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January 12, 2010

DC USPS Fail Vent

I don't mean to be a grumpy butthead, but I have to take a moment to just vent and complain.

I'm very excited that my invitations got sent out yesterday, but it wasn't without some mishaps (which seem to ALWAYS happen to me with anything that is wedding related.). I was near tears and ready to punch someone in the face if my arms weren't full of invitations that were nicely organized in a box.

I had twittered the night before about asking for suggestions for a good USPS location in the downtown DC area... I know that most of the DC postal workers i've encountered AT the USPS were always just mean. You'd smile, say hello - ask how their day was... and mostly get grunts, or mumbles and hardly a smile. GENERALLY speaking... b/c i have had a few really nice people... but generally.  And some great people responded on twitter to give me a suggestion or two - THANK YOU GUYS!!!

Well my friend who was here for the weekend had to meet some friends at the Renaissance Hotel near Chinatown, so i decided i'd drive him and his bags and me and my invitations over since there was a USPS IN the hotel... two birds=one stone... always nice.

USPS on 9th St in Renaissance Hotel MR Level: MEAN MEAN MEAN!!!
Mean USPS lady #1: "We are NOT allowed to hand cancel here. The ONLY post office allowed to do that is the one at the postal museum on Mass Ave."
Me: "really? I know others that do it."
MEAN USPS lady #1: "Well, they aren't supposed to... only the one on Mass is equipped to do that."

So, I don't to argue - whatever... Annoyed, but figured, it wouldn't be easy. I had about 160 envelopes that needed to get hand cancelled.

Drive over to the one on Mass Ave, only to realize i have no cash on me and they still have coin meters there... OMG. PAIN IN MY BUTT! So i head home to get some change. While home, I check my internet and its slow/sketchy and hardly working. FREAK OUT!!! Call Comcast... WTH...

So now, I head back to the USPS in the Postal Museum... 5 dollars of quarters in my pocket... Comcast frustration on my shoulders and still pretty peeved at the Mean USPS lady #1.

Stand in line.


Finally, its my turn... Smile at her, say hello, how are you... " I need to have these hand cancelled" and IMMEDIATELY I get attitude and meanness from MEAN USPS lady #2. OMG. Really? I mention that another USPS Mean Lady sent me to this particular location b/c she said they DID do hand cancelling...

She starts saying, its gonna be at least 81 cents each to send them, that she WON'T hand cancel b/c there is a line but that she WOULD put a BIG RED "Non-Machinable" stamp across my beautiful envelopes to make sure that the Main Brentwood office doesn't put them through the machine.

WAIT A SECOND. HOLD THE PHONE. You won't hand cancel them, but you will take time to stamp each one with the ugly "Non-Machinable" stamp? WTF... seriously? She says, there is a line and she WON'T do it.

At this point, i'm frustrated. I'm about to reach over and do something I might regret... so i walk out steaming mad. STEAMING ...

FH is at work, and knowing i'm THIS angry - calls the main USPS customer service number who then informs him that ALL USPS locations CAN and SHOULD hand cancel. However, if its more than 10 items, that they are supposed to ask the person to set an appointment and come back ... so as to avoid holding up any lines. She states that MEAN USPS Lady #1 shouldn't have said she can't do it b/c its not true and that both Mean USPS lady #1 and #2 should have offered for me to set an appointment.

I find all this out on my drive to the Brentwood location, where a VERY nice gentleman tells me that the invitations are in fact only 61cents and that since it is so many, I would be able to stand at the empty booth next to him and hand cancel them while he still attended to other customers. He was SOOO nice and although that didn't fully make up for the fact that Mean USPS lady #1 and #2 still make steam come out of my ears, my invitations are OUT the door... they are beautifully calligraphied and hand canceled. And it only took THREE different USPS visits and 2.5 hrs of my time. (UGH!)

Then i got to come home to my internet that was broken... (neighborhood wide) and when it finally came back, my modem/router DIED - KAPUT... RIP... and an evening of Best Buy, modem and router buying, setting up and... here we are...

It was days like yesterday that make me wish i lived in Suburbia... where the USPS lady isn't mean. Where she would smile at me and recognize my name and be pleasant. Jokingly tell me that I was asking for too much to have 160 invitations hand canceled while commenting on how beautiful the calligraphy was... and then she would excitedly ask me if i was nervous for my big day, and give me a big happy smile...

Yea, instead - I live in DC where I am constantly reminded that I may be excited for my big day - but it is MY big day, so they don't need to be wasting their energy on me by giving me a smile... *sigh* I'm still excited... so screw them.

Sorry about this mean and venting post... but i had to let it out!


  1. Oh no - you poor thing! I'm sorry you had to go through all of that to get your invitations out. On the other hand, I am really excited for you! Your wedding is getting so close! :)

  2. what a headache! I totally felt your pain - days like that effing suck.

    weird how everyone told you the wrong information - they were just lazy and clearly didn't want to help you - which is weird. weird weird weird.

    sorry to hear about your computer too.

    today is bound to be more awesome

  3. Oh girl...what misery...although I will tell you out here in Bethesda it is no better. USPS is a grab bag of characters, and most have some sort of bureaucratic chip on their shoulder. I am glad its over though! You are almost to the best part!

  4. no need to apologize! vent anytime! *lol* thanks for sharing your hard-learned lesson on hand-canceling! I didn't know you could set up appointments! I'm glad your USPS fail turned around in the end. =)

  5. ohhh sad! I'm sorry :( i am a month behind you so I am about to go through this exact same process so i'm kinda nervous!!!!

    At least they are out the door and it is done done done! I am in that frantic final stages of invite development. ah!

  6. I went to the post office last week to mail off my save-the-dates. I go to this branch often so I know who I want to deal with and who I don't. Luckily, I got one of the nice guys there and he told me he would hand stamp them on his free time. I was a little worried that they would never go out but the next day people were already receiving them! There are some nice ones out there. I'm sorry it took you 2.5 hours to find on though!

  7. What a pain in the you-know-what!! I'm sorry you had to go through that. I have had my fair share of issues with USPS workers. Like you, it's been a mixed bag. On the bright side, I am happy you got your invites out!! :)

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  9. I am so glad you got your invites out!! Sorry the USPS was a pain. Thank you for the USEFULL info about appointments, I had no idea.

  10. Oh sweetie! That is terrible! I'm glad that Mr. Nice USPS guy finally took care of you.

    Making a mental note to go to the post office near my school - they are WAY nicer than the ones near my house. I'll just have to see if I need an appointment or not :)

  11. Boo- the USPS can be SO mean sometimes! I'm sorry you had to go through all that- but your invites are out! How exciting!!

  12. ohmygosh... I hate that this happened to you. Am I weird that I didn't care, and just gave mine to my mailman? Granted my envelopes weren't calligraphied. Anyway- I am HAPPY that your drama is over!


  13. Oh geez, that is a horrific ordeal just to mail the invitations (not to mention all the other ordeals with invitations, starting all the way back with the guest list. arg!) But it's luckily done and it's the weekend, and you can gave a glass of wine to celebrate.

  14. ohhhhh yuck! I could your misery... sorry sorry!

  15. LOL...your account of the suburbia post office is EXACTLY what would have happened if you brought them to FH's town. And you would have saved on postage b/c half of the people that would have walked in while the envelopes were getting stamped would have probably been on your guest list. LOL. At least they got out...:)


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