While I was social media stalking my successful daughter Phoebe’s 20-something friend “Chloe,” I stumbled upon something called “Fans Only.” My daughter never mentioned anything about Chloe’s celebrity, so I couldn’t understand how her spacey high school friend had cultivated this community of admirers.
Chloe has always had a penchant for posting very revealing photos of herself. Sometimes these photos have strategically placed cherries and lollipops to cover choice bits of fleshy landscape—not the kind of thing my Phoebe would ever post, but I’m not one to judge. Chloe used to post these photos on her Instagram account, but lately she’s been posting pictures of herself fanning stacks of $20 bills and modeling expensive jewelry. How nice, I thought, she’s finally found a steady boyfriend with a decent job. That was until a recent post in which she mentioned that her “Fans Only” subscription rate was being discounted for a limited time. Could this be where Chloe was getting her money?
I thought about purchasing a subscription, if for no other reason than to validate my own parenting choices and outcomes. But even with the discount, Chloe’s charge was still too steep for my retirement budget. After taxes and the requisite Fancy Feast to dissuade Miles and Gomez from mutiny, my pension and Social Security don’t amount to much. When you factor in inflation and Phoebe’s student loans, I can barely afford a FrappuccinoⓇ at Frappy Hour, let alone another recurring charge.
Wondering if Chloe had a friends and family discount, I sent her a direct message through her Instagram account @ChloeXOXXX_official, but seeing no response for over a week, I thought I’d try a different approach.
“Hi Chloe!! Unfortunately, I cannot afford a subscription to your fan account, so I can’t see how you’ve set this business up for yourself. But it seems you’re really successful! I wonder if you could give me a call and walk me through the process. I’ve signed in with my Gmail account but now I’m a little confused. Are you available this week? I can treat you to a small frappuccino for your trouble! :-)”
Chloe read my message last Sunday at 2:16 a.m. On Wednesday, she was posting about a new bracelet and some kind of “hump day livestream,” so business must be booming. With all the time she spends on her phone, I thought she would have responded to me by now, but so far no luck.
Betty Boomer is trying her best to enjoy retirement. Her opinion writing has appeared on Facebook, Nextdoor, and beneath windshield wipers across the Sacramento area.