hey usps and louis dejoy, where’s the mail??

This was posted by a friend today:

I hate to sound nostalgic (AKA old!), but I fondly remember when the USPS managed to deliver mail REGULARLY. We — and our neighbors — have had no mail delivered since Tuesday, and that batch included only some of the mail that had been scheduled to land on Monday, when our carrier was also a no-show.

Because you can receive a daily email from USPS that shows images of what is scheduled to arrive in your box each day, it has been rather unsettling to see how many items qualify as missing. Well, the mystery has been solved.

This morning, my husband decided to pay a visit to the actual post office, after efforts to contact a human by phone went nowhere. A worker explained that the postal manager for the West Chester region issued an edict recently to deal with the agency’s short staffing: surreptitiously skipping delivery days. She said the office needs 80 carriers to handle the load: It has 40. As a result, she said we should expect to see a delivery every 2 or 3 days.

I guess the idea of notifying customers about the worker shortage wasn’t part of the plan. Would it really have been too difficult to put a notice in people’s boxes on their lucky delivery day? Perhaps some publicity about this problem would help solve it. Sigh. End of rant, but curious about whether this is happening in other areas.

~ Chester County Resident # 1

Now this is the second such tale in less than a week.

I have you on my mailing list but my mailman hasn’t been seen for five days. I was told that he had health problems but there were no replacements. Also, PO closed in town. So I will try for Christmas card instead.

~ Chester County Resident # 2

My second friend lives in the Borough of West Chester. She works from home and is self employed and well…mail is kind of essential.

So Louis De Joy you plastic arsehole, where’s the mail? Santa might want to deliver the Christmas cards himself I guess?

It’s time for Washington to deal with this. We need our mail. This is happening all over. It’s bullshit.

my darling ups, you SO screwed up AGAIN, let me count the ways….

UPS is one of those companies who make it literally impossible to get through to a live person who really speaks American Standard English or any form of English in the U.S. They have offshore call centers at their worst.

I do not use UPS if I can help it. They have lost too many packages over the years. Some companies only deliver with UPS however.

And one point of clarification: our local UPS drivers are wonderful. My beef is with corporate and their cheap ass ways and offshore lack of customer service.

Allow me to start with an email to corporate UPS this afternoon, it pretty much tells the story:

To whom it may concern (and hopefully you are actually located within the United States) ,

I am entirely too fed up with UPS.

In August, after my friend’s property had a horrible fire where they live.  My friend’s teenage daughter lost her favorite boots in said fire.  So as a surprise, I ordered a pair to replace them. 

Why am I telling you this? Simple, because from this moment forward, my friend’s UPS deliveries have been attached to MY email address. I first realized this when I received notification of a mysterious package delivered to Phoenixville PA September 2nd, 2022.

I called UPS because I do not actually live in Phoenixville PA.  I spent and excruciating 45 minutes on the phone with your offshore inept “customer service” whose best advice was “Don’t worry.” Don’t worry? In the day and age of identity theft etc.?

Today I received yet another tracking number notification for UPS for a package to Phoenixville. So I got on your equally inadequate online customer service “chat.” They asked if I knew a particular person, and I said yes, but we don’t live together or share a UPS account.

So next I contacted my friend they mentioned and we worked out the common denominator was I ordered her daughter a present and the company used UPS to ship. 

A few minutes ago I tried futilely to actually get a live customer service agent to help me.  I even tried calling your corporate offices.  Did you know that you actually cannot get to a live person in the U.S. to speak with unless you have some secret inside number? Sorry rhetorical question, of course you know this as it is deliberate.

And don’t tell me to lookey lou inside my own UPS account, because what shows up is MY email address and MY home address.  You all accomplished this bit of stupidity elsewhere.

Well I am seriously peeved as a consumer.  It should NOT be so difficult to speak with an intelligent person and  not someone in an offshore call center. I doubt this is what your founders wanted. 

What I want is simple: 

1.  Remove MY email address from being associated with an address in Phoenixville, PA

2.  My email address should ONLY be affiliated with MY actual address.

3.  You need to return to ACTUAL REAL CUSTOMER SERVICE that ordinary folks can access easily.  Your offshore “chats” sucks and it is impossible to reach your customer service and if you can they can’t understand you and you can’t understand them.  Don’t know where offshore centers are located, and it doesn’t matter, it sucks.

