June 07, 2008

How to Ask for Your Business and Lose it at the Same Time

Gentle Reader:

I'm not going to be cranky, because, Adoro says I'm a grown up now! I may blog on what that means later. It's a good thing.

Anyway, back to my already scheduled irritation.

Friends: I know there are folks among us (yes, some of them read this blog on the sly), many of them are Roman Catholic, many of them are what I would call the Traditional crowd. In my less charitable moments (reverting to my childhood!) I refer to them as Trad Vampires because they suck all the joy out of Christian living and Holy Mass because they are too full of their own holiness to emerge from the darkness. These are the folks who spill buckets of blood, sweat, tears and verbiage over such critical issues as: "I could not concentrate on the Elevation because Father's vestments were all crooked" or "Father prays a very good Mass but he moves his head too much during the Homily".

Trads are not all bad. I share their concerns over a Mass properly celebrated but for crying out loud, so one of the Deacons during a TLM (with very complicated rubrics) made a human mistake, get over it! Don't attack the Rev. Mr. Redface or Father I-Thought-it-Went-Very-Well-Considering This-is-Only-Our-2nd-TLM over these minor quibbles in the Sacristy before they can even get their vestments off. Honestly, do us all a favor and pretend you didn't notice and go pray somewhere rather than share with all of us your memorization of the Missal Mr. Smarty Pants. IMHO, there is a world of difference between deliberately distorting the rubrics and an unintentional mistake. Unfortunately, some fail to make any distinction: a mistake, any mistake, is a plot by their favorite list of suspects (see below)

There's also a segment of the population, Trad Catholics among them, who see the following characters lurking behind every tree and hiding in every closet:

*Methodisssssts (R.I.P. Harvey Korman!)

I do a lot of reading and I subscribe to a lot of publications. I like to mix it up between dissenting and faithful, liberal and conservative. I don't, by any means, agree with everything I read but I like to know what's going on, what other people think, and form my own opinion and, yes, conscience in the way the Catechism intended.

I got a renewal notice from a fairly well-known Catholic publication. Like many publishers, they are struggling with increased postage fees. What they fail to comment on is ALL of us in the U.S. are paying more for postage these days. That said, I feel more pain regarding commodity and oil prices these days than I do over postage increases simply because I conduct more business online these days but I'll let that slide.....

Anyway, rather than just mention postage increases for the reason their subscription fees are going up (not too horribly much I might add) they throw in this little comment while they are trying to encourage you to also subscribe or only subscribe to their online version:

"We strongly recommend that if you continue a hardcopy subscription you take advantage of one of [the] following options as a backup. It's an economic way to protect yourself from the shamefully ineffecient and anarchist Post Office "

Ok, a moment to calm myself....

I admit it hit me where I live since my Dad retired form the Postal Service-after serving Our Country in the Marines and I worked there myself for 8 years and put myself thru college. Like most government jobs, a large number of veterans are employed there. How many anarchists and commies served this country? I don't know, call the Canadian Consulate.

Now I'm SURE someone is going to tell me: "Oh, I'm sure the folks working there are fine but the organization is corrupt" That's funny, I hear the same argument by Catholic Church haters.

"Protection" my Little Drama Queen? Funny. I don't see the Postal Service planning an insurrection anytime soon. How can they? They are barely making a profit. True.

It's true there are ineffeciencies. But, there are with any large organization. So, if we all go online you are going to tell me everything is great there, right? You need to be aware that not EVERYONE is online. You fail to get that anyone and everyone can get mail delivery-even most folks in prison. Seems to me Comcast has a monopoly (like the PO) on this end of the town. Try calling them when your lines go down and you can't read the latest issue. No, your customers are going to be calling YOU, publisher. How come I can't read the .pdf? How come I can't turn my computer on. How come I can't print this issue? How come I can't print this in color? How come I'm not getting my renewal notices in my email? How come my credit card online payment won't work? How come your website is lame and clunkier than all get out? Exaggerations? Nope. I used to work in Customer Service. If you dump one, better be ready to pick up the slack and find a new way of doing business.

BTW, it may also help if you clear out your website general email inbox once and a while. Thanks.

Oh,and I'm not renewing,I'm too busy booking my next vacation to Havana (*meow*). It's too bad too because I really think you have some of the best columnists in the business. Sorry. Bye.

Update 4:40 p.m.:I should print this post out and drop it in the mail! That'll show 'em! LOL! Seriously, thank God for this blog. It's a nice vent for my anger. Fortunately, my humor is never far from the surface. I'm already laughing about this whole thing. I think I'm the Drama Queen. *sigh*


Blogger Terry Nelson said...

I would say something but I'm afraid now. I'm thinking you don't like my craziness any longer.

But anyway - this is a good post.

Oh, and do you notice I often post comments here? Free of charge too.

June 07, 2008 2:52 PM  
Blogger Adoro te Devote said...

