Two post office shops. Prepped and weighed the packages at home, on a new scale. One was 1 lb, 2 oz, the other close to 2 pounds.
Get to the first post office. The clerk offered me first class only. "But it's too heavy, isn't it?" No, it's only 12 oz.
Good grief. "Oh, I'm sorry, that's not the package I was supposed to mail. I hope the other one is in my car." Dash out to car, retrieve 2nd package. Mail it, successfully, using Priority Mail.
Go back to the car, open a small slit in box #1, and stuff everything into the box I can find in my car -- business cards, roll of lifesavers, my keys (all duplicates, of course), a roll of tums -- everything in my car except actual trash. Go back in and ask the very nice clerk if she would be kind enough to weigh the package and tell me how much it will cost to mail.
OMG! 15.6 ounces.
Well, have 45 miles to drive to the second post office, and I know I'm driving right by a Dollar General. Go in and
grab stuff, anything that's a dollar and weighs an ounce.
These rural post office close at 4:30, so I'm running out of time. Stuff two ounces of stuff into the box, off to post office number 2.
Frazzled, I asked the clerk if I had to buy more tape, or if she was allowed to tape up the box for me (I made the slit to stuff things in, remember? ) She was SO NICE! She happily retaped the box for me.
She asks the Hazmat question. Anything liquid? Well, yeah -- what the dollar store had that was 1 ounce and $1 was a personal size hand sanitizer.
Damn my big mouth! I told the clerk about the sanitizer. Nope,can't go priority, only retail ground.
If I was frazzled when I entered the post office, my vocabulary doesn't extend to describe how stunned I was.
Good grief, Holy Cow, honest to goodness! "I'm so sorry, I just won't mail this," and I grabbed the box back and left.
E-mailed the scheduler. And to all who have "been there, done that", yes, I drove back the next day (200 mile round trip, after working all morning!) and mailed the package -- after removing the hand sanitizer.
On the way into the post office the 2nd day, I noticed a large banner prominently posted in the lobby. I've shopped this post office for at least 10 years, and never noticed it before. It proclaimed this post office had won the Customer Service award, the number one store in a 7-state area. I did ask the clerk about it. She said, "Yes, back when we were mystery shopped, we won that. But I guess they ran out of money for that program, or just don't care any more."
Guess I wasn't outed.
And I left the post office chuckling, and still chuckle when I think of it. So the 200 mile drive wasn't a total loss!
Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 06/19/2022 06:33AM by ceasesmith.
Lol what a wild ride, glad you got through it and weren't spotted. I've definitely done the "stuff random things from my car into this package" routine before. Sometimes I'll weight it on the self serve machine and then go make adjustments, but a lot of the little rural office don't have those.
Sorry you had to go through all that. I try to make my boxes a minimum of about a pound and a half to take care of any discrepancies, but once I was sending a birthday present to DIL #2 and underestimated how much it weighed. The self-serve scale set me straight, so I walked over to a nearby grocery store and bought a large candy bar. The store had no tape, but a Hallmark store farther down in the strip mall let me use their store roll to tape the envelope back up.
Happiness is not a goal; it is a by-product. Eleanor Roosevelt
I have added tools (wrench, screwdriver), my jumper cables and rocks from the parking lot! Occasionally a scale is not calibrated and the package will weigh in short. This happened most often at the office supply stores.
Reading your story, Cease, I could totally relate and, now, laugh!
Have either a 15 oz. can of vegetables or a one pound bag of very expired dried beans. When you add the weight of the box itself, they end up very close to 1.5 lbs. None of my boxes have ever been weighed at less than one pound since i started doing it this way.
One of my cats is allergic to salmon. So when I buy their food in variety cartons, I take all the canned salmon flavors out. They weigh 5.5 oz for the big cans and 3 oz for the little cans. I put enough cans and padding in a box to weigh a little over 16 oz and seal it before shipping it to the cat's favorite SPCA animal shelter.
Before that I was alternately sending a one pound bag of rice or beans to relatives.
So far I've accidentally gone over the weight twice and just ate the cost, but I like the ideas here of having things of certain weights on hand in the car, plus something to open and re-tape the box if needed. Since I got a new kitchen scale, though, I've managed to get it right each time.
I have to say, for the majority of USPS shops I've done, the clerks have been nailing it and have gotten top marks, but I had a truly terrible one a few weeks ago. Most indifferent, minimalistic service ever!
I have found that cake mixes are usually 15 oz and that is a good start. But I often buy a box of baking soda that weighs 16 oz and I put into a USPS flat rate box and rewrap it and it weighs about 1 poid and 4-6 oz.
I ran short one time and ran to the dollar store and bought a book My friend laughed when she read the note I included. It says something that she did not have t read the book, I knew nothing about it but I bought it for its weight.