Mine are simple requests, and for all of the money you make this should be no big deal.

Next are the email addresses I sent this to:

DAbney@ups.com,
cbtome@ups.com,
customer.service@ups.com,
pr@ups.com,
ncesarone@ups.com,
bsubramanian@ups.com,
custsvccaen@ups.com,
customerrelations@ups.com,
tmclcure@ups.com,
investor@ups.com

Form this list I have had no bounces yet, but I did get a literal out of office for customer service:

So yes, they admit to a lack of customer service in their own customer service emails. And I also got a reply from the former Chairman, retired two years but still retains corporate email address. So yes, I will remove him from the list, but I guess he doesn’t realize I didn’t dream up his email address, it was on the Internet? So how retired is that? And if he was a GOOD retired CEO he could just forward my e-mail to someone to help, right? We will have to see if he is a good retired CEO.

Seriously, this would make a great Saturday Night Live skit. And allow me to share part of the “chat” today with Lucky G, who was lucky they weren’t in front of me:

Above is UPS’s idea of “customer service” and I think that is more like customer aggravation. Remember the good old days, when you called customer service and they answered and helped you???

As I said somewhere else on here, our local UPS drivers are so good, and always nice, but they aren’t customer service. No, they are just the guys who get to listen when we tell them how bad customer service is.

So UPS, this post is for you. For what your earnings are, you should be able to manage a little actual U.S. based customer service. I have waning respect for U.S. companies who take jobs that should be U.S. based, offshore.

what has happened to thiers in malvern?

Since they opened (or since I became aware of them which was pre-COVID, maybe 2018) I have been trying to go in and see what local Chester County business Thiers Custom Framing and Fine Art Gallery located next to where Sheffields is all about. Their address is 223 E. King Street in Malvern Borough.

I love galleries and I have friends who are framers, but I also just love to look at art and I love to look at frames because it always gives you an idea of how to reframe something or perhaps an inspiration. And I also like to support small businesses. So although I would probably never use this business for framing, I would have been totally interested in seeing what art they had. Art is a wonderful addition to any community, and for example I love Gallery 222 also in Malvern Borough. Gallery 222 is fabulous as a matter of fact.

Anyway back to Thiers. I can’t tell you how many times since I became aware of them that I have tried to stop by and go into this gallery/framer. They never ever seem to be open! I understood not being open during COVID, but other than that I’ve never understood it because I know it is not an inexpensive proposition to have a retail store front.

I actually used to think it was just me hitting Thiers at off times. I was just never around when they were open during Malvern Business Association activities like the Malvern Stroll, etc. and when they were open for one Malvern Christmas I was aware of, I just forgot because the street was so busy with all these other things going on that I just never got there. I figured I’d have another opportunity. Well I never did.

So I saw with interest a post that appeared on a local page today (and it was the second one posted – the other post was in June ) :

I subsequently went and looked on the Thiers business page on Facebook. This is all I found:

This business hasn’t posted anything since April. Now that in and of itself is not necessarily unusual because a lot of businesses are not up on social media. And I can certainly sympathize with a small business having family emergencies. However that seems to be the only thing since April, so I have to ask is it still a viable business? Are they still open? Does their landlord or the Malvern Business Association have any input for people? Who is their landlord, because I am told they don’t own their bricks.

I did go to the person who posted and they were kind enough to message me and let me know that they have been emailing and calling for months. So what they would like to know is if there are any other people out there waiting to get what they purchased or pick up items they left for framing?

No one, myself included, wants to do a local small business dirty. But there comes a point in time where you have to communicate with people. People understand life presents challenges, I think we can all agree that since COVID entered our world, we have all experienced challenges.

But it is time for this business in Malvern Borough to do the right thing. They should give this person back their family artwork because that has special sentimental value. They should also connect with anyone else they have anything outstanding with.

Since I first started digging around to see if I could find anything posted whatsoever about this business and what is going on (this morning), something interesting happened. What is that you ask? I was blocked by this business on Facebook. This afternoon. Why on earth would a business with nothing weird going on do that? And is it possible they may have also blocked actual customers trying to connect with them on Facebook and in other ways? I asked a person I know from out of state if they could pull up Thiers and they did:

Thiers needs to understand that NO ONE means them any ill will, people just want to know what happened to them. And customers waiting on framing, want their property back if the business is unable to complete what they had contracted with customers to do. I am not getting into the who is owed money of it all, that is not an appropriate conversation for me to have and above my pay grade.

