I blasted Kinko's with my prose of rage a couple of years ago, and now that Federal Express has bought them out (and apparently has a similar regard for its customers), it's time they got some too. We'll get this one kicked off movie-trailer style.

One Man.

One Package.

In a race against time, he must find a way to stop a multi-national machine from performing a task set forth by mission statements and corporate policy.

This spring, it's not the contents of the Package he's concerned about.

It's the life of every FedEx employee standing in his way.




Delivery Day.

[this film is not yet rated]

It began innocently enough. I ordered a few things from a well-known online outlet. As I was checking out, it indicated that there would be no charge to me for shipping. Fabulous.

A week later, I get their shipping details, along with a tracking number. They were using FedEx. Fine with me.

FedEx has one tiny little annoyance, however. They require you to be at home. Especially if you live in an apartment complex.

Once that package hits the local delivery route, it's a tough cycle to stop.

"Sorry we missed you at 11:40 AM on a weekday. What were you doing not at home? Were you watching One Life to Live at a friend's house? Oh well. We'll come back tomorrow at whatever time we feel like."

Unlike a lot of people who order crap online and have it shipped via FedEx, I actually go to work to earn money to pay for what I've ordered. Plus rent. This apartment complex that you're not allowed to leave deliveries out in the open doesn't let you move in for free.

Fun tangent -- The last time I had a similar experience with FedEx, I wasn't even employed. I was at home literally all the time. Bored to death. Playing old-school 8-bit video games on my computer. When do they actually make these so-called deliveries?

Apparently this little mom-and-pop store known as Federal Express has also recently undergone a few slight changes since I retrieved my last package. They now operate as like four different companies. There's FedEx Express (seems kind of redundant to me), FedEx Ground (some FedEx trucks are labeled Ground and some aren't, but are they not all rolling on the ground?), FedEx Home Delivery, and there's probably a FedEx Outer Space at this rate.

None of these facilities have anything to do with the others. They are all completely independant, autonomous entities, and they have the keenest ability to spot paperwork from the other operations from yards away.

"That's not our You-Weren't-At-Home post-it. You've come to the wrong place."

Customer service representative disappears to the back to retrieve a photocopied set of directions that could not have been more professionally rendered:


This is exactly what she handed me. Impressive.

This handout contained a wealth of information for me to take in and sort about. Here's a few things offhand.

  1. This happens a lot.
  2. These directions will take me to the proper FedEx facility where I can retrieve my package.
  3. Aforementioned FedEx facility closes at 5pm.
  4. This happens so much, the employees at the "wrong location" decided to do something about it.
  5. While the employees are proactive enough to "do something" about the situation, they're clearly too lazy to type anything up and have it be legible for some poor schmuck to squint at while careening down Airport Drive with one hand on the wheel.
  6. The original copy of these directions was lost months ago.
  7. Their copy machine is filthy.

Wait, don't they own Kinko's? What kind of example are they setting here?

Anyway, as she handed me this info-mine, she also told me that I had to call FedEx's main customer service line if I was to have any hope of retrieving the package within 72 hours of its original delivery date. Clever number, too. 1-800-Go-FedEx. I still haven't found the capslock key on my phone, but apparently it worked anyway.

Lo and behold, they pick up before the first ring.

Crap, it's an automated system. "Para continuar en Español, diga 'Español.'" Crap, it didn't say "toca uno." It's a voice-response automated system.

Sure, it's nifty technology. They can recognize speech in two different languages. Very tech.

But as much as I love computers, I do not want to talk to one. Ever.

That's what crazy people do.

But I need that package. FedEx, 1. Trey, 0.

My slip into senility was punctuated by a hearty, boisterous, "Schedule a Pickup!"

Damn you, FedEx.

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