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… was a gingham summer dress I’m still not sure about and my Velcro Teva sandals, the kind of footwear favoured by back-to-the-land hippy types as well as senior citizens on a tour of the Holy Land.

Now that’s a Venn diagram to keep marketers on their toes.

I bought the gingham-dress-I’m-still-not-sure-about at the supermarket. It cost me £11.99. At the time, every aspect of this transaction seemed irresistible: the idea you could go into a supermarket to buy bananas and toilet paper and fulfil your wardrobe needs. That you could buy a gingham summer dress for £11.99, and that you could leave a supermarket with toilet paper, bananas and a gingham summer dress and still not have broken a twenty.

I get a little overexcited in supermarkets.

The problem, though, is by the time you get home and have calmed down a little, you realize you’ve spent £11.99 on a garment that looks like it cost £11.99.

I’ve got to stop buying supermarket dresses.

As a result, the gingham-dress-I’m-still-not-sure-about has been demoted to what I wear when I’m home alone and noodling around on my desktop Mac, which is what I was doing a couple of nights ago when I received a very creepy piece of spam:

A sex blackmail email.

The email said that unless I transferred £700, in Bitcoins no less, to a certain URL account, my history as a frequenter of porn sites, along with webcam videos of my, well, sex romps would be posted all over social media.

Who knew I led such an exciting, sordid life?

Or that I was so technologically adept? I can barely connect to Facetime, let alone interact with a porn site.

The next day, a second sex blackmail email came in, this one demanding £7,000.

It was turning into a bidding war.

Irrationally – because this is probably the time to point out there are in fact no sex tapes and no sleazy browsing history — I couldn’t help but feel a little surge of pride, as in, Hot stuff! I’m going up in value.

The tone of both emails was a combination of leering and menacing. Leering in that I was complemented on my taste in erotica. Menacing because an old password of mine was cited with the suggestion of access to others. The message was so targeted, so familiar and chatty that I had to stop and take a few seconds to think, probe the recesses of my mind. Did I do this? Did I actually go to some seedy site one winter night and then forget about it?  Had I brain blocked a whole series of Internet porn sessions?


Hand on heart, eyes on Safari history, I can say there is no truth to these allegations.

But it did get me thinking about issues of supply and demand. This kind of blackmail spam is created and disseminated on the back of technologically sophisticated, research-based algorithms. The sender undoubtedly has a mine of information about me – old passwords, contacts, Facebook activity. This means he/she/it has to have some idea of when I was born, must know I’m not a kid, but, rather, une femme d’un certain age.

Which in turn made me think if they’re targeting meaccusing me of having made sex tapes they’re threatening to put out there, then they must think someone out there wants to watch this stuff; that there are viewers interested in the sex antics of what I’ll call an age-inappropriate performer.

In other words, according to my blackmailer – and who better than a blackmailer to know what’s selling — there’s a potential new audience out there: an untapped market for an as yet untapped pool of talent.

I’m talking Elder Porn.

I’m saying the time is right for us middle-aged-plus members of the baby boomer generation to barge our way into the adult entertainment industry and make it our own.

I have a few ideas.

For example, in an Elder Porn movie, typical porn movie dialogue (not that I’m entirely sure what constitutes typical porn movie dialogue because, as I can’t stress enough, I don’t frequent porn sites) could be punctuated with exclamations like, Ow, ow, my back, and Hang on, my knee’s giving out, culminating, at a key point in the action, with the impassioned cry of, Hey! Are you asleep?

We could even throw in a couple of supermarket scenes, episodes of overexcitement in the leisurewear aisle.

Obviously, there’s a lot to work out, but before I start the process of Elder Porn crowd funding, I want to thank my blackmailers for nudging me into a whole new career direction. No doubt they’ll be the first to demand residuals when my inaugural feature, Pension Babes, breaks all box office records.