I'd rather post a trot than go to the post office.

June 07, 2008 5:12 PM  
Blogger Fr. Andrew said...


...idealism...and then the real world. Where does reality and idealism meet? Hopefully at prudence. No wonder she is the mother of all natural virtues. Keep working that DM for those of us who lack prudence.

June 07, 2008 7:25 PM  
Blogger Terry Nelson said...

I think Fr. Andrew means me.

June 07, 2008 8:05 PM  
Blogger Adrienne said...

Well, ok then. Feel better? I know I do:)

June 07, 2008 8:56 PM  
Blogger Ray from MN said...

Well,I only got to the third paragraph, and I already found me a 5 LJ bit!

"he moves his head too much"


Most won't get that, but it proves that Cathy really does listen when you talk or type to her.

I can hardly wait to get to paragraph number 4.

June 07, 2008 9:05 PM  
Blogger Ray from MN said...


Here after I give you a record number of LJs, you go and compliment the Post Office (they call it the Postal Service, these days, I guess).

Well, my Dad put in about 20 years or so delivering the mail, one brother probably will have 25 years as a manager in the Postal Service's real estate division, managing remodeling, repairs and new construction of small post offices in the Northland District, and one sister is a mail processing manager in Duluth and probably will have 15 years when she retires.

I have lots of Postal Blue running in my veins.

I have two comments for whiners about the efficiency of the Postal Service:

1. When is the last time that you received your telephone or electricity bill late?

2. When you want to send a letter to your sister in Maui, Zone 9, if you must ask, how much do you think that UPS or FedEx will want to deliver it? The Postal Service will ask for 42 cents.

UPS and FedEx used to dream at night about destroying the Postal Service (and spent millions by day lobbying to implement that) and taking over its responsibilities, closing down unneeded offices and eliminating surplus employees.

When they realized that every single person in the United States is guaranteed by law daily mail delivery (at least to a box near their homes), they backed off and now both of them work cooperatively with the Postal Service.

Each helps the other provide the best service for U.S. residents.

June 07, 2008 9:28 PM  
Anonymous adoro said...

Try the post office in Mexico...good luck getting anything anywhere!

And Ray, for the record, my comment above was actually just meant to be nonsensical, hope you didn't take it as a slam.

June 07, 2008 10:33 PM  
Blogger Tom in Vegas said...

First and foremost, let me state unequivocally that I'd much rather use the USPS than the unreliable UPS any day of the week, for ANY type of mail.

As far as the ultra. trads go, I'm in complete agreement with you, and this quote says it best, "[T]here is a world of difference between deliberately distorting the rubrics and an unintentional mistake." Very well stated.

Havana??? Can you hold off a few more years? The dinosaurs running the country there are looking for a museum where they can kick the bucket. It should (I pray) get better after that. Why don't you come visit me in Vegas? LOL!

June 08, 2008 2:39 AM  
Blogger Cathy_of_Alex said...

Ray: I knew you'd get all worked up, my postal buddy! Go check your blood pressure, please. Thanks.

Adoro: I'm glad you clarified that becuase for a minute there I thought: "Why is Adoro talking about the trots?" LOL! Then, I realized you were probably watching the Belmont and I understood. LOL!

Father: Stay tuned. More on that later! :-)

Adrienne: Yep! :-)

Tom: I knew you'd agree with the trad part. :-)

June 08, 2008 8:28 AM  
Blogger Cathy_of_Alex said...

Oh and Ter: Don't be afraid! I'm sure Father was talking about me. You always think it's about YOU, don't you? LOL!

June 08, 2008 8:29 AM  
Blogger Fr. Andrew said...

Actually, the need for the intersection of ideals and prudence is for everyone (me too!). But my comment was directed towards the quote from the publication.

Cathy is cranky, I thrust in a serious reply where none was requested!

June 08, 2008 8:40 AM  
Blogger Mac McLernon said...

You know, I'm sure they meant anarchic (as in chaotic) rather than anarchist (as in political bent)!

(just a passing thought!)


June 08, 2008 3:20 PM  
Blogger swissmiss said...

The commies have been hiding at the USPS all these years? What happened to the ruse of being college professors?

My SIL works at UPS (not USPS), that makes me wonder...

Any suggestions on ONE good publication to read? One that is succinct and edited (unlike the Wanderer), easy-to-read (not like First Things) and tending on traddy and edifying (not like my lapsing St. Anthony Messenger)?

June 08, 2008 5:23 PM  
Blogger Cathy_of_Alex said...

Father: Your comments are always most welcome. Keep them coming, please.

Swissy: "college profs" Good point. I do enjoy This Rock and the National Catholic Register very much. Actually, I should resubscribe to Homilitics and Pastoral Review. I like that one too.

Mac: You make a very good point. It's possible, but I'm sceptical based upon the usual editorial tone of said paper.

June 08, 2008 6:56 PM  

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