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July 9th, 2007

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07:22 pm - Never trust a non-profit
I think just about everyone I know has received address labels from some charity or other. Dad has. Charlie has. My mom has. In fact, a bizarre combination of Charlie's last name, my first name, and my last name, an even more bizarre combination of names ("Charlestina"), my 9-year-old nephew and my dog, Chewbacca, have also received address labels from some charity or other.

I, on the other hand, despite being PRE-APPROVED!!! for every major credit card (and some I've never even heard of), and despite being the recipient of what may be "Your Last Catalog!" from uncountable mail-order companies at least four or five times a week, AND despite having actually donated to various charities in the past, have never received any address labels of my own.

I have to admit that Chewie doesn't send out much mail, so I have some extra ones, but I got a little bit tired of explaining about why my return address belonged to a Star Wars character, so I figured, Hey! I'll get my own!

It started out pretty simply. Disabled American Veterans (henceforth to be known as "DAV") was an obvious choice. I mean, they have a thingy on their website where you can order free address labels! I mean, it's not technically free, because I think there's some sort of donation or shipping charge involved, but hey -- address labels! Plus, I am actually a disabled American veteran by the way these things are reckoned, and so it seemed a perfect fit! I filled out the form, put in my credit card number for however much it was, and sat back smugly in anticipation.

Soon, yes, SOON, I would have address labels with my actual name and address on them! They would be all mine!

Then the confirmation page came up. "You should receive your address labels within four to six weeks," it informed me.

WHAAAATTT??? Four to six WEEKS? I could write my own set of address labels by hand in that amount of time! I could hire a calligrapher to do them up all fancy! What the hell kind of free label service is this?

I grumped around as I perused the rest of the site, when I noticed that I actually qualified to BE a member of DAV due to my status as a disabled veteran. Turns out, they don't care how disabled you are, as long as you're disabled! I'm only ten-percent disabled, you see, but they were fine with that! They're like an equal-opportunity disabler! Disablee? Disability enabler?

Wait, that didn't come out right.

Anyway, the more I read about the organization, the more it seemed like a good idea to join. Not only would joining donate money (there's a membership fee), but it would also get me all the perks of being a DAV member! There are other good things that go along with that, such as, when Congress looks around for disabled veterans, DAV can show them their membership numbers, and just maybe Congress will go, "Wow, gosh, there are a lot of disabled veterans. Maybe we ought to shell out some money to help them!"

Shut up, it could happen.

Congress could pass laws to help veterans!

Stop laughing.

It's a good organization, with a mission I truly believe in.

Plus, I bet you get even COOLER address labels if you're a member!

So, I went through the process and signed up, paid my dues, and was on my way to being an official Lifetime Member of DAV.

This was on June 6.

After approximately one week, I received my welcome packet! I tore it open with glee, but all it contained was a newsletter explaining where my local chapter was, contact numbers, and so forth.

Today, I received two largish packets from DAV! Surely one of them would have my address labels! I ripped into the one like a kid on Christmas ... but no. Nothing but a fat packet of various brochures for discounts available to DAV members.

I opened the second -- it contained my Lifetime Member Membership Card and my official DAV pin.

In two days, it will have been six weeks since I ordered my free address labels. I now have cards and schedules and coupons and even a PIN.

But no labels.

And tomorrow, my grandmother is going to be wondering who the hell "Chewbacca" is, and why he or she is living at my house and sending her a letter.

I tell you -- address labels come like a thief in the night when you least expect them. They're not something you can pursue on your own with any success. You either get them, or you don't.

Sadly, I had to discover this the hard way.

On the good side, it is quite a nice pin.

(33 comments | Leave a comment)


[User Picture]
Date:July 10th, 2007 03:43 am (UTC)
I had some unused address labels sitting in a pile of mail on my kitchen table. The last time my parents visited, my mom picked them up, looked carefully at them, and said, "Amber Lim?"

That's not even close to my last name! I hadn't even noticed.
[User Picture]
Date:July 10th, 2007 10:16 pm (UTC)
Hahahaha! At least it wasn't "Lim K. Amber" or something. I need to make a list of all the bizarre naming schemes on some of these labels.

I think if I ever have a daughter, though, I will name her "Charlestina."
[User Picture]
Date:July 10th, 2007 03:46 am (UTC)

I needed some funny. Does the government run this joint? That would explain a lot.

Ok, I looked and it doesn't. There's hope for your labels yet. Or maybe you should try the DAC (Disabled American Capitalists) site. Tell them you are an ex oil tycoon with gout. I think the government makes sure that they are well taken care of.

I smell another web site coming on...
[User Picture]
Date:July 10th, 2007 10:14 pm (UTC)



Could work.
[User Picture]
Date:July 10th, 2007 03:52 am (UTC)
tell you -- address labels come like a thief in the night when you least expect them. They're not something you can pursue on your own with any success. You either get them, or you don't.

This is true, however I have discovered the secret to getting them. Move. I moved in October and I've been getting scads of them ever since. I know, it seems a little extreme, but it works. I now have more free dog and cat address labels than I can shake a stick at.
[User Picture]
Date:July 10th, 2007 10:11 pm (UTC)
Erm. "Extreme" is right.


