now I suspect that the timing of their invitation to me, one day before my 50th, was just a coincidence.
But it worked. I'm joining anyway.
"Fifty is not the new 30. Instead, I think 50 is the new 50. Today, 50 can be whatever you want it to be."
- Nancy Graham, just-named editor of AARP, the world's largest-circulation magazine. Nancy, a dear friend, worked with me at Fortune 20 years ago. And after winding her way through Time Inc. (TWX)--at Money and then at People--she's in a sweet spot, serving America's largest demographic and reaching MOREPatricia Sellers - Oct 31, 2008 6:26 PM ET
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