Wednesday, December 3, 2008

A New Box

Right before Thanksgiving, I opened my front door to see a note taped up that read: "Your mailbox is being changed on Tuesday, November 25th." Now, honestly, what kind of sick individual decides to do this right before a major holiday? It went on to say "Please continue to use the old mailbox. Your HOA president will have the keys to the new mailbox as soon as they are released from the post office."

Now all of that sounds good until you realize that John and I are renting and technically can't collect the new mailbox keys. But getting a hold of our landlords Mr. and Mrs. F is difficult at best. So I've been calling the number on the note to try and get more information on how we can get the keys. Especially after John came home last night and checked the old mailbox only to find we had no mail (with all the junk magazines out for the holidays we knew that meant the new box had taken affect).

I called the number and got an answering machine every time. Then tonight before John got home there was a frantic knock and several rings on our doorbell. Eric was in his high chair, and while I hated leaving him, I dropped a couple of munchies on his tray and headed to the door.

Two older women were standing outside. "We have your new mailbox keys."
"Great!" I answer. I'm actually relieved that I don't have to go track these people down.
"Can we come in?" one of the women asks. "You know, you really should have your outside light on."

I bite my tongue as I was taught not to be rude to the elderly. I mean, taking care of a toddler every freaking day I'm lucky if I can shower, let alone remember to turn the damn porch light on. The women sit down, drop their heavy duty flashlights on our coffee table, and bring out a pouch of golden mailbox keys, three keys on each cheap silver keyring.

"Mr. and Mrs F?" one of the women asks.

NOW, here is where Jen fudges a little. I was afraid to mention that John and I are not Mr. and Mrs. F, that we are in fact renting, because I was afraid these over-important, elderly versions of Selma and Patty would deny us our keys until after we contacted our landlord. So I repeated the last name of our landlord back to them, pronounced correctly, never actually mentioning that I wasn't Mrs. F. Sneaky, I know.

Then the women present me with the golden keys. I had to initial for them (I initialed very quickly... as Mrs. F's first name begins with an "R" and I didn't want the "JL" to look like a "JL."

As the women were closing up their documents, one of them asks me for an email address. And because I'm an idiot, I say 'yes.' Anyone who knows me understands how predictable I am- right down to my email addresses at yahoo, gmail, and hotmail. It's my first and last name combined. So I spell out "j-e-n-l-o-i-z-e-a-u-x."

The woman writing this down gives me a look.

I shrug and say "It cuts down on spam."
She smiles. "I can appreciate that."

And they finally left.

God, can you BELIEVE that?

Anyway, after John comes home, I show him the new keys and put one on my keychain. Since I need to make a grocery store run (doesn't everyone spend way too much money on groceries? It's one of my pet peeves... and I use coupons and buy most stuff on sale!), I decide to be the first one to check the mail.

I head out to the new mailbox. It's cold, windy, and 9pm at night. The first thing I notice about the new mailbox is that we now have an "outgoing mail" slot. This means I don't have to walk to the mailbox up the street to mail a letter. This is a good thing.

The second thing I notice is that the numbers are completely different, and I have no idea which mailbox is ours. So I use my key on every number. I go through all 16 before I realize that I'm not putting the stupid key in all the way. So now I start putting my key in starting with number 16, jiggling it when it gets stuck, and working my way to number 1. And you can probably guess which mailbox was ours. No, not number 1. It's Number 2. So after hauling out about 20 magazines and various pieces of junk mail from our number 2 box, I trek back to the house.

I put the mail on the coffee table and tell John about how the boxes are now labeled differently, and that it took me awhile to figure out which mailbox was ours.

John picks up the remaining set of mailbox keys from the table and, with a smirk, points to a sticker on one of the keys that says "#2" in plain English.

This is where I do what any good wife would do: I give my husband the finger (he laughed, at least I think he did). :-)

Then I promptly head to the grocery store where I can enjoy an hour of shopping without a baby in tow, even if it is for groceries.

(I know this was a long and drawn-out story, but honestly, my life is so dull... I figure if I don't mention the highlights of my day, I'll have nothing to write about.)


Anonymous said...

Exactly how does a fake name on your e-mail cut down on spam? Huh? Old people...sigh.

Jen said...

lol. I was just happy I thought of something witty in 2 seconds! Esp. with mommy AND preggo brain!

PG said...

One way to cut down on spam: use only gmail (which has a good spam filter) and when you have to give your email address for anything commercial (e.g. ordering stuff online), put it as [firstname][dot][lastname] You can set up the gmail to filter anything that goes to the first.last address separately from your undotted email. It's all in one account, but you can have a "first tier" inbox with email from real people, and save your "second tier" folder of email from folks who only know the "dot" address to be checked when you have lots of spare time or know that you have a commercial email you want to receive.