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Free Is The Best Four Letter Word and Other News

From Jodi Lipson in the front of the line as the Exhibit Hall opens:
Joyce Rittman from Apple Valley, Calif., was first in line at the Exhibit Hall, which opened at 10 a.m. "We wanted to get into United Health Care and get a massage," she says. "Free," she adds.
Of course free. Free is the watchword at the Exhibit Hall: a massage for Joyce. Hand wax followed by Theraband exercises (keep the band) for Regina Stierhoff from Columbus, Ohio. AARPers also snatched up the usual candy, keychains, and magnets, of course. Even tuna fish (yes, tuna fish, in foil packets), pill bottle openers, and video e-cards that you can send to those poor schlubs who you left at home while you came to Vegas to get free stuff. Those with more patience can stand in line to spin, Vegas-style, for Verizon playing cards or hand sanitzer, hip Jamaican black T-shirts, a Imperial Capitol Bankcorps' leather briefcase.
Fred Katen's motive for being at the front of the line was less materialistic. "I like to be first," says Katen, from Milford, Conn., "to take advantage of my retirement." There was plenty of information for that, too: retirement communities, cameras for watching your grandchildren grow up, high-tech beds to make you sleep better and shoes to help you walk easier.
Carolyn Kaskavitch from Piedmont, Mo., was more adventurous. Also at the front of the line, she was seeking volunteer vacations. "My niece went to England to do a dig," she says. "At my age, I don't want to dig." She was open to new opportunities. The travel corridor at the Exhibit Hall features booths from around the world, from Laughlin, Nev. (a small Las Vegas, the exhibitor explained to an AARP member who had never heard of it) to Ethiopia, with a table lined with packets of ground coffee. Free, of course.

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