Sunday, October 10, 2004

A Frivolous Response

I was engaged yesterday in paying for merchandise I had won on Ebay, and the seller, located 2,400 miles away, requested that a check or money order be received via US Mail by Monday, essentially one mail day after bidding closed on the item.

I received an email from the seller, signed Stacey, wondering where her check was. She needed it to arrive immediately. I suppose she was in dire need of the $3.05 I owed her. Out of courtesy and for reasons of protecting this troubled woman's privacy, I have not reproduced her email to me. I am, however, posting my own excessive and frivolous response, for what it's worth:


I am at a loss to understand why you would pounce upon me so crossly; I am stung by your words. I am sorry that you are so angry. I wish that I could help in some fashion. Send you an Ethiopia Yergacheffe.

Of course I have made payment. I am not without honour.

Yet I am not surprised that you have not received it; I have only just tended it to the United States Postal Service. But I wanted to alert you that that your customer HAS MAILED PAYMENT to the address you provided, although if you are expecting to arrive by Monday, October 11th, you have been undoubtedly misled by what one might assume to be opponents of the United States Postal Service.

This is how the envelope was addressed:

[Last Name and Address Withheld]
Deerfield, NH

The envelope was printed for the sake of clarity, as opposed to handwritten. I read somewhere that the postal service machines can read zip codes printed on envelopes more easily than those that are handwritten.

Do you know your "plus four?" Juan asked me about that. If you knew your "plus four." I do not know your "plus four." Why would I? Juan only laughed. “Ha ha.”

PLEASE ADVISE AS SOON AS POSSIBLE IF YOU DO NOT ACCEPT PAYMENT BY U.S. MAIL. If this is indeed the case, I do not know what to do; ring up the Postmaster I suppose and plead my case to have the envelope returned. There are courier services out there, and I suppose FedEx, options I could explore if you force me in that direction. My Uncle Mortimer refused to accept anything from the U.S. Postal Service his entire life. He was picked up by the Dekalb County Sheriff's Department twice in his adult life for failing to appear for jury duty.

You post in your listing that you accept money orders, but there is nothing in there about not accepting mail. Standard mail will take many days; priority mail takes three or so days. I paid for First Class Mail, which is a registered trademark of the United States Postal Service. The envelope is on its way to you in Deerfield, although even with First Class TM postage affixed, my mail carrier, Juan, assures me that it will not arrive by the 11th of October. "You confuse with those other guy," he mumbled to me yesterday out by the mailbox in his customary broken English. "Ha ha."

Your demands have shaken me in ways I prefer not to be shaken; indeed they are a bitter pill to swallow. But I digress.

I can only hope and pray that my money order sent First Class TM via the U.S. Postal Service is sufficient. I will make inquiries with a friend who is a Postal Inspector in Wichita, to see what he can do about moving this thing along. I figure Wichita is about half way to you, maybe not quite half way. There is a place near I-70 near Garden City there that makes the most succulent potato cake I have ever tasted. If you are ever through there, stop in. It's called The Moses House. Ask for Duke.

Do you like potato cakes?

I will close with the words of L.A. real estate developer Dominick McSwain, spoken to the House Un-American Activities Committee in 1947, "How about a little smile, comrades? Hides the wrinkles." (The quote has often been misattributed to Bertolt Brecht.)

Sign me,
Distraught in Seattle

1 comment:

Jayuff said...

you make me laugh. I hope all is well in the north. Thanks for the humor.
Jeff Stilwell