Every Saturday, come hell or high water, rain or shine, the publisher of (not one mind you; two) weekly circulars distribute their savings packs to every house in my neighborhood, and to the best of my knowledge, all 2 million homes on Long Island.
In my neck of the woods they’re called Pennysavers; a bunch of classifieds for used cars, announcements for garage & yard sales, a crossword puzzle a deaf, dumb and blind chimpanzee could finish in 2 minutes, ads from people selling their used mattresses and other junk from their basement, unlicensed handy-men posing as contractors-for-hire, weekly ads from every supermarket within 35 square miles, a K-Mart, Wal-Mart, Kohls and Target circular and two books of coupons rolled up in a .0002 mil plastic bag.
All right, I admit, I checked it out 4 years ago when I first got to the neighborhood and quickly placed it in the round file.
From the second Saturday since I moved in 'til this past weekend, I’ve had 416 of these damn things which I choose to not read, tossed in the general direction of my house. The retired couple in the beat up old blue Ford station wagon that take turns throwing them from the passenger window probably use the 1/3 a penny salary they get for each unit packaged and delivered to subside their rent at the local trailer park.
God, I hate them. Not the old people who deliver them, or for that matter the bargain hunters who read them regularly, I despise the “Pennysavers” themselves. At least once a month half the crap in the bag spills out and proceeds to blow around all over the neighborhood. By Saturday evening, 3/4 of the people on my block still haven’t even bothered to pick them up and throw them away. The reams of newsprint that is wasted annually must be mind-boggling.
“All right”, I say to myself, “I’ll call the publisher and advise them I wish to opt out of the free weekly “delivery” of their complementary circulars.” Needless to say, that was about as fruitful as pissing up a rope.
Next week comes and I’m still tripping over these damn things strew on every sidewalk from here to Montauk. “What if I call and ask a local legislator if this is even legal?” I mean maybe a lawmaker will agree these Pennysavers / Carrier Pigeon / Shoppers Guide circulars amount to nothing more than “unsolicited litter”. When I contacted a staffer, all I got were questions how much I planned to donate toward Congressman Douchebag’s next campaign.
OK, I’ve decided it’s time to take matters into my own hands. Next Saturday when Herman and Lilly come down the block (I’ll know they’re close when I hear the muffler and rusted wire hanger dragging down the street) I’ll wave them down and politely ask them to save the toss. I don’t read either circular they deliver.
Well, needless to say, that didn’t offer any results either. My next step, wait for them to come down my block and the moment they toss their packet of crap toward my house, I’ll pick it up and toss it right back into the window of their car…and if it beans Granny in the head, or knocks the Chesterfield King right out of her mouth, ce la vie.
Viola, success. No more Pennysavers. (Hooray! Do the Snoopy Dance!) Well…not for that one proceeding week at least. Turns out the only lasting result of my throwback was Grandpa rewired and duct taped the muffler so as to afford himself the element of quiet, stealth-like delivery; thus leaving me unable to detect his next weekly round.
This is getting nuts, I know I’m making way too much of this but it’s becoming an obsession. My logical side of me says, “just pick them up and toss them away, stop trying to reinvent the wheel, there are more important things in life.” My emotional side shouts back, “This is important; stop worrying about getting laid, screw politics, to hell with the Mideast…you can’t let them win!” I feel like a schitzophrenic Bill Murray at war with a gopher for crissake.
Provided this rant doesn’t calm me down, my next move is start collecting all the unread copies strewn in front of my house and most of the other homes in town and start warehousing them in my garage. (Screw the Cougar, I’ll park it out on the street for a couple weeks in the rain). Then, I’ll charter one of those huge fire fighting helicopters with the big hopper underneath and dump them all over the corporate offices of my new found nemisis…the Long Island Browser.
If that doesn’t work, guess I’ll just move us back into the city, where my heart is anyway.
I just previewed my rant and feel better already. If you’re a suburbanite, please don’t post saying how much you love getting and reading your copy, I wouldn’t begrudge you your bargain-hunting pleasures…I just want the publishers to either stop throwing 'em at me (and if I’m really lucky, everyone else who doesn’t read them) or put em in the mail like every other two-bit marketing company has to.
[edited "="s to make it fit-Czarcasm]