Now why did I take an interest in this? Well first of all I took an interest because it was a place I always wanted to visit and they’ve never been open every time I have gone by since 2018 (I think that is when I first noticed them) and I’m in that area a lot. Secondly I took an interest because once upon a time, long before I lived out here I took my grandmother’s little writing desk to a furniture maker/repair person whom my parents always had used. Sadly that little desk had been left in pieces when this particular furniture maker and crafts person who had a warehouse in Ardmore died (2006 I think.) Now at that time I was lucky I got my piece back because my mother had several antiques that just flat out disappeared and essentially were presumed stolen. We never knew or found out who took the pieces. It totally bummed me out because these were things my parents bought when they were married, and my father had died in 2005, the year before the furnituremaker died. So this was truly upsetting to my mother back then, and was like another loss.

But I never actually saw my little desk that was my grandmother’s completely put back together. I took it then to yet another furniture maker/repair person after the prior one had passed away. This person subsequently moved a couple of times within the area and I just never heard from them again. So I don’t know what ever happened to the desk or if it was ever repaired. And I remember how that made me feel, which was a little sad.

So that is why I am putting this out there in the hopes that this business in Malvern gets in touch with their customers. Life happens, and if they communicate, it makes life easier on them and customers, right? I am also putting this out there in the event that there are other people waiting to hear from Thiers in Malvern.

Thanks for stopping by.

back to visit brandywine view antiques in chadds ford

Brandywine View Antiques is one of my favorite places, so I thought I would give them a little shout out today. I have been a customer for years, I am not compensated for mentioning them on this blog, I’m just a happy customer.

They are three floors of fun and outside for great garden accents. They are one of my favorite resources for vintage garden finds. They are also one of the best places to find vintage and antique mirrors and I think they are a wonderful accent for any home and everyone should have at least one.

And I adore the owner she’s good people. If you don’t find them here in their store you can often find them places like Clover Market. They are definitely worth the drive!

Location:
1244 Baltimore Pike. Chadds Ford, PA 19317
Hours:
Wednesday – Sunday: 10:00 am to 5:00 pm. (610) 388-6060|lisa@brandywineview.com

what are the responsibilities of community options inc and their group home at 118 spring road, malvern, pa?

Once upon a time at 118 Spring Road in Malvern, PA in East Whiteland Township, Chester County was lovely family home in General Warren Village. They celebrated Christmas, Halloween, births, deaths, graduations, weddings and other celebrations. They were part of a tight knit community. And General Warren Village is multi-generational which is also why I find it so special.

But eventually, everyone was gone and the family who were left and all had their own homes and whatnot, sold the property. I think they probably thought they were selling to a good company, but I remain jaded about these companies….who run group houses for disadvantaged adults.

No one, myself included, has any negative feelings towards the heirs of 118 Spring Road. They only did what their sad duty and responsibility to surviving family and deceased family had them do. We all wish some of the homes our families have known could stay captured in time and in our families. But we live in a rather expensive world and just often, well can’t.

118 Spring Road was purchased by a non-profit out of New Jersey. Called Community Options, Inc. Like a HUGE Devereaux or KenCrest. Only because they are nationwide, I have to wonder what is altruistic in their business model and what is profit-centric?

These non-profits who house people and own properties are entities, and right or wrong, I am skeptical of them. Not for what they SAY they do, but for what they sometimes DON’T do and they are privately owned, so if there wasn’t profit somewhere would their calling to help still exist? And because of the nature of who they house, they enjoy some Federal protections, don’t they? And their non-profit status means they escape the taxes the rest of us pay, correct? So these group homes should be close to perfect, correct? Perfect for the families entrusting them with their loved ones, the residents, and their neighbors, except they often are NOT terrific, correct?

My neighborhood lives with a KenCrest house. The relationship has been bumpy over the years. Their have been issues from time to time, but not EVER issues like I am hearing about concerning 118 Spring Road Malvern. My neighborhood and KenCrest have worked to build a better relationship, and if we see a problem, we have people in their organization we can call, and things get taken care of. But this Community Options is giving me a whiff of all of the problems with Devereux housing in the area, ok? Sadly, the Devereaux houses and Devereaux make the news way too often in Chester County, don’t they? Horrible stories.

