Pretty Good Article
Wish I’d thought of this!
Elder Banking… !
Shown below, is an actual letter that was sent to a bank by an 86
year old woman.
The bank manager thought it amusing enough to have it published in
the New York Times.
I am writing to thank you for bouncing my check with which
I endeavoured to pay my plumber last month.
By my calculations, three nanoseconds must have elapsed
between his presenting the check and the arrival in my account of the
funds needed to honour it..
I refer, of course, to the automatic monthly deposit of my
entire pension, an arrangement which, I admit, has been in place for
only eight years.
You are to be commended for seizing that brief window of
opportunity, and also for debiting my account $30 by way of penalty
for the inconvenience caused to your bank.
My thankfulness springs from the manner in which this
incident has caused me to rethink my errant financial ways. I noticed
that whereas I personally answer your telephone calls and letters,
— when I try to contact you, I am confronted by the impersonal,
overcharging, pre-recorded, faceless entity which your bank has
From now on, I, like you, choose only to deal with a
My mortgage and loan repayments will therefore and
hereafter no longer be automatic, but will arrive at your bank, by
check, addressed personally and confidentially to an employee at your
bank whom you must nominate.
Be aware that it is an OFFENCE under the Postal Act for any
other person to open such an envelope.
Please find attached an Application Contact which I require
your chosen employee to complete.
I am sorry it runs to eight pages, but in order that I know
as much about him or her as your bank knows about me, there is no
Please note that all copies of his or her medical history
must be countersigned by a Notary Public, and the mandatory details
of his/her financial situation (income, debts, assets and
liabilities) must be accompanied by documented proof.
In due course, at MY convenience, I will issue your
employee with a PIN number which he/she must quote in dealings with
I regret that it cannot be shorter than 28 digits but,
again, I have modelled it on the number of button presses required of
me to access my account balance on your phone bank service.
As they say, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.
Let me level the playing field even further.
When you call me, press buttons as follows:
IMMEDIATELY AFTER DIALING, PRESS THE STAR (*) BUTTON FOR ENGLISH
#1. To make an appointment to see me
#2. To query a missing payment.
#3. To transfer the call to my living room in case I am there.
#4 To transfer the call to my bedroom in case I am sleeping.
#5. To transfer the call to my toilet in case I am
attending to nature.
#6. To transfer the call to my mobile phone if I am not at home.
#7. To leave a message on my computer, a password to access
my computer is required.
Password will be communicated to you at a later date to
that Authorized Contact mentioned earlier.
#8. To return to the main menu and to listen to options 1 through 10
#9. To make a general complaint or inquiry.
The contact will then be put on hold, pending the attention
of my automated answering service.
#10. This is a second reminder to press* for English.
While this may, on occasion, involve a lengthy wait,
uplifting music will play for the duration of the call.
Regrettably, but again following your example, I must also
levy an establishment fee to cover the setting up of this new
May I wish you a happy, if ever so slightly less
prosperous, New Year?
Your Humble Client
And remember: Don’t make old people mad. We don’t like
being old in the first place, so it doesn’t take much to …. us off.