This guest post was written by my daughter, Aimee Lucido, who was recently initiated into the real world by the Wicker Park post office.
Seriously, if you compare the yelp reviews of the Chicago post office and the reviews of the Chicago DMV, the results are shocking. And honestly, I’m not surprised at the God-awful reviews that the Wicker Park post office is getting because I have had the most heinous two weeks dealing with them. Here is my story.
It was a dark and stormy afternoon in Chicago, Illinois. The sky was a dark, foreboding gray, the air was as sticky as a little kid’s fingers, and all the local newscasters were predicting the same thing: rain.
Basically it would take an idiot, or a government employee, to do something moronic like leave two packages out in the open air for an afternoon. So imagine my surprise when I come home from dinner with my family to find two packages sitting on our back porch completely drenched. See, we had been out when they were delivered, so, naturally, the mailman threw the packages over our seven-foot fence into our backyard and left them to sit in the open air while it rained for four straight hours.
The contents of the packages were books, and I use the past tense here literally. They are no longer books because they were completely destroyed.
Thus began my two-week-long debacle with the Wicker Park post office.
A bit of background about me: I’m a new graduate from Brown University, and until recently my parents have dealt with administrative shit like this for me. But now, I’ve graduated. I have a job with a 401(k) and medical insurance, and I’m supposed to be a real person, or something like that. As my father keeps saying: Welcome to the real world, Aimee.
The rainstorm happened on a Saturday, so it wasn’t until Monday that I was able to call the 800-number and complain to a real flesh-and-blood person. When I told the person what happened, she responded by saying, “I do apologize for that ma’am. I will put in a request for an investigator to contact you, and you should hear from him within the next 24 hours.”
Instead of a phone call, what I got was a pink “Sorry we missed you!” slip on my mailbox that evening, because my house had been empty between 6:00 PM and 6:20 PM. Turns out the other packages I had shipped to myself had also arrived at the Wicker Park post office, but they were waiting to deliver them until we were out of the house. But they were too heavy to be thrown over my gate, so they left a note instead. Besides, what was the point of leaving them for me if it wasn’t raining?
The next day was Tuesday. I called the 800-number again and told them that I never got a call from the investigator. They said “I do apologize for that, ma’am, I will put in another report right now and they will get back to you within the next 24 hours.”
The next day was Wednesday. I thought “maybe when they say within the next 24 hours, they mean the next 24 hours starting after these 24 hours.” So I figured, why not give the investigator another day to call me. It couldn’t hurt.
So instead of once again requesting a call from the investigator, when I called the 800-number on Wednesday I only put in a request for a redelivery of my packages for Friday.
I spent the remainder of that day sitting on my ass, afraid to leave the house or even get into the shower for fear that the moment I turned the water on I would get a phone call from the investigator, or the mailman would arrive with my packages. But, of course, no such luck. Still no packages, still no investigator, and still no shower.
So Thursday rolls around and still no call from the investigator, but I couldn’t do anything about it because I was out for the day. I know, right? Shocking that I may have something better to do than to wait for deliveries from 9-5 (excuse me, 9-6:30) on a Thursday.
And then Friday comes and I still didn’t get a call, so I called the 800-number again and I told customer service that I, once again, never got a call from the investigator. They said, “I do apologize for that, ma’am, and I will put in another report right now and they should get back to you within the next 24 hours.” But this time instead of saying “Thank you” and hanging up, I said, “What do I do when they inevitably don’t call me back?” The woman on the other end said, “Well, honestly, I recommend that you call the Chicago customer service desk. They may be able to handle your case more specifically.” Then she gave me the number and I hung up.
So I called that number. And then I turned on the new season of Arrested Development and sat and watched while I heard the same shitty hold music for over an hour without ever getting linked to a person.
Finally I gave up and decided to call the Wicker Park post office. Here is how that conversation went:Her: asaweroufbaewroiu Me: What? Her: wlkdfhnpdkfnspoerj Me: I cannot understand you at all. Are you on speaker phone? Her: alsjdfhaweoriskdfjkjlaskdljf Me: What? I really cannot understand you. Are you sure you aren’t on speaker phone? Her: (getting off speaker phone) No ma’am, I was not on speaker phone. Now what can I help you with today? Me: Well the other day I had my packages delivered to my house, and the mailman threw them over the gate and left them out in the rain for the day. The entire contents were ruined. Her: I do apologize for that, ma’am, and I will put in a report right now and they should get back to you within 24 hours. Me: Okay, fine, but what do I do when they don’t call me back? Her: They will call you back. Me: All right, fine, but if I don’t hear from them by Tuesday I’m going to come down there and you’re going to have to deal with me in person. [dial tone] Me: BITCH!
So by this point, I’m contemplating going down there with a hose and spraying their computers until they’re spitting sparks and then saying “Now we’re even!” But my father informed me that this will get me arrested. I rebutted by saying that getting arrested for protesting is fashionable now, and all the cool kids have spent at least one night in jail for important causes like divesting in coal or taking down the post office. He assured me that this was not even a little bit true.
So I concocted a plan. Once I get these packages, even if it means making six trips to the post office on a Saturday afternoon, I will stop credit card payments on my post office charges. I will refuse to pay the $350 that I put on my credit card because when I paid $350, I was paying for my packages to get delivered to me dry and on-time. Not ruined and two weeks late.
But first I have to get the rest of my packages.
So I waited. I waited through the rest of my Friday, Saturday, (enjoy a glorious day off from waiting on Sunday), and Monday. On Monday we called the Wicker Park post office and were assured by the supervisor Al Davis that we will get the packages either Monday or Tuesday. And we continue to wait Monday and Tuesday with no luck (et tu, Al Davis?? ET TU??). And finally on Wednesday we receive half the shipment, and on Thursday the other half.
At which point I promptly called Chase and told them to reject the charges from the United States Post Office.
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