But back to Community Options Inc. which now own 118 Spring Road, Malvern. Community Options has no Chester County office per se, so who knows who regionally is responsible? Delaware County, Allentown, or King of Prussia? See screenshots below in case anyone, media included wish to contact them.

So this morning as in today, I get a message from a friend whose elderly mother is a neighbor:

Great ….they just had 3 police cars at the group house next to my mother’s home. A patient beat up a female worker and ripped off her blouse. Then there was fighting– the police now in the neighbors yard on the other side of their house. Cops were took him to the ground several times until the third car got there and they got him under control.

~concerned person over incident at 118 spring road 8/6/22

I asked my friend a few more questions about this house which is fairly new in my opinion/estimation to have so many issues. I am told police have responded to this address several times so is that the job of our local police to babysit a non-profit’s property where they don’t pay taxes that support things like first responders and infrastructure? Why do neighbors and police have the added burden of dealing with this? I also heard that East Whiteland had to contact them about maintaining the property with things as basic as cutting the lawn and weeds?

My friend further said to me:

Don’t they have to run an orderly business and have control of their patients when they are permitted to be placed into neighborhoods ? As it sure looks like they have a pattern of showing they are unable to control safely the patients they are housing there. No less the safety of senior citizens and young children living around them. What recourse do we have to protect our elderly relatives that live by them ?

~~concerned person over incident at 118 spring road 8/6/22

And that is thing of it: there are elderly residents who have lived there and raised families there, as well as young families who are currently raising families who are starting to feel unsafe. So maybe this house gets special Federal Government love, but what about the rights of EVERYONE ELSE?

Now I found a disturbing New York report or article on homes like this and they specifically referenced an “early action letter” being sent to Community Options NY.

And I have been checking out reviews and such on the Internet about Community Options Inc. Take Indeed which is a job website do NOT have glowing reviews from employees. (“A terrible place to work.” ; “Horrible”; “Poor work environment”, etc) The Google reviews are not much better.

So has anyone seen their licenses with the Commonwealth of PA? Did they have to go in front of any boards or commissions in East Whiteland Township to move into a residential neighborhood and does a group home like this require licensing or a change in zoning?

I pulled the deed transfer and the mortgage on 118 Spring Road. I am embedding them here. I also noted something kind of weird on a signature page where the notary public also signed on someone else’s signature line. A very long time ago, for a few years, I was a notary public. I never signed on someone else’s signature line, but maybe some rule somewhere has changed?

I also pulled the mortgage Community Options Inc in case any of the neighbors are interested. It looks like there are stipulations? I also pulled the IRS form 990 for 2020. Remember about what I said about making money? Well…ummm…and oh yeah nice salaries.

I am NOT against special needs houses in neighborhoods. I have even seen them in fancy Gladwyne, PA neighborhoods. But there are good group houses and not so fabulous group houses.

And as per some perusing on the Internet:

“All personal care homes are licensed by the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services. Personal care homes also meet state and local health, fire and safety laws and regulations. The personal care home regulations are available at the following link: 55 Pa. “

So Community Options Inc, ball is in your court. Talk to neighbors, apologize to neighbors (and township), check on the safety of your employees. Robert T Stack is the CEO or something. He signed the mortgage. You can find him on Twitter at @RobertStackCOI . You can find THEM on Twitter @COINATIONAL. According to ProPublica Stack makes something like $948,380.00 so maybe he can reassure us in Chester County and inspect the house personally?

To conclude: YES those group houses for adults with various disabilities have a legal right to exist in our communities. HOWEVER, neighborhood residents of group house locations have the right to not be upset by houses with problems like 118 Spring Road Malvern is thus far. In that vein, people entrust their relatives to these companies with these group houses and expect the residents to be safe and well cared for. And the employees of these group homes should also be safe. Was what happened today something that would make anyone feel safe?

What are the licenses and permits involved (state, local, etc) for this Community Options Inc. location at 118 Spring Road Malvern PA 19355?

What are the rights of the neighbors who live near this home who have been there in some cases decades?

These group homes are everywhere. As I said I have one owned by someone else in my neighborhood. In my neighborhood, the group home’s owners have worked really hard to create an environment that everyone can live with. It’s not always perfect, but as residents we know exactly whom to contact in the event of a problem.