You know, I think I would rather calligraph address labels with a box cutter and my own blood than move.

But, you know, hey, I might change my mind. Good tip! :-)
[User Picture]
Date:July 10th, 2007 04:03 am (UTC)
You know, you could have ordered some from the company that prints your checks probably for not too much money and gotten way more than you would ever probably use. I did it and I still have bunches. And at least they spelled my name right.

Of course I can't bitch because I've gotten a few of the free ones too but they all have my maiden name on them so they don't really count. TH has tons too. Maybe they like boys better?
[User Picture]
Date:July 10th, 2007 10:10 pm (UTC)

Naw, I get my checks from the bank and I don't think they offer address labels.

I need to watch the Sunday paper for one of those el-cheapo address label coupon ads.


Day 34: Still no labels. The empty envelopes sit silently, mocking me.
[User Picture]
Date:July 10th, 2007 04:25 am (UTC)


Oh Ghods... I should KNOW better when YOU use a phrase like "It started OUT simply enough..."

Duck and RUN!!!
[User Picture]
Date:July 10th, 2007 10:08 pm (UTC)

Re: (Snerk!)

Story of my life ... everything starts out so simply ...
[User Picture]
Date:July 10th, 2007 02:08 pm (UTC)
You know I had a similar problem. My parents got all these cool address labels, with like snoopy and Charlie brown on them or some crazy blinged out gold with diamonds and just all these cool ones. I used to cut their names off and write mine above it so I'd get to use at least part of a cute label. They even sent them to both of my dogs (though really my dogs were also apparently big smokers and were getting all sorts of ciggarette coupons too). I never got any labels no matter what I did.

Until I moved away. Then suddenly my parents got labels with my name on them and their address. The irony still kills me. You vets have a wicked sense of humor.
[User Picture]
Date:July 10th, 2007 10:07 pm (UTC)

You can't trust dogs, man. Turn your back for one minute and they're out there smoking and playing poker.

I know.

I've seen PICTURES!!!
[User Picture]
Date:July 10th, 2007 02:37 pm (UTC)
I never got them in the mail until I got married.
Now I get them all the time.
with my maiden name on them.
you can never win.

Thankfully, our dogs haven't gotten any yet.
[User Picture]
Date:July 10th, 2007 10:06 pm (UTC)
Now I get them all the time.
with my maiden name on them.

*dies laughing*

See, now that is JUST how it goes, I tell you!
[User Picture]
Date:July 10th, 2007 03:13 pm (UTC)
While going thru my Gran's things, packing up her house, I found enough labels to fill a medium size U-Haul moving box - 18x18x16. I was using one as a trash bin because we'd run out of bags and when I realized how many labels there were, used it exclusively for them. Of course, she donated to every cause known - and they all had her name and address correct. I get scads of labels from my unsurance agent (That was a typo, but I'm not fixing it) but refuse to use them as they are printed with my legal name, not Charlee and I do detest my given name. I buy blanks from Office Schnaks and print my own. humph.
[User Picture]
Date:July 10th, 2007 10:05 pm (UTC)
Hahhahaha! I think the typo is more accurate, actually ....

Did any of the labels have her actual name spelled correctly?
[User Picture]
Date:July 10th, 2007 04:33 pm (UTC)
Brace yourself for the heresy: I've always thrown out all my free labels.

I used to get them from the Humane Society and whenever I'd get around to mailing something, I'd just automatically write my name & address before even remembering "Whoops! I have labels!"

After awhile I stopped saving them since they never, ever got used. I finally started throwing them straight in the trash as soon as they arrived in the mail. Actually, it makes me cranky they're using money on stuff like labels that I just throw out. I want them to take care of animals, not create extra paper waste that's going straight to the landfill. Grump.
[User Picture]
Date:July 10th, 2007 10:04 pm (UTC)

And labels are so GOOD for things! I mean, you can put them on packages and letters! And if you take a dish to a pot-luck, you can put a label on your dish so you know you'll get it back! And if you need to send out a self-addressed, stamped envelope, you can use it for the To AND From addresses! And if you take stuff to work, you can put labels on them to show that they're yours and not work property! And put them on your food things in the office fridge!

And then if they have cute pictures, you can just cut out the cute pictures and have cute picture stickers!

The waste, the horrible, horrible WASTE!

[User Picture]
Date:July 10th, 2007 08:30 pm (UTC)
I tell you -- address labels come like a thief in the night when you least expect them.

So... then maybe your address labels were raptured, and you, the sinner, were left behind to only use Chewie's labels until The Final Battle, where the address labels will have the names of the four horsemen of the Apocalypse instead of yours.
[User Picture]
Date:July 10th, 2007 09:13 pm (UTC)
"Uh oh, insufficient postage. We'll have to send this back to ... er .. 'Pestilence, c/o Four Horsemen, LLC, 666 Syphilis Way, Purgatory'. Purgatory -- isn't that near Bunnlevel, North Carolina?"

"Couldn't tell ya, Ed."

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