Something is rotten in the dead-mouse-smelling post office. It's a rodent all right. Not necessarily one with four legs.
Today I had to stop by the dead-mouse-smelling post office over a missing mail issue. (I'm not even going into that here, but it's on my supersecret blog tonight.) I also wanted to purchase two books of forever stamps. I used to have The Pony run in and get them for me, but as we all know, The Pony has forsaken his loving mother for a college education.
"What can I do for you?"
"I'd like two books of forever stamps."
This was not the regular postmistress to whom I am accustomed. Not a cool middle-aged blond, in tailored clothing. She was a bit younger. Tan from a bottle, brassy hair perm-fried. A bit more brusque, as revealed during her interaction with, and subsequent brush-off of the sweet old lady customer ahead of me.
Federal Wench reached under the counter and tossed two sheets of stamps on top. She punched in the purchase on her register or meter or whatever they want to call it. SHEETS! I had asked for books. These were big flat sheets, the Breast Cancer Research stamps.
"Why did you get THOSE? I told you to get flags."
"But Mom...she didn't give me a choice. That's what she gave me, and took the money."
Okay. So The Pony was not the most assertive customer. But Val wants what Val wants. I knew that I wanted my stamps in BOOKS, because I slide them in between the money in my checkbook. No way were these SHEETS going to fold up and fit in there. So I made my request clear.
"Oh. I wanted BOOKS of stamps. Those are too big. Don't you have any BOOKS?"
Federal Wench heaved a heavy sigh. She foraged under the middle section of counter and threw out two foldable BOOKS of stamps.
"We have Songbirds."
I was a bit taken aback. Seems like I used to hand The Pony two twenties, just in case, but that he always came back with two books of stamps, a twenty, and some change. Oh, well. Maybe the prices went up again. I handed over two twenties, and stuffed the stamps and change in my shirt pocket, along with the receipt, and went on to tussle with Federal Wench about my missing letter.
By the time I left, stewing with dissatisfaction, possibly muttering under my breath, I was still not thinking about the stamps. I noticed when I got home and started typing up my revenge-post, and looked up the two kinds of stamps.
WAIT A MINUTE!
Those Breast Cancer Research stamps are 60 cents apiece! Not the 47 cents apiece of the typical forever stamp like the songbirds. I was a victim of bait-and-switch! Federal Wench rang up the expensive stamps, then sold me the regular stamps! I had been overcharged by $5.20. Had Federal Wench not been so eager to tell me there's no way to find out about my missing letter (which I believe is disinformation), she might have corrected the price of the stamps before taking my money.
Do you think Federal Wench was presumptuous in upselling me the pricier stamps?
Tomorrow, I'm going back. WITH the receipt showing that I paid for two sheets of Breast Cancer Research stamps, and the actual two books of Songbirds in Snow that I was given.
What do you think my chances are of getting a refund?
Even convenience stores can check inventory against receipts, you know.