Monday, January 7, 2013

Post Office. Or, I'm a Paranoid Weirdo.

hmm, what's in the box?!
remember when we all used to round the corners on our photos? 

It was Saturday evening around 5pm and my family and I had just finished dinner at Smashburger (my first time there- loved it!) and I thought it would be a good time to dash over to the post office and mail a pesky return I'd been holding onto for a week. I love those automated post boxes, don't you? A funny story in a funny story, my Dad didn't not believe in their existence until about two weeks ago when I swore up and down that YES there were these ATM-esque self-serve postal machines that allow you to skip the entire 20-person deep line and mail your package yourself. He laughed at me and said he didn't believe it...until he saw for himself that yes, Virginia, they really do exist. TOLD YOU DAD.

But anyway, I thought that Saturday night would be a great time to use the magic machine and get that godforsaken package off of my to-do list once and for all. I went into the empty lobby, package in hand, a canister of Mace in my pocket, equally ready to mail my parcel and to defend myself against some strange man sure to jump out and attack me. And you should know that I'm not even kidding- I think my parents have instilled such a fear in me of "bad things" happening (remind me to share the whole story my Mom would tell me growing up about hair dye and a public bathroom) that I'm virtually always looking over my shoulder for a stranger or worse, a VAN. But yes, I'm in the lobby, at the magic machine, ready to mail, when a man comes in and says "hey Miss, I can mail that for you, if you want to see if it fits into the slot over there in the metered section." First of all, points for the miss vs. ma'am, but hold up Mister Stranger, why on earth would I give you my package to mail for me? I looked at him puzzled for a moment and said something like, "oh no, I'm good thank you very much. I'm going to just put it over here where it belongs." He looked puzzled for a second and took two steps closer (I, getting two finger-lengths closer to my pepper spray), and said "No, see you don't understand, I need to mail your package for you if you want it to go out."

Hmm. The only thing I could think was that this man must be out of his mind and forcefully mailing others' packages must be this thing, but there was no way he was taking this Lulu return from me without a fight. He said again, "I'll mail it. Just get your postage." I again said no thank you and as he stood there, still staring at me, I got kind of freaked out and said quickly, "and if you could just let me mail this on my own that would be wonderful, thank you so much" all awkwardly jumbled together. I don't think it was rude of me to say that, but the second it came out of my sort-of-scared self's mouth, I noticed he was looking at me like I was the crazy one. He gave me the strangest look, turned around and as he did, I noticed there was a cart next to him, filled with those official mail bins, filled with mail. The kind postmen use when they collect mail from mailboxes. The kind they are happy to fill up with your mail. Oh.

Before I could say a word he was gone, cart and all, and there I was with the magic self-serve postage machine, unmailed package in hand. All I could think to do was yell into the mail slot, "Sir! I'm so sorry! I didn't realize you were a postal worker! Sir? Hello?" But my postman friend was long gone.

I got my postage, and me, my package and my pepper spray walked over the metered slot and dropped it in.

Hank and I like to call instances like this "Larry David moments." Have you ever seen Curb Your Enthusiasm? If you haven't, you must. But afterward, all I could think about was how much of an LD Moment this really was. So friends, remind me next time to not be such a paranoid weirdo, okay? Lesson learned.

xoxo


42 comments:

  1. oh thank god i am not the only one who sees danger and creepy people that are most obviously out to harm me in some way everywhere. it's good to be cautious but sometimes i think i go overboard. that being said, this was pretty funny. :)
    xoxo, lauren

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  2. This made laugh so much, I am little miss paranoid most of the time too haha! (And always suspicious of vans, good grief.) But hey. Better to be safe than sorry, right?! ;)

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  3. LMFAOOOOO! This was a funny story. Especially since I am paranoid about "bad things" happening thanks to my parents as well.

    -Buzygurl
    www.endlessnoisenyc.com
    www.livelovehustle.com
    www.uptowngirlsnyc.com

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  4. My husband thinks I'm the female personification of Larry David!
    I'm the opposite with the whole paranoia thing now. As an overly anxious child I got used to my parents constantly reassuring me that nothing bad was going to happen. Because I was very obedient I totally took this on board and now am ridiculously trusting. It's served me well so far though :)

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  5. haha, i know exactly what you are talking about :D
    it happened to me once that a 'stranger' stopped his car when i was waiting at the bus stop and asked me if he can drive me. i remembered all the good advices from my mother and grandmother and refused, walked away, said 'NO!' & 'Go away!' many times. he was following me in his car and finally said 'don't you recognize me? I'm your dad's tennis partner' .. i was never good in recognizing faces and still feel embarrassed..