Zoning for Spring Road:

Zoning for a pre-existing special needs home in East Whiteland:

It would be nice if this new place at 118 Spring Road owned by Community Options Inc. made an effort with neighbors and the company which owns this location took ownership of the issues like the police activity today and addressed and dealt with it. The community is watching and the community has rights, too, correct? I mean how does a house like this just move into a regular residential neighborhood anyway? Isn’t it an institutional usage?

Thanks for stopping by.

now open: sycamore & stone

So yesterday I did a thing. I went and checked out the new Sycamore & Stone on 401!

Jeff Devlin‘s new property is one I am familiar with, because I used to patronize the antique store that was once in this barn. I love this property and was sad when it went up for sale because I was afraid some developers would snatch up the property and the beautiful barns and house would disappear. However when Jeff announced he had purchased this property I was totally psyched because I knew it was going to be saved, preserved, and wonderful!

Along with the barn which has the store there will be other things available to do on this property including the house becoming a fabulous Airbnb.

This is the kind of preservation in real time and adaptive reuse that Chester County needs more of! I will note that I first came to know Jeff and his fiancée Janelle, through our mutual friend Meg Veno, proprietress of Life’s Patina at Willowbrook Farm and the soon to be opened Mechantile at the Jenny Lind House in Historic Yellow Springs Village.

I will note that both the Mercantile/Jenny Lind and Jeff’s Sycamore & Stone are both located in West Pikeland Township. West Pikeland is a treasure trove of amazing historic properties. I hope that Township realizes how fortunate and blessed they are that they have people willing to come in and do these amazing adaptive resources that are viable on historic properties.

Jeff’s store is a feast for the eyes and there is all sorts of fun stuff! It has a great Americana country vibe. It’s a lovely space and shoppers feel relaxed in it. It is almost like welcoming someone into a great big farmhouse and not just a hands down super amazing barn. I gravitate to places that are warm and welcoming. And their staff is equally warm and welcoming!

One of the things I liked best are the reproduction hog scraper candlesticks he has available for sale. I collect the actual vintage/antique variety, so these are a real favorite with me! If Jeff Devlin had a wish list for customers mine would be to carry hand dipped taper candles that fit into hog scrapers because that is the right shape for them!

I look forward to this property further coming back to life and it is such a joy to see the work occurring on it every time I drive by. Jeff is a quality craftsman, and such a nice guy so I am glad he found his spot here on this property. My only lament is I don’t have a super old farmhouse for him to help me restore!

Anyway Sycamore & Stone is yet another reason to shop local! Enjoy the photos!

Sycamore & Stone is located at 1251 Conestoga Road, Chester Springs, PA. Right now the hours are WEDNESDAY-FRIDAY 12PM-7PM, SATURDAY 10AM-7PM, SUNDAY 10AM-4PM.

I will note that I have not been compensated in any way, shape, or form to write this post. I’m merely visited the store and I am now a happy customer: I like to shop local and support the businesses of people I know.

#shoplocal #shopsmall #stonehouserevival #schoolhousewoodworking #home

dealing with lost mail is filled with platitudes and inefficiency

Who does USPS work for? Not really sure. Are you? Waiting for a package is about as fun as sticking needles in one’s eyes.

So a friend sent me a little package from England. A gift. Royal Mail got it to the United States in TWO days. My package arrived in New York March 21st at 3:36 A.M. The next log in the sad and pathetic tracking tale is March 22 at 6:57 it arrives in Jamaica, NY (Queens) “International Distribution Center”. It zips through customs at 9:13 PM on March 22. It goes BACK to Jamaica, NY (Queens) March 23, 5:32 AM. Next it arrives in Jersey City, NJ at 8:32 AM, and leaves Jersey City, NJ at 10:28 AM.

OK at this point, my package should have come to Philadelphia. But oh no, it went to Chicago, IL. Yes, apparently someone must’ve wanted Chicago deep dish. It arrives at Chicago, IL “Logistics Center”, then travels to St. Louis, MO. Steak and BBQ in St. Louis perhaps?

After it leaves St. Louis on March 25th, my package entered a parcel witness protection program apparently…between March 29, 2022 and April 4th, 2022 my package was “in transit to next facility” then it magically re-appears in Memphis, TN. I guess someone wanted Memphis BBQ?

It is now in Jacksonville, FL. FLORIDA, let that sink in. CRAZY right? Spring break or something?

