You’ve Got Mail: Swoon 44
Growing up being the first to retrieve the mail was a treat. Discovering it on the entryway floor, sorting on my trip to “mail table”. Seeing who got what. There were actual letters (with actual news), vacation postcards, birthday cards (hopefully containing a five dollar bill), and Dad mail (bills). There was also the really good stuff….
Oh how I loved those as those invitations for the Columbia House monthly clubs. Records were my favorite, but the book ones were ok too…I would circle and rate my top 10 (plus 5 extra) favorite thumbnail images for hours while having my afternoon snack, Gilligan’s Island on the the background, multitasking at its best. Of course I never actually sent an order back…my parents raised us to be savvy of any and all scams at a young age. Sadly, Bazooka Bubble Gum “free prizes” (plus shipping and handling) and X-ray glasses or Sea Monkeys sold on the back of comic books were not deemed wise purchases. Publishers Clearing House envelopes went right in the trash, no visits from Ed McMahon for us.
Sometimes there would be an envelope…score…my reward for writing to a company, declaring my love for their product, and asking for free stickers. I would unpack my stickers from Bubble Yum or Campbell’s soup and put them in my sticker album. Friends would pass on tips of “good” companies who would actually send you stuff. It was all very civil in our sticker collecting world.
I had a book called Free Stuff for Kids, The best of free and up-to-a-dollar things kids can send for by mail! You can Google it… mine was the one with the purple bubble letters. Write the letter, walk to the mailbox, wait, wait, wait, and finally a package, oh the joy. Learning to wait was such a wonderful lesson, the whole process was about being polite, doing something without parental help, waiting, and only sometimes… being rewarded. Along with this book came a new house rule. When one was sending out for free stuff…that person must pay for the stamps…I look back and say, wow, that was good parenting.
My best mail coup ever… playing the mail in lottery for the ability to purchase Rolling Stones concert tickets at MSG. Only voucher holders (picked randomly from letters mailed in) could buy tickets, two tickets for each voucher. I sent in 10 self-addressed stamped envelopes (20 stamps). I received back TWO of them, two out of ten. FOUR tickets to The Stones. Score. My father had NO idea who the Stones were but he loved the return on my bet. Kat, do you know the odds, the odds on getting one back is terrible, the odds on TWO is… chuckle chuckle, back slap, rub. He was so proud, and even more puffed after learning his co-worker had paid for their kid to send in 200 envelopes (400 stamps!!) and did not get one back. Swoon.
I hate one kind of mail…chain letters…they scare me. So bossy, do this or else. I really believed them. I could not afford 10 stamps to ward off every chain letter demon so I would throw them out, super quickly, hoping it was fast enough to not be counted as delivered mail.
I just received two e-chain letters, these were lovely, asking for Quarantine Recipes to be passed on. I don’t really use recipes, I kind of just wing it. My recipe would be do you have chicken, no, ok use shrimp, mix with some good spices and cook til it looks right. Useless.
I adore my chain letter ladies, so I am sending them the recipe below… and also sharing with you.
Recipe for a Day in Quarantine:
1 good night’s rest with some morning smiles and caffeine
1 part exercise
1 part work
1 part entertainment
1 part connection with loved ones
1 part self preservation and care
1 part helping others in need
1 part cleaning and organization
1 part being thankful
Sprinkle some joy on top
Now appreciate the day you created and repeat tomorrow.
Be well team…