Two years ago this month, my mother passed away after a lengthy battle with numerous health issues including a stroke, a heart attack and two bouts of lung cancer. The first bout’s treatment of radiation and chemo filled her lungs with scar tissue, making it necessary for her to wear oxygen. It also caused the bones in her sternum as well as her vertebrae to disintegrate. She spent her last six months fairly confined to a hospital bed … where my desk sits now.
Despite it all, despite some really bad days when we’d both end up in tears, my mother had a ridiculous, wicked sense of humor. I still have cartoons she clipped hanging on my refrigerator as well as a rather disturbing “news blurb” of one poor guy’s demise when he threw garbage from the roof of his business … and ended up “D.I.T.D.” (dead in the dumpster). My mother thought this was a hoot.
I’m painting this rather dark picture so you will “get” the humor in the story of the day.
Since my mom lived with me for five years, and since I was the lone child, I still receive her mail from time to time. So, I wasn’t surprised when an envelope arrived from Macy’s. Mom had an account there since it was “Lazarus,” where she shopped with black-belt prowess. And Macy’s sent her a new American Express credit card. Okay, here’s the funny part … The copy on the flyer attached to the card read: TAKE THE MAGIC WITH YOU. The message was illustrated with a lady holding a red balloon, floating in a very blue sky.
I just laughed and said, “I think it’s too late.” And laughed again and said, “But you CAN’T take it with you.” And knew positively that my mom would have LHerAO at this … mostly because I remember her sending a pretty funny letter to some lender wanting to extend credit to my dad based on his “outstanding credit history” … nearly a decade after his death.
I’m sure this is a potetial nightmare for companies; I’m quite certain many people might be reduced to tears or angry at receiving a new credit card for their deceased loved one. Having some experience in direct mail, I know those lists often “roll over” for years at a time. As for Macy’s, perhaps they didn’t get my note that my mother had gone on to “the big 12-hour-sale in the sky.” No, I didn’t really write that. My mom would have, but I did not.
So, Dear Macy’s … Thanks for a laugh and fond memories of my mom. Certainly, some of our most enjoyable times were spent shopping together, and your offer prompted me to recall those fondly. And on her behalf, thanks for the new American Express Macy’s card, but she won’t be needing it. As a side note, while searching for an image for this blog, I did visit your Facebook page which is VERY nice, and as usual, your holiday ads are shaping up nicely. I’ll cut up the card, but keep the blue sky image. It makes me smile.
Another busy day on tap … creating a communications plan for our newest client and following up on the “to-do list” for this week. For the record, I’m thinking about boycotting TV until after the election. Why is everyone shouting?