Til death do us part

A month and a half ago Jon and I applied for life insurance as part of an overall financial plan for our future — within two years we will have saved enough money to pay for 400 bags of Doritos, that is Goal Number One — and as part of the application process we both sent in checks to cover us for the month that we were applying. About two weeks later Jon got his check back in the mail from the life insurance company, what we thought was an indication that he had been rejected, and we both sort of shrugged it off as just another way in which the year 2006 has shoved its giant, ring-laden fist up our butts.

I apologize, Dad, for the offensiveness of that last sentence, it’s just, that sentiment sums up perfectly what the last nine or so months have felt like, and if you continue to read I promise not to use any more analogies involving anal penetration. Deal?

Two weeks after that I got my check from the insurance company back in the mail, except mine came with an accompanying explanation letter:

Thank you for your Ten Year Term insurance application. I regret to inform you that we cannot offer you a policy because of your history of depression and the results of your urinalysis.

This is exactly what I thought it would say, except I had hoped for maybe a conciliatory “if you die soon, which we fully expect to happen, it was at least fun to have read about all of your various illnesses.” My history of depression makes me ineligible for almost every type of insurance, but I didn’t really think that a urinary tract infection — what I had contracted the day the nurse from the insurance company collected urine samples — would make me ineligible for life insurance. I know there must be instances when someone has tragically died from a urinary tract infection, if left untreated it can travel up into the kidneys and wreak all sorts of havoc, but those of us who are prone to them know to take care of them immediately as it would be so totally lame to have an obituary that read FORGOT TO GO PEE AFTER HAVING INTERCOURSE.

Our financial adviser came over one evening last week to go over the life insurance situation, and I fully expected him to use this meeting to tell us, hey, look, y’all are nice people and all, but the only way I make money is if you apply and then QUALIFY for insurance, I’ve had better luck with car accident victims I found at the ER and some of them were missing limbs. But as soon as he sat down on our couch and broke open his briefcase, he pulled out a huge stack of sheets, handed them over to Jon and said, “Congratulations, here are all the terms and conditions for your life insurance policy.” Jon and I shared a quick, confused look, although mine was more along the lines of THIS MAKES NO SENSE whereas his was flavored a bit with YOU’RE NOT GOING TO KILL ME AND MAKE IT LOOK LIKE AN ACCIDENT, RIGHT?

Turns out that the check they sent Jon in the mail was a discount refund, discount because the results of his urinalysis coupled with his medical history make him an ideal candidate for life insurance. Except, not just ideal. He is so ideal for life insurance that he qualified for the Super Preferred monthly premium, a price half of what normal people pay. Super Preferred. They couldn’t have just stopped at preferred, no, that wouldn’t have been descriptive enough. I can imagine a meeting about this whole thing, all these old men in stuffy suits sitting around a large conference table, and the one in charge is all, I don’t know, I don’t think people will feel special enough if we just tell them that they are preferred, and we want them to feel special when they write us checks every month. What’s the word I’m looking for? More preferred? No, still not doing it for me. Exceedingly preferred? No, sounds too smart. Very preferred? A lot preferred? No longer just a little preferred?

A few things should be pointed out here, and I’m not saying any of these things because I am bitter, although I am a little bitter, anyone would be if they were the one in a relationship who works out three times a week, the one who doesn’t pour a half a cup of caramel topping into her mouth after those workouts, the one who doesn’t drink a six-pack of coca-cola as an afternoon snack, the one who stops after one cookie — do I need to keep going? I think this adequately proves my point — and I’M the one who gets rejected for life insurance? I haven’t even gotten to the part yet about how HE was the one who seduced ME that night three days before the urinary tract infection flared up. It was HIS equipment that did it to ME.

Our financial adviser noticed the speed with which my head spun off my neck and assured me that I’d most likely be able to apply for it again, not to worry. I pointed out that it was the injustice that was irking me so visibly, and that’s when Jon rested his hand on my thigh to calm me down. “This is the Universe’s way of rewarding me,” he said more to our financial adviser than to me. “A few months ago she cheated on a vaccination research form and was told by a nurse that her performance was better than mine.”

“That wasn’t cheating,” I clarified. “And besides, that was a vaccination study, not LIFE INSURANCE. If I die, Jon, you don’t get any money.”

He grinned evilly. “You can try to turn this around and make me feel bad about it, but deep down it burns you, IT TEARS YOU APART to know that I am the Valedictorian of Life Insurance and you aren’t.”