Where are the Centenarians in Apple Commercials?

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About ten years ago I was helping a retired couple use their desktop Macintosh computer. After I had helped them with their desktop computer, the wife asks her husband, "Why don't we show him the kidney Powerbook? Maybe he can answer some questions about that computer."

My curiosity got the better of me and I asked, "Do you mind if I ask why you call that laptop the "kidney Powerbook?" The wife lets out a chuckle and explained, "My husband donated one of his kidneys to his sister. She asked him what he'd like in return. Without hesitation, he said, 'I'd love a Powerbook.'"

If you don't use Macintosh computers you might not understand why someone would trade a kidney for a Mac laptop. If you do use Macs, that kind of trade makes perfect sense.

This retired couple were in their 70s, which brings me to the question: "How come we don't see older folks in Apple commercials? And why don't we learn more about the centenarians who love Macs?" Those folks have some stories to tell. You don't think there are many Mac-using centenarians? Think again. People are living longer, and one of the things that brings great enjoyment to life is a Mac. If you're over 100 years old and you want to buy a computer, chances are overwhelmingly high that you'll be buying a Mac. Why? Quality of life.

Back in the old days, it wasn't that common to live to be 90. These days a large number of families count an aunt or uncle in their 90s. Nobody I know of has done a study of how many Mac-using 90-year-olds there are in the United States, but let me give you my unofficial estimate: Lots.

And it's time that Apple started including them in commercials because their stories are worth hearing. The International Center on Longevity predicts almost a million centenarians in the United States in the year 2050. You can sell a lot of iPod Quantums to that group, especially to the repeat buyers.

Where do you find a list of notable centenarians? Right on the Internet. Have you heard of the Internet, dude?

Phil Shapiro

(The blogger is a hemi-centenarian who lives and works in the Washington DC-area. He can be reached at philshapiroblogger@gmail.com)

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