August 15, 2009
I had a tantrum this week over something so minor I am ashamed to admit it publicly. I mailed a CD of reunion trip pictures to Joan last Saturday. Tuesday it was returned due to insufficient postage. What? I’d weighed it and put what I thought was extra postage on because we didn’t have any second ounce stamps. But no, the label demanded 20 more cents because it was a “large envelope”. It never occurred to me that 7 inches by 9 inches was considered large for an envelope. For a cellphone or an ipod , yes, that would be large, but for an envelope, no. We sure didn’t have any 20 cent stamps, so I found an old 41 cent-er . It was not sticky enough to attach well on its own, so I tried gluing it, but even that seemed not too secure, so I taped it on with clear tape. (Those of you who know USPS regs are no doubt chuckling to yourselves right now, but I was woefully ignorant at that point.) I put the oh so large envelope back in the mail on Wednesday. Thursday it was back at our house with two demerit stickers on itâ€”a new 20 cents insufficient postage notice and a stern warning about stamps being void when coated, covered, taped, defaced, or reused (mutilating, bending, folding, and spindling were implied, I think). Now, at the time I saw this I was tired and hungry and stressed, but none of that is a good excuse for what happened next. I lost my shit. (Not literally.) I yelled. I cursed. I threw the envelope across the room. I fumed. I told Mr. Karen he needed to deal with it because I was just done. I ranted. He retrieved the envelope from where I’d thrown it and put it out of sight. I ranted some more. I demanded the infuriating object back. I stomped upstairs and ripped the envelope to shreds (destroying all three stamps in the processâ€”oh I mutilated them all right). I chose I new, non-large envelope, put the contents inside, and addressed it, but did not even attempt to apply postage. I went back downstairs and apologized to Mr. Karen, giving him the stampless envelope. He took it to the post office yesterday, where they asked him approximately 4 thousand questions (is it hazardous? fragile? did he want insurance? delivery confirmation? overnight service? etc.) before charging him $1.36 to mail it first class. What? They only wanted $1.05 when it was in a large envelope. I give up. Next time I’m zipping the files up and e-mailing them. I’m sure Joan can learn to use WinZip or something similar.