Fear not, there is more in this twisted tale of USPS. I finally waded through the cumbersome USPS website and opened a case. They closed said case without resolving a god damn thing and sent me a survey. I felt like I was in the USPS Twilight Zone.

So the United States Postal Service sent me a survey to see how they did resolving my issue, right? Only they did not resolve my issue. They didn’t call, they didn’t e-mail, they did exactly zip, ziltch, zero, NADA, NOTHING.

I would think this was just happening to me, except hit up social media and USPS issues abound. And in most cases it is NOT issues with our local post offices, the problem is how the handle everything.

Wait and then there is whose packages USPS actually delivers….drug dealers….file under you just can’t make this stuff up. Hat tip to Vinny Vella at the Philadelphia Inquirer for this:

A drug ring that moved more than 800 pounds of crystal methamphetamine from Los Angeles to Philadelphia, then spread the narcotic throughout the Mid-Atlantic, has been shut down, Montgomery County authorities said Tuesday.

In what officials described as one of the largest drug busts in county history, authorities arrested five men and seized drugs with a street value estimated at between $2.6 million and $3.7 million….The ring was first identified last March, when an undercover police officer in Lower Merion bought two pounds of meth from a local drug dealer and learned of the larger organization, which had been supplying that dealer and others.

~ Vinny Vella Philadelphia Inquirer 4/5/22

Now in the middle of all this, I called my Congresswoman’s office. Rep. Chrissy Houlahan to be precise. Now I have no issue with Chrissy and her staff is among the nicest outside of former Rep. Jim Gerlach’s staff. And when you call other Washington DC Representatives (i.e. Senators Toomey and Casey 95% of the time you get voicemail, and the 5% of the time they do actually answer the phone you can tell they have zero desire to speak to constituents and it’s their job, but hey who is counting on that? Lord I remember the back in the day visit friends made to then Senator Arlen Spector’s Washington DC office and when they went in the staff was playing with a Karoke Machine. Yup, true story.

But back to the present day….

Congresswoman Houlahan’s staffer was incredibly nice, and they always all are. The woman I spoke with was polite and empathetic. But sometimes you want more than platitudes. Yes I know the Congresswoman supports USPS and some postal service reform act, BUT I wanted to someone actually say “How can we help you.” Again, I like them and Chrissy, but Jim Gerlach’s staff used to do more than listen, they did try to find a solution. I think part of the problem is everyone is so overwhelmed post -COVID and exhausted from the political slog that is Washington DC and the district represented.

I got off the phone with Houlahan’s office and decided to just get someone on the phone from USPS (damn it). And I did. Very nice and actually sounded appalled as to how my package wasn’t here yet and where it had gone. She made the comment about my packaging visiting more states than she has. Uhhh huh.

So I also pointed out that part of the problem in general with mail from my part of Chester County goes back to when Joe Biden was Vice President. We used to go through Southeastern for a hub or whatever you want to call it. He took it all away from there and we clear through Wilmington, DE. If we mail Christmas cards to our neighbors, for example, the cards go to Wilimington, DE before returning to Chester County, PA. It’s true. Not all of Chester County, but a good bit of it. It makes NO SENSE.

And I also remarked that EVERY time you have a problem with USPS outside of your local area they ask you from national if you have spoken to your local post office. That is SO FRUSTRATING when the issue has nothing to do with the locals who deliver your mail. It’s maddening. And you practically need an Act of Congress to even find where you can submit a complaint on their convoluted and staggeringly ridiculously ineffective and just bad website.

Oh and I think Biden could get rid of the current board of governors of the United States Postal Service, get a 100% new board, and THEY could ditch DeJoy. (Or at least that is what I think.)

Anyway, the other complaint I have with this whole process are the USPS social media people especially on Twitter. Maybe they are bots. Maybe they are outsourced to a country outside the US would be my other thought. Some are borderline OK and others? Just snide and rude and they are supposedly there to “help”.

I was going to end the post right here, but since I started raising hell this afternoon there has been an interesting development: like magic my missing package traveled at the speed of sound from Jacksonville, FL and arrived in Philadelphia at 6:04 PM. It miraculously departed Philadelphia at 7:28 PM and has arrived in Wilmington, DE as of 8:39 PM. It will come to Chester County from Wilmington. Now I don’t know when. But isn’t it just so interesting when you really start to complain, missing packages sometimes appear?

