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Tag Archives: mail

I Am The Scofflaw Man

26 Oct

October 26, 2017

I got a letter from the DMV the other day. Apparently I owed some money for an unpaid parking ticket. OK, it happens. I don’t usually get parking tickets and I pay them when I do but I guess one slipped by.

The letter informed me that I had to pay it by a certain date or my registration would be suspended. Again, OK. I’ll just pay it. How much? The letter didn’t say. It directed me to a website.

I went to the website and it asked me to enter the summons number. OK, I’ll just go back to the letter and see what it says.

It said nothing, No summons number.

So the website was useless and the letter almost as bad. It had a phone number which I called and when I asked how much money I owed I was told to check the website. I told them I needed a summons number. They told me to check the previous letter they sent. I told them I did not receive a previous letter. They told me to check the website. And so it went. Whoopee.

Being unable to make a payment because I had no clue what I had to pay, I had no choice but to request a hearing. There, I figured, they could tell me what I had to pay and I’d pay it.

But that makes too much sense.

I went to the hearing, where I explained to the judge that I knew I owed money and I fully intended to pay. I explained that I couldn’t find any information anywhere from anyone about how much I owed and I was forced to request a hearing just to find out. She informed me that the purpose of the hearing was merely to discover if I had been sent the proper notices. I said I did not receive any prior notices. The representative from the state showed the judge copies of letters I never received. Since they had mailing receipts the judge ruled that I was properly served. Guilty.

But that’s fine. I got a ticket and I knew I had to pay it. That’s what I came for. So Your Honor, how much do I owe?

She didn’t know. And the state’s representative didn’t know either. He had copies of letters that he submitted to the court but very unhelpfully did not provide me any copies. But since none of those had late fines included they would be moot anyway. So I knew I had to pay, and the judge ordered me to pay, and I was ready and prepared to pay. But NO ONE COULD TELL ME HOW MUCH I HAD TO PAY.

After the hearing, which only took five minutes and I was in and out of the DMV office in less than twenty minutes, I was given a phone number of an office where they would finally be able to tell me how much I owed. This number was only available to people who had a hearing. Why I couldn’t call it weeks before is anyone’s guess. But at least I knew how much I had to pay.

It was $68.

All that nonsense because the state could not print a summons number and an amount due on their notice.

Some time back there was a bill up for vote in Congress and they were given copies of the bill, which numbered hundreds of pages, mere minutes before the vote. The Democratic leadership told them (look it up, this happened) they’d have to vote for the bill so they could find out what was in it.

I had to plead guilty to find out what I was pleading guilty to.

The system is nuts.

 

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There’s Something Odd Going On Here.

12 Sep

September 12, 2017

For many, many years, my building had the mail delivered by one regular postman. Other than his regular summer vacations, he was always here at about 1:oo. At some point his route changed and he started coming at 4:00, but whichever time he was supposed to be here, he was here.

He was really good and dependable. Packages were brought to our door and we knew him, and he knew us, by name and friendly greetings. Eventually he retired and of course for years now our mail service has sucked. He was probably the only good mailman in Brooklyn.

Everyone loves 1950’s clip art!

I’ve detailed before how packages get stolen in my building, letters don’t arrive, and the postal carrier shows up anywhere from noon to six pm. (But I will give him credit. Most of the mail ends up in the correct boxes, at least half of the time.)

But lately the mail has been showing up at close to 8 pm. This can’t be a regular route. What postal worker is out delivering mail at that hour?

And it gets odder. I’ve seen the mailman twice. Both times he was delivering the mail with an “assistant,” an older woman that has to be his wife. She doesn’t wear a uniform and takes mail out of a school knapsack.

Also, I get a service from the USPS. They email me pictures of my mail that is scheduled to be delivered that day. For a while it was spot on, now the letters in the email arrive about three days later. If at all.

So am I right in assuming that much of my mail is sitting in that guy’s living room, along with piles of other people’s mail that my carrier may never get to because he has fallen so far behind?

 

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