Boomer Authority™

Magazine Subscriptions or Spam - is there a difference?

As I write this, from my peripheral vision I can see a tidy stack of magazines waiting for time to read them. The stack continues to grow with each week – and every couple of weeks or so, I haul the bottom of the stack to the trash – what a waste – so many trees gone as a result!

The un-ignorable pile contains issues of; Vogue, Business Week, More, Elle, “O” and Martha Stewart Living. I am too embarrassed to tell you how many catalogs are in the pile! The irony is I never ordered or paid for any of the periodical magazines! The exception is “More” which is a 3 year subscription – and a gift from my mentor.

Lately, my mailbox is crammed with subscription renewal pleas not to mention the invoices I am now receiving! I’ve written, called, spoken to several – “customer service specialists” even claiming to be blind – to no avail.

For the record: I am a 56 year old business woman who does NOT cook; have never been into couture; have a vehement distrust of women who look “dead” in Jimmy Chew shoes; don’t get me started about Martha – I know too much about her management style; Elle – what the hell is an “elle” anyway; and while I do like Oprah – the magazine is a tome for advertisers of products I don’t even know how to apply – OK I get it - she supports her charities – but I’d rather send a check. I do manage to browse the “weekly” Business Week; so I guess I should go ahead and pay for it since I have read the articles.

I have no one but myself to blame for the “catalog” situation – and it HAS become a situation. I am a lazy, extremely lazy buyer – notice I did not say shopper. My favorite store is DOT.COM. Who knew DOT.COM buying was going to result in 50 pounds of paper a week, delivered by a 105 pound US Mail Lady? Needless to say, the Mail Lady hates me – she looks at me with wide little eyes that belie her true thoughts. After one year (coincidentally the length of time I have been un-employed), I can read those thoughts - which I’m happy to share. “Why don’t you put on something that MATCHES, deal with that cowlick, and drag your lazy butt to the Mall; so I won’t have to haul 50 pounds of catalogs to your door every week (because your mailbox won’t hold it)?” The neighborhood dogs alert her arrival so I cower behind the peep-hole! I always wonder if she can hear my heart pounding with nothing but the door between us.

Thursday is trash day - and the company who provides the pick-up service has very specific rules about the contents of the containers. Apparently I am a persistent and flagrant rule-breaker! My giant trash bins on wheels (which by the way I had to pay for) are routinely adorned with RED (announce to the neighborhood) violation tags! Last Thursday as punishment for my blatant disregard for the trash RULES - my bins were left at the end of my driveway – full of the weekly catalogs and unread magazines! In retrospect, it took some thought and energy for the “refuse engineers” to remove the “scented” garbage containing, bow-tied bags and leave the magazines and catalogs!

Lest you think me a complete idiot – I have tried to find homes for my stash. I made the rounds to my doctor, dentist, library, beauty salon, retirement centers and even my local pharmacy; like the magazine fairy! You would think people would appreciate seeing something in the doctor’s office besides 5 year old Golf Digest? However, according to the grapevine used (NOT) magazines could be a bio-hazard or worse – a threat to National Security! I’ve been politely asked not to deliver any more magazines – maybe it was the cowlick that raised suspicion?

I’ve begun to outline my options: Move with no forwarding address – but I really like my More Magazine. Become one of those ladies you see on television who hoard paper piles. Burn them in the driveway – the fine is only $25 which is $25 less than the $50 the trash-removal company charged for breaking the rules. Drive around at night looking for unlocked dumpsters – risking a $100 fine. Or wrap and give as gifts.

I’ll think on it!

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