May 29, 2009

My Goddamned Mail: The Rest of the Story.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 10:13 pm

This is a follow-up to the post below.

This morning, as promised, shortly after the local post office opened, I was standing before the special place where one must stand to get “held mail.” It is not manned by anyone; rather one must push a button for “service.” (The section of the post office where the regular walk-up windows are is locked until 10:00 a.m.). The morning hours for “service” at this window are 7:00 – 9:00 a.m. Good thing I was there about 8:20.

I pushed the button, and a voice came from a speaker saying, “Can I help you?” Fortunately, I had mentally rehearsed a super-condensed version of the facts, as I knew I would not have anyone’s attention for very long. It sounded something like this: “MymailwasheldwhileIwasonvacation; it was supposedtobedeliveredonSaturday; itwasn’tdeliveredthenanditstillhasnotbeendelivered,despitethreephonecallstothe800numberandonecalltothispostofficeyesterday!”

After I made my run-on speech, there was no response; the speaker box was silent. I felt as if I were in Oz asking for an audience with the Wizard.

To my surprise, a person (the source of the voice) actually appeared and listened to my story.

“You did this online?”

“Yes, I did. Apparently the communications sent to the local post office from the 800 number don’t register here.”

He said, in a very nice way, “It’s better if you deal directly with the local post office. Who knows what kind of red tape they have there.” He then said, “You’ll have to talk to the Carrier Supervisor, but he won’t be here for another fifteen minutes. Would you like to wait, or do you want to call later?”

I said, very calmly, “I’ll wait. In fact, I am not leaving until I get my mail, or someone tells me exactly where it is and when it will be delivered.” I pointed out that I had already spoken by phone with a person who was identified to me as the “Carrier Supervisor,” and his name was “Jim.”

“Nah, he’s not The Carrier Supervisor. His name is ‘Tom’.”

I asked, would he please tell “Tom” as soon as he arrives that I am waiting to see him. He assured me that he would. He then asked for my address, and wrote it on his hand with a ballpoint pen. Then he asked me my name. That, he didn’t write on his hand, apparently having committed it to memory.

The promised fifteen minutes turned into twenty-five minutes, and the guy who was supposed to direct “Tom” to me, apparently took pity on me, because he appeared again and said, “I’m going upstairs to check on your situation myself.” (I guess “Tom” plays loose with his hours.)

About four minutes later, he appeared with a large box full of mail. “Here’s your mail. I went directly to the carrier [who obviously had not started on his route yet]; he knew all about it.”

After a bit of questioning on my part, it seemed clear that the carrier was aware of the start date of the mail-hold, but didn’t know of the end-date, or was given the wrong end date. The latter is more likely, because my new post office friend asked if I wanted my mail delivery resumed.

Did I want my mail delivery resumed? WTF? It’s difficult to imagine how anyone could have listened to me and concluded that I didn’t wan my mail delivery resumed. It was an “Alice in Wonderland” moment.

Still, I was so happy to have a box of mail in my hand, I simply thanked my new post office friend and motored off to work.

Here’s the clincher: When I arrived home from work, there was a message on the answering machine with a timestamp of 4:41 p.m. “This is the So and So Post Office. You made a complaint? You can call back at [gives phone number].” The monotone-speaking drone was obviously calling as a follow-up to my call to the 800 number made on WEDNESDAY!~ (I hadn’t given the Thursday 800 Number Lady my phone number). Here it is Friday goddamned evening and this idiot is calling me based upon a call I made Wednesday morning.

One thing is for shit sure. Had I not gone to the post office myself today, there would have been no goddamned mail delivery again today.

I have no plans to return the monotone-speaking idiot’s call. I’ve spent enough goddamned time on the phone trying to get my goddamned mail.

The next time we go away, I will personally deal with the mail carrier and follow-up by filling out the appropriate form at the local post office.

Then again, maybe I’ll just ask a friend to pick up my mail.

Powered by WordPress