September 2006 Archives

Going Postal

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Ahh, our wonderful post office.

I've had a PO Box for some time; I use it to receive magazine subscriptions, automotive news, and internet-related stuff (hosting invoices, registrations, etc). From day 1, I've received other people's mail in my PO Box, and not just junk mail, but credit card statements, medical bills, etc. These pieces of mail have the old box holders names and my PO Box address.

When I would receive these pieces of mail, I'd write on them, "PERSON NO LONGER AT THIS ADDRESS, PLEASE CORRECT ADDRESS. RETURN TO SENDER," take them outside to the drive-through mail box, and "mail" them again. And it would never fail that I'd receive that very same piece of mail again, and sometimes even two or three more times before it apparently went back to the sender.

I've taken mail to the front counter a few times to alert them that I shouldn't be receiving Theresa K-----n's medical bills, nor should I be receiving Wendy R--s's credit card statements. The clerk would take the mail and explain that the old box holder never "closed out their box properly." Whatever.


So, I hadn't been to my PO Box for a few months, and I decided to check it last weekend. Opened it up and found nothing. That's odd... normally there's a few Car & Drivers, and a few MPG or IMPA newsletters. So, I went in today, and asked about my PO Box.

"Your box has been closed. The rent was due on August 31, and it wasn't paid," said the lady. What?!

"Ok, well, I'd like to renew it. I didn't realize it came due on 8/31 - I thought it came due in September or October," I said.

"Well, the box is closed, so you can't renew it. You can apply for a new box if you'd like, and there's a chance you might get that one back."

I said, "But my key still works - I just used it a second ago, and it works. Can't I rent that box? I've had it for at least 3-4 years."

"No sir, it's not available. You'll have to re-apply."

Ridiculous! So I asked why it was closed so soon - just 18 days after payment was due, and she said, "We close them after 10 days of inactivity."

Wow. I told her to keep the crummy box and that I'd go buy a box from the UPS Store or someone like that. Now my only question is, who's going to get my magazines and newsletters? I'm sure they'll be delivered to that person for at least a few months... I mean, if I received people's credit card statements and medical bills for months, surely Car & Driver shouldn't be any different.

In other news... I'll be on the company jet again this week for a day trip to Little Rock, followed by a 3 day trip to San Antonio next week. Should be fun.