For some reason, Facebook is recommending Birmingham City FC to a friend of mine who lives in Cardiff, and who supports Brighton and Hove Albion. Slightly random, but at least he watches football. I wish that the adverts they put on my pages were as well targeted. At the moment I have an advert for a Greek taverna in Birkenhead. Don’t get me wrong, Greek food’s okay, but not special, and I like to keep my crockery for tomorrow, with just a sojourn in the dishwasher in between, instead of smashing it against the wall and having to sweep it up. Not to mention the trip to whatever-has-replaced-Habitat to buy a new lot. Birkenhead isn’t really what you’d call just round the corner, either. I only know where it is because it was where a boy I was at school with came from (I’ve never been there).
However, compared with some of the adverts, a Greek taverna in Birkenhead for someone who lives in Cornwall is bang on the money. As is the advert for Cornish Cottage Holidays. It’s just possible that I might fancy a bit of a getaway, and not be bothered to pack, so that I could pop home for some clean clothes every day. Or the very tasteful Sun Life Direct ‘Looking for a no fuss way to pay for your funeral’. I’m definitely still breathing, and unless Sun Life Direct and Facebook know something I don’t, that disqualifies me from having a funeral.
I could win a year’s supply of Twinings English Breakfast Tea, which I dislike, or I could pay £38 a month for a new boiler with full cover. My (perfectly okay and functioning) boiler has a little sticker which (very sensibly) reads ‘Do not cover’. I can buy a curry from Marks and Spencer, which would be ‘Perfect for celebrating National Curry Week’. I’ve never heard of National Curry Week, and if I wanted to celebrate it I’d go to Little India in Penzance, instead of trailing all the way to Hayle to find that Marks and Spencer was closed at that time of night. I suspect that the curry from Little India is probably slightly more authentic than Marks’s, too, but maybe I’m just being an elderly stick-in-the-mud. Hence the need for a life insurance quote (also from the very solicitous Sun Life Direct) in less than 60 seconds, before I have time to shuffle off this mortal coil, leaving my heirs and assigns the fuss of paying for my funeral.
Then there are the colostomy bags. If I had a colostomy, I might appreciate adverts for colostomy bags, but as I haven’t, I can’t say that I do. I do know a woman who has a colostomy, so perhaps they’re for her. However, she isn’t someone I buy Christmas presents for, and even if she were, I doubt she’d be pleased to unwrap a nice shiny new colostomy bag on Christmas morning. “Ooh, Francis. You do know how to make a girl feel special.” She is special, but that isn’t why.
Facebook did get a little warmer with the discreet male catheter, though the catheter I had stuck up my willie after my kidney op was anything but discreet, trailing down to a bucket of blood on the floor beside my bed (see The Surgical Admissions Lounge for details). Maybe that was because I hadn’t heeded the Facebook ads and paid for my own, cheapskate that I am. I reckon I could probably fashion some sort of bagpipe from a colostomy bag and some discreet male catheters, so perhaps the next batch of promotions will be for books telling me how to make my own musical instruments.
There have been a few interesting adverts, however. For example, local women over fifty who are keen to meet me. There have even been adverts for hotels (Ibis, Accor, etc) where I could go for trysts with these women over fifty (though if they’re really local, perhaps we’d do better with a cottage from Cornish Cottage Holidays). I don’t know if there’s an Ibis hotel in Birkenhead, and the woman in the picture didn’t look to be anything like fifty, but hey, it has to be more fun than making musical instruments out of colostomy bags and catheters, and more exciting than Birmingham City FC.