But why should customers have to expend so much energy just to get their own damn mail? The answer is we shouldn’t. And now while Congress is chasing their tails arguing over whether or not USPS should get electric cars how about actually fixing the broken system of mail delivery? And that doesn’t mean putting more tracking on postal workers delivering locally – don’t know what to call it but it’s a gadget they have in their signature device that is kind of Amazoning them – probably to try and increase productivity by electronically hounding the delivery folks so more quit.

And a word about electric cars: they have giant batteries. Batteries require specific recycling so electric cars may not be a complete environmental answer after all. And if you get the USPS electric trucks etc, how many charging stations will have to be installed and at what cost to taxpayers. Oh and the battery components don’t just grow on trees do they?

Anyway….here’s hoping I see my package soon. And #FireDeJoy

Enjoy my last word. An actual tweet sent by USPS on Twitter today with a Bridgerton reference. They thought they were being clever. Bless their hearts.

you will want to check out this sale – which won’t be repeated!

Tonight I went to my friend’s studio for a prop house sale. And another friend facilitated the sale. I realized tonight how long it had been since we all just had fun. Like pre-COVID fun.

We were invited to the sale preview, and it was amazing. The space is fabulous and there were nibbles and laughter….and a giant space full of new, vintage, antiques, and everything in between. China, crystal, glassware, pottery, fabric, mirrors, linens, furniture, art, rugs, Dansk Kobenstyle Dutch ovens, and more!

Even better? It was this amazing well lit space that was filled with light and had high ceilings. Maybe it’s just me because I always love to see how loft spaces are interpreted.

The regular open days of the Maximalist Studios Prop House Sale are tomorrow and Saturday, March 25 and 26 10 AM to 2 PM each day. 501 W. Washington Street in Norristown. You can find out more information on the Sales By Helen website.

happy monday, sounds like a scam dinner….at red lobster

So we got this postcard in the mail. It was a no obligation event limited to a select group of timeshare owners. Only one problem, we’re not timeshare owners. No one in our family is a timeshare owner.

I love a good scam, don’t you?

It did not list company and we all get these postcards in the mail all the time for insurance, brokerage, money managers and so on. It’s a come on to sell you something. It’s Marketing 101. So I wanted to know what company was doing this. And yes, I am that consumer who will call and say Whatcha’ Talkin’ ‘Bout ‘Willis.

So I called the phone number which is 1-800-245-8993. Here’s the first woman (give it listen, very entertaining):

She was special, yes?

So she says they are calling on behalf of Molfetta Law in Langhorne, PA. There is not Molfetta Law in Langhorne PA. There is one in California. So I called. They didn’t know what I was talking about.

So I called Red Lobster in King of Prussia. Poor kid who answered phone was just confused by what I was asking. Couldn’t find any large reservations for the dates and times on the post card. She was kind enough to give me the number of Red Lobster Corporate. So I called. They could find any large reservations in their system so they said if was probably a scam.

I found another post card on the internet listed as a scam:

Then I did a little Facebook searching. Found another one:

So I do not know what the thing is using Red Lobster, but it seems to be the fake timeshare dinner of choice.

So I called back number on post card. Here is call #2:

IMS in Scranton is some marketing place. So how whomever found these people to call and send out a coupon escapes me.

I found a video from yesterday about this someplace else, again at a Red Lobster:

The toll free number when you put it into Google says it is a scam. That is 1-800-245-8993. Of course, it all comes back to one small detail: we don’t time share and no one in our family or extended family does.

So happy Monday, this is your scam entertainment for the week.

Is there a scamalot song? And they are cheap scammers. Red Lobster is all they can do?

when will hate have no home in chester county?

So if it is not making a scene at school board meetings over masks, shots, book lists and whatever else, these people are also all about hassling local businesses? Really?

I thought I had run out of Welcome to Crazier Town posts, but no, no apparently not.

A slightly related aside before I dive in.

Historically, the Republican party was about supporting, not destroying business. But enter the age of Trumpublicanism. All of a sudden, January 6th, 2021 as per the G.O.P. otherwise known as the attack on the US Capitol, which left people dead and injured as well as terrified, was “legitimate political discourse.”

