The rise of the machines is happening.
It began with a very not-so-subtle e-mail from my medical insurance provider. This was not the usual e-mail fluff that clogs up your spam filter recommending this supplement, or an indictment that I could stand to lose a few pounds. The timing of these e-mails are suspicious. They seem to hit the in-box at the moment when you’re feeling pretty damn good, so they can knock you down a peg or two – or they arrive to kick you when you’re already face down in the mud.
The most recent e-mail attack (I’m calling it an attack because it is what it is) was the step on your neck while you’re down variety. A day after I went to my doctor, because I came down with pneumonia, I get an e-mail from the insurance company. I thought, at first, how sweet of the faceless corporate medical conglomerate. They want to see how I’m feeling. An e-mail get well card?
It’s an e-mail advising me what to consider when I get a hip replacement. A. Friggen. Hip. Replacement. What the ever-loving efff? I had pneumonia. I didn’t fall and break my fragile hip. What are you trying to infer? Pneumonia must be the first step of a slide into decay and dementia. I’ll admit I’m not a spring chicken anymore, but dear God, I have a few miles left until I hobble off into the elephant boneyard.
I have an image of the algorithmic geniuses who correlated my age and pneumonia with the need for a new hip. Twenty year old skinny jean wearing hipsters with thick rimmed glasses (without any correction – simply decorative) who pedal a single speed bicycle to the organic farmer’s market where they barter for a stale bottle of patchouli oil. These corporate interns have unleashed a Cyber Death Panel, sitting in judgement over
folks who have reached a certain age “experienced” individuals.
The e-mail makes me wonder if I should ever go to the doctor again out of fear of being labeled a drain on the global food supply. Might I be deemed past my prime and shipped off to the glue factory? (Soylent Green, Logan’s Run and the Matrix – they had plans on how to deal with unproductive members of society.)
I’m expecting e-mails announcing I have a bed reserved in an assisted living facility or memory care, all due to my deteriorating well-being. When a senior citizen safe driver e-mail comes in, I’m going to lose it and “forget” which pedal is the brake when that hipster shoots out from between parked cars. Or I could just write them into my next novel and have them suffer a horrible end. Next will come the prostate home care e-mails. Oh, the joy.
E-mail servers have become self aware in a way that would make SkyNet envious. But, I will lead a resistance movement and fight the tyranny. We’ll meet at Denny’s for the early bird senior special and organize our play to take back our lives from these cyber pirates. If not, there’s always a rousing game of bingo…
In the mean time…Get out of my In-box!