I Know Why The US Post Office Is Going Down
The USPS is going down because they hate their customers. It’s true, read on for the evidence.
This story starts with a sweet reader who bought some of the cutlery pens leftover from when A Lovely Thing was an eshop. There are a few more available; you’ll find the link ~~> over there on the sidebar if you’re interested. That sweet customer also bought my book! That link’s over there, too.
So, I packaged the pens she selected, carefully wrapping them in bubble wrap so they wouldn’t bounce around. Printed out a label, taped it all up and, on my way in to work, dropped off the package at the U.S. Post Office that is right across from my day job. Yes, it
is a was very handy location.
Apparently, my package looked like a football and was used for punting practice. It had been opened, too. The bubble wrap was ripped. The pens jingled around loosely in the box that was returned to me a full week later. Look at the box again.
It’s priority mail, for Pete’s sake!
It was returned for more postage. I had printed a label for a flat rate box. This clearly isn’t a flat rate box. My mistake. I own up to it. Is that an excuse to kick it around? I guess it was necessary to teach the cheating customer a lesson. Never mind that I’ve been shipping priority mail since it became available and never had a problem like this before.
And maybe the post office is sensitive to contraband in the mail and had to check the contents. That’s fine. With everything going on in the world, I’m cool with security. But when they find that the contents are benign, can they wrap it back properly?
Anyone who has had to contact a customer with bad news knows the sick feeling you get in your stomach. I had to email my sweet customer that the pens she expected in four days were back at my door. She had every right to be ticked off, but she wasn’t. That’s why I call her a sweet customer!
Fortunately, the pens weren’t damaged. I repackaged them and took them to the post office early next morning. I took the beat up box with me. As angry as I was, I was polite. The last thing I wanted was for the crisp new package to be stomped on, again.
The clerk looked at the crumpled box and then at me like “what do you want me to do about it?”. The man had surly, defensive attitude. When I asked about the postage already paid, he said it went to it’s destination and the other end sent it back for postage due.
Are you freaking kidding me? I wanted to scream. It got to my customer’s door and was sent back for a few bucks!?
Another clerk stepped in. He said that the label can be reused if I cut it off and put it on the crisp new package. Okay. I asked for scissors. Begrudgingly the first clerk dug one out of his drawer.
Then, I needed tape to attach it to the new package. “We don’t supply tape,” said a third clerk. He must have sensed that I was about to blow, because the second clerk handed me a tape dispenser.
While I cut and taped, I asked whether USPS had a system where customers can put a credit card on file to be billed for postage due so this wouldn’t happen again. All three clerks laughed at my question. I thought it was a great idea.
I put the label on, paid the extra postage and quietly left. Again, I was afraid my package would be taken in the back and punt kicked if I said one thing wrong. That’s a terrible way for a customer to feel, isn’t it? But I bet I’m not the only one.
And THEY NEVER ONCE APOLOGIZED for the condition of the box.
As I started my car and drove away, my angry mind vowed never to use USPS again. After all, the UPS store is right next door.