The graphic above is a scan of a direct mail card for the "Apple Tree Children's Centers" in South Dakota.
The copy invites us to "...come see why your friends and neighbors choose Apple Tree..." and goes on to offer us $10 for "ice cream treats" after we've taken a tour.
"Ten bucks?!" you exclaim!
Sweet jimminy - if the Apple Tree folk are right, $10 is just the beginning because - and this comes from the first line of copy - "Your children are your most valuable investment."
(time machine way-back sfx) dooodleoodledoodleoodle
I remember when our first came into the world - looking at that squigling, wriggling bundle of cells, the first tender cry, bewildered eyes, tiny clenched fists... but I don't remember, "Honey! We have an investment!"
I could be wrong in my cynicism. Look at the success of the Lohans, the Spears and the Jacksons. They made gajillions! Obviously, their investment paid off.
"Honey, how did Suzie do today?"
"Well, she's up two and quarter, but overall down from yesterday's high of fifteen."
"Dangit! I'm not pumping another dime of ice cream into that investment until it turns around!"
"Maybe we diversify and get a dog?"