Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Going Postal, part 4

IV. The Address Change
(April, 2007)

A few months before my wife and I got married, we decided, because we did not care to be slaves to the beast that is renting, that we would buy a house. We figured this was a good idea because not only would our mortgage payment be equal or less than our rental payment, but because—now hindsight is 20/20 here—at the time, the housing market in Utah was quite figuratively on fire. It got to a point where we would look at a house in the morning and there would be three or four offers on it by that night. So, after searching one end of the valley to the other, we finally found the nexus of the universe we currently call home.

No joke, our grid address is 4321 South 1234 West.
However, before that, there was a multi-week interim where the Mrs. (or Ms., as it were at the time) had moved out of her apartment, but our house had not yet closed. For the time, she followed her husband-to-be's cue in slackitude and came to live in my parents' basement. Though there were the normal (expected) cliches, it was actually a rather painless experience.

Yeah, it was kind of like that.
We closed on our house two days before we took the plunge/tied the knot/[insert wedding metaphor here]. In addition to the myriad of paperwork that needs to be filled out when getting married/buying a house—change of name, escrow papers, signing away firstborn, and the like—we realized we also had to fill out Change of Address forms, informing the USPS that we would no longer be residents of my parents' abode. And as the pattern of the past three posts still held true, that is when the trouble began.

We filled out the CoA forms (as those in the know call them) and moved into our new home. Sure enough, a few days later, mail started arriving in our mailbox that had been forwarded from Sandy. Notice how I said just "mail" and avoided the use of the adjective "our". This is because it was not just our mail... unless "our" refers to my parents as well. That is right: the same postal worker who did not know the difference between South Dakota and South Africa must have processed our Change of Address forms, because they transferred all the residents of my parents' house to our new address, parents' included.

I personally believe that US Americans need Change of Address forms...
After speaking with multiple postal workers and filling out multiple forms, we were able to convince the USPS that my parents indeed still lived in their house and that is where their mail should be sent. Sadly, most of the damage had already been done, as any number of junk mail databases were updated with our address as the new target. To this day, we receive junk mail addressed to my parents on a pretty-much daily basis.

Although, to be fair, I suppose that is karma, as I still give out my parents' phone number whenever any dubious source asks for my contact info.

Sorry mom and dad.


Dalin said...

I learned a fun trick a while ago for dealing with junk mail. Any time something shows up with a postage-paid envelope enclosed, just tape the envelope to something large and REALLY heavy, cinder blocks come to mind, and drop it off at the post office. Whatever company sent you the envelope will be forced to pay the outrageous shipping costs when your little present arrives at their offices.