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  6. Hahaha! So funny! I am paranoid in situations like that, too! But seriously, shouldn't we be? This world is crazy!

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  7. I went through a phase of these awhile ago, completely unintentional majorly awkward moments. Here's one for you:

    I was home alone and it was about 10-11pm at night when there was a knock on the door. I peered through the window and there was a strange man I'd never seen before. I pretended I wasn't home but he wouldn't go away, he kept knocking. I'm pretty embarrassed to say, I CRAWLED around on the floor under the window to get my phone and call my dad who lived nearby at the time. It was like a horror movie, me whispering that a man was trying to get into the house and wouldn't go away. Eventually he left, just before my dad came over and as he pulled up to the kerb, noticed my electricity cable was throwing an enormous shower of sparks over the roof of my house, threatening to set it alight. I was so, so embarrassed that I didn't answer the door, thinking it was some crazed rapist/murderer, when it was someone trying to save me from a potential house fire! Ugh. I feel you dear!

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  8. I think it's in our nature, females are brought up knowing that we are far more vulnerable to attacks/strange men/strange women even, so there's always going to be that hint of fear if someone is getting a little too close to our personal space. For Christmas I was actually given a panic alarm for my handbag/pocket when I'm walking home in the dark. It's good to be cautious, you never know when it could save your life.

    This did make me chuckle though :)

    x

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  9. Haha. So first I'm reading this and I laugh but when I think about it I think I would have done EXACTLY the same thing. I too have been growing up with 'weird van' or 'don't-ever-EVER-talk-to-strangers' stories. I'm so jumpy and a little scared when I'm alone too, especially when it's dark outside! So I totally understand! On the bright side though... This will be something you will laugh about and it's a fun story to tell to people :D

    Love, Saar

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  10. Hahahahahaha! This is a cute, hilarious story. I think I would have acted the same way.

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  11. haha so funny! good for you. i love curb!

    x barnicles

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  12. haha that is totally a Larry moment, I've had a few myself where I thought "yep, that should be a Curb episode." I get a little overly paranoid like this too, my post office is in a shady area and I'm always watching my back like I have a weird twitch.

    I am amazed at these self-serve machines though... so jealous! I've never seen one and I'm at the post office at least once a week, so I might have to ask them about it.

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  13. I remember hearing something on Oprah once that humans are the only species that question their fight vs flight instinct. The expert said how unnatural it was for someone to interject themselves into a fearful situation in fear of being perceived as rude or unsociable.

    Honestly, I would have been freaked out too.

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  14. Funny - I probably would have been spooked, too.

    HOWEVER - if you're the paranoid kind, why are you carrying pepper spray!? You're more likely to injure and incapacitate yourself, making you an even EASIER target. It's so terrible at its intended purpose that it's illegal to carry in Canada. Much better to take a self defence class and learn the ol' "kick 'em in the balls" technique - which you could master since you're a tough gal.

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  15. So funny! I usually have the opposite - people think that I AM the mail worker/shop assistant/droid they're looking for and give me these great long spiels about what they're needing while I try desperately to tell them they've got the wrong girl.

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  16. I'm totally a paranoid weirdo, "get away, don't talk to me" kinda person myself! And I, too, carry pepper spray! I usually always have one hand in my pocket and one finger on the trigger ;)

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  17. I totally identify with you here. Sometimes I peer under my car at night in the parking lot to make sure someone isn't going to "slash my achilles tendons", because that makes perfect sense. haha
    - Kelsey @ Time Stand Still

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  18. Rather be safe than sorry right? :) Hehe, I've totally been there, at least you can laugh about it! It definitely made me giggle and think back on some of my own paranoid weirdo moments.

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  19. Too funny!! I TOTALLY identify with THE VAN. And I love love love the Postal ATM!