Take Trumpublican politics to the new heights of groups defending “freedom” and “patriotism” where THEIR rights supersede everyone else’s. They have inalienable rights, ours do not matter. It’s their constitution, not anyone else’s.

You go against them and you are vile and horrible. Everyone who disagrees with them are terrible people. Just ask me I get comments ALL of the time. And yes, these are the people that made me decide once again that leaving the Republican party after being a Republican since I was old enough to vote was the right decision. I am not overly liberal. I would be what you call fiscally conservative and socially liberal. I am in truth, a moderate. Of course, that doesn’t matter in this post, it’s just part of my thought process.

So enter groups like Stepford Wives for Totalitarianism (and their man-servants.) They are the avenging angels (in their little minds) of truth, justice, and the American way. They are the avenging whatever the hell they think they are of saving us all from whatever their pea brains think up that week. Except they aren’t saving any of us, they are just trying to control how everyone else thinks. They are bullies. When we were in middle school they were taking over lunch tables and calling you out for fights behind the gym. It appears they haven’t evolved much. Hence, why they are the future handmaids of the totalitarianism point of view.

to·tal·i·tar·i·an·ism

/tōˌtaləˈterēəˌnizəm/

noun — a system of government that is centralized and dictatorial and requires complete subservience to the state.”democratic countries were fighting against totalitarianism”

What is another term for totalitarianism?

(also tsarism or tzarism), despotism, dictatorship, totalism, tyranny.

Synonyms for totalitarianism

absolutism, autarchy, authoritarianism, autocracy, Caesarism, czarism (also tsarism or tzarism), despotism, dictatorship, totalism, tyranny
Words Related to totalitarianism

monarchism, monarchy, monocracy
Big Brother, Big Brotherism, Communism, fascism, Nazism
domination, oppression

So yea. That. Wearing his Trump shirt proudly (which is his right), this guy goes and hassles a small business employee over their masking policies (which is not his right.) The Downingtown Rock Gym. With his little kids in tow. Yes the video is grainy. Took it off of social media.

But this is wrong. Small businesses have had it hard enough since BEFORE COVID-19 hit, and this is this guy’s town and this is how he supports local businesses? By harassing employees doing their jobs?

So what if say, people went to another local Downingtown business like Creekside Antiques Downingtown on the Brandywine and did a similar thing? What if they went in and said they were horrible people that didn’t care about their community because no one has to wear masks? Do you think that would be right? I don’t.

Why am I choosing this other store (which I love, by the way)? Because that is a store that I know does NOT require masks to enter, so again what if someone was upset by that and went in and harassed their front desk and took a video and posted it? After all they went through getting reopened after Hurricane Ida wouldn’t you think that was awful? I would. Just like I think it was awful for that guy to do that to the front desk guy at Downingtown Rock Gym.

Look if you don’t like the business policy on masking or anything else, you DO NOT, I repeat, you DO NOT have to go inside. But right now whether it is WEAR a mask or DON’T WEAR a mask, that is up to the business, it is not up to the rest of us. They are doing what they feel is best for their customers, employees, and business.

That grainy video is a HORRIBLE example of how to treat ANY small business during this time. First we all had lockdown, and all of these small businesses had to close for a while. Then they had to get creative opening up and adjusting like the rest of us to the new normal. And they had to try to pay their rent, mortgage, employees, and survive. Now we are in the in between where some things are masks required (hospitals, medical offices as two examples), some things will be masks for a little while longer (schools), and then there are small businesses who have to do what THEY feel is best for their business, employees, customers.

DO NOT TARGET a small business because you don’t want to wear a mask. CHOOSE another business you are more comfortable with.

Personally, I know how hard the pandemic has been on businesses like this rock gym, so I APPLAUD them for the courage of their convictions. It is EASY to do NOTHING, it takes COURAGE to act in what you feel is the best direction for your employees, your customers, your business.

I am also appalled that a grown man took his small children to watch him essentially yell at this poor employee of the Downingtown Rock Gym. To each their own on parenting, but I also kind of think that was mean to the kids.

We can’t even say Hate Has No Home Right now because I feel (right or wrong) that this world is so crazy, we can’t say it. That makes me sad.

For the love of anything you believe that is holy, people, just stop this crap. Respect the decisions of these small businesses. If you don’t agree with them, go someplace more to your comfort level. But if they want us to wear a mask for a little while longer, so what? Masks aren’t forever, even if they are for now.