I get the mail a couple times a week, at best. It's always jam-packed, but 95% of it will invariably end up in the trash can. I've gotten pretty good at picking out the junk mail and knowing which envelopes need to be opened and which can be expedited directly to the garbage. Dead give aways are the obvious computerized attempts at handwritten addresses or the ominous phrases printed on the envelope. Pretty much anything that says "Do Not Discard" or "Personal and Confidential" will never see the light of day at my house. I'm pretty sure I get more "personal and confidential" mail in a given week than the head of the CIA.
Then there is the barrage of catalogues from companies I have never purchased from, and never intend to. Some I have inherited from the previous home owner while other retailers have, through some form of surveillance, determined my demographic and send me catalogs they feel are appropriate. One that I find particularly irritating is the monthly arrival of Pottery Barn Kids, which I have learned not to open, because every time I do my house magically gets uglier. They may have enough sophisticated technology to know that we have children, but they obviously didn't go as far as to hack into any of our financial records, otherwise they would know that they are just wasting their paper on us. For the price of what it cost to furnish our entire home, Bethany could be sleeping in a beautiful pink and white "Madeline Canopy Bed", and if Matthew got a second job, she could have the matching curtains too. Maybe it costs so much because they go to the trouble of beating up the furniture for you to give it that lived-in look. "Manufacturer's Distressing" is the technical term for it. Personally, I am drawn to manufactuer's distressing not because it is considered chic, but because when the piece is eventually rammed into a wall or sideswiped by a tricycle, any damage will blend right in.
The other day I got the mail and it contained a letter that I look upon with heightened disgust, a letter from the HOA. Not an unusual happening, I must admit. It always begins by stating the "violation date" and it always has to do with our landscaping. We're the first house on the corner, so I'm sure that has something to do with it. This time it was the weeds. I thought they blended in nicely with the lawn, but apparently Kinney Management doesn't share my opinion. They really are sticklers, that HOA. Last year we were trying to do our part in the water conservation effort by not fixing our broken sprinkler system, but with complete disregard for the environment they demanded that we "revive our dying lawn". I guess not everyone sees the beauty of two-toned grass. Neither Matthew nor I had a clue how to fix the system, but before I resorted to buying a can of green spray paint my dad came over and saved the day. As a result of a well-watered lawn, however, we are now plagued by the violating weeds. You just can't make these people happy. I'm sure their yards are perfectly spotless. They probably shop at Pottery Barn.