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  20. Haha, I'm so sorry if I really thought the situation was awkward and funny. But it does really happen to everyone of us. Hehe. :)

    x aurora

    rottennuke.blogspot.com

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  21. I miss your bangs. Also, YESYESYES to LD moments. Have them more than Id care to admit!

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  22. Haha you make me laugh! The mention of always being on the lookout for someone to kidnap you or something - that is me. The van comment made me laugh so much cause my mom told me when I was little that you never park next to van and I used to annoy my cousins when we would go somewhere that you should NOT park by a van and now I avoid vans like the plague. True story.

    This story was brilliant. Seriously.

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  23. hahahaha, total Larry David moment. It makes me love you even more. <3

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  24. OMG. This story is hilarious. A total Curb situation!! xo cortnie

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  25. Men can be so oblivious to the world women live in, one where they are more likely to feel vulnerable and be a victim of violence.

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  26. Oh no! haha! I wouldn't be able to show my face again...unless I knew I would be able to apologize. haha

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  27. This is so funny! But the truth is, I'd probably do exactly the same thing! Were we all told the same horrible van story when we were little? ;P

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  28. Cute story, that is so me. Hope all is well! :)

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  29. don't feel bad, Danielle!
    I'm exactly the same and with all the bad things happening around us (and especially to women!) I find that okay.
    plus I think it's better to be overcautious and then have an embarrassing story to tell ;)

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  30. Sadly, I don't think it's unreasonable for you to have your guard up. You really never know what can happen. My dad is a former NYPD officer, so maybe some it comes from that. But I'm sure it's a "proximity to a major city" thing as a "woman" thing. I went to a party a few weeks ago and I was very aware that I was alone, about to walk into a neighborhood I didn't recognize. Never mind that it was a semi-suburban neighborhood, it was dark and I felt a little uncomfortable. I was also wearing a dress, which I think made things worse. I ended up sitting in my car until I knew a friend at the party was aware that I was coming in/keeping an eye out for me. I left alone, too, and made sure I was carrying my car keys in between my fingers (in stabbing position).


    www.theramblingfangirl.com

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  31. Super cute, had to laugh but still better safe than sorry right? I would have been way harder on him though. My parents are the same way ;)

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  32. hahaha this is so me too. i always think someone is going to attack me or they are up to something. i love trail runs in the woods, but i always run with mace!

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  33. Ha! I can totally relate to this, I have a fear of bad things that was instilled in me too :) I love Curb Your Enthusiasm and working in a restaurant has given me a huge list of Larry David moments!

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  34. Ah! I have this way of thinking too! glad to know I'm not the only "paranoid weirdo" out there! ;)

    There are potentially embarrassing moments because of it, but hey I don't get too crazy about it. Like I tell me husband when he starts to make fun of how 'cautious' I am, "there is a reason I haven't been murdered or raped" .

    Never can be too careful.

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  35. Just discovered your blog and love this. I so appreciate your candidness, authenticness and humor. What a great story. Thanks for bringing a smile to my day!

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  36. haha This is Hilarious! I laughed out loud. I could totally see myself doing the exact same thing. Thanks for sharing.

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  37. Being a little paranoid is never a bad thing?!! I'm currently living in Stockholm and after the two NYC subway deaths and one here, I try to walk in the middle so that I'm not too close to either set of train tracks. Thanks, mom & dad!! Ha

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  38. Ha! I have Larry David moments all the time. Like when I saw a lady park in a handicapped spot to return a Redbox movie... I didn't say anything, of course, but I was just like, "Have you SEEN Curb Your Enthusiasm?! You can't do things like that!" I am referring to the episode when he uses the large, handicapped bathroom stall, which I always did as a kid, but never again after seeing that episode. :)

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  39. Hahahahahaha!!! This was great :)

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  40. Happy to know I am not the only one afraid of creepy vans with one side door!

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  41. This post made me so happy. I am the same way and I probably would have done the same thing in this situation! I'm always looking out for danger. If a car drives too slowly while I'm walking the dogs, my heart will start beating super fast. I'm always thinking the worst is about to happen.....I'm glad I'm not the only one. (My mother made me this way). Gotta love her!

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  42. That story was great!! I can so relate my Mom told me all the stranger danger stories too (I should share her story one day too) Thanks for the laughs your newest follower

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