I’d Be a Wicked Good Nature Show Host

This weekend I took my life in my hands.

Armed only with a cup of coffee (a disaster in its own right- we ran out of coffee creamer and tried to buy a carton at Whole Paycheck Foods, which meant we ended up with a soy product that while labelled “hazelnut” would have more appropriately been marketed as “Wooden Spoon”) I embarked on one of the most hazardous of all house-taming missions: dealing with accumulated mail.

I had no tranquilizer gun. I had no net.

I had no smooth-tongued narrator.

I did not have Jim to wrestle the beasts to the ground.

I had only the crappy tasting coffee and my wits, which, frankly, have been listed recently on the endangered species list.

Step One: Identification and Tagging.

Mail taxonomy is often tricker than it seems. For while the major species  junkus prolificus and correspondus personalis are easy enough to identify, others can be more difficult. For instance, some very crafty species of junkus mimickus can actually resemble legitimate strains of mortgage ginormica, in hopes of tricking the unwary home-owner into forking over muchas dineros. And in the sorting phase it’s not at all uncommon to discover a violent species of HOLY  %$#&ICUS that needed to be identified, processed and transported several weeks ago. Specimen growth and the discovery of penalty offspring often accompany the identification of HOLY %$#&ICUS.

Step Two: Processing and Habitat Re-Introduction

Once you’ve identified your various mail species, you must move to the crucial processing and habitat re-introduction phases. Some species can be immediately relocated into the circular-shaped habitat receptacle of your choosing. Some require return to their habitat of origin along with a donation to ensure the continued reproduction of the species. Some cannot be properly handled without additional research, most typically the “Didn’t I already pay that?” or “Why the hell do they need the serial number from the refrigerator?” academic inquiries. And then, there’s my personal favorite, that particular species of mystery mail that if left alone, dies a quiet death. Also known as, ignoritandit goesawayicus. In this case, the proper course of action is to put the creature into a NEW pile, and forget about it for at least one mail life-cycle (about 30 days).

So despite not being filmed or featured on a nature program (although would that NOT be a killer episode?) Himself and I did manage to tame most of the wild mail-life in the house. Although there was a brief altercation over who was meant to take custody of certain specimens, no tranquilizer guns were fired, and the creatures were ultimately handled without injury.

But I’m still bummed that nothing got wrestled to the ground.

22 comments

  1. Ha! The mail is about to avalanche out of it’s inbox & I have no desire to play with it. I should just deal with it as it comes in, but I always have something better to do. Witty take on such a mundane monstrosity!

  2. I deal with most of the mail categories by filing them in a box labeled “Terrifying Correspondence.” This covers pretty much everything except birthday cards and catalogs.

    1. Is there somewhere that sells that box? Because I’m pretty sure everyone would buy one.

      Seriously?

      I’m just handing you this entrepreneurial opportunity.

  3. I used to be on top of this. But when we moved to the suburbs the amount of junk mail we get quadrupled. add this to your nature program: the suburbs are mail’s natural habitat

  4. Didn’t you always wonder if Jim was getting a tad bit pissed that Marlin never jumped onto anything and wrestled it to the ground?! Course, he would have gotten eaten the old coot. It is too bad you didn’t get to play the Jim Fowler with the mail. And why is it that everything at Whole Foods tastes like cardboard or dirt?

  5. But..where are all the mating scenes Marlin would happen upon?

    (which I doubt, now that I”m older, and can remember how many times they’d accidentally fall upon mating)

  6. Ah, we just went thru this on Saturday looking for the species Votus Balletous. It was a frustrating experience, accusations thrown around looking for the rare, yet important article. It was tagged and sent on it’s return journey hopefully to be counted against in the next Taxus Revenueous cycle.

  7. I am 100% guilty of accumulated mail! I have a big basket to “catch” it all, but then if people come over, I’ll move the basket to the Puke Room. After that happens a new pile forms on the counter.

    I do think, though, the easiest way to quickly remove mail bulk is to recycle the magazines and catalogs!

  8. You would make an excellent nature show host. I would absolutely watch that.

    My favorite part of getting the mail is walking past the recycling bin on my way into the house and dropping about 3/4 of it in there. And then the rest on the husband’s desk.

    I’ll stick to handling the UPS packages.

  9. Oh my – I thought I’d cornered the market on ignoritandit goesawayicus!

    It is not only my favorite species of mail, but also of childhood discipline, gray-hair accumulation, and slowing metabolism.

    So glad and also so sorry I’m not alone. (insert slow head shake here.)

  10. Lori, you would rock the nature program host gig.

    And I’m willing to bet they get some killer coffee, with real creamer that actually tastes like what it’s named for.

    The email and the Google Reader are constantly in attack mode around here. I feel your pain.

  11. Well done! I recently accomplished the same, transforming a room in my house from storage for grocery bags filled with explanations of benefits and dwindling Roth IRA statements into an office. The round file was generously employed, as was the wood stove. Poof.

  12. You are really smart with the science! So impressed! Loved the way you talked about the mail. We’ve got all of those species over here, too. Also loved “Whole Paycheck”. Ha!

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