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December 26th, 2013

No Movie Because USPS Regulations

Woke up and checked the webcams on the phone app, but the one in the piano room was not showing up. I had just rebooted it yesterday. So I went all OCD and made sure all 6 had an IP address assigned to their MAC address in the router, and those matched the ports open so they can be seen from outside the home network. Took almost an hour because I had to pull 4 of them to check the wireless MAC address, which is on the base where it screws into the mounting bracket. Each cam has both a wi-fi MAC and a wired MAC and it gets confusing because you start with it wired.

So that delayed things a bit.

My food scale lied. The calendars, it said, weighed 6.2 oz, which USPS rounds up to 7, which costs $2.75 for domestic, $8.something for Canada and $12.something for overseas. I am glad I went to the PO at the crack of 10, when there was only one person in line ahead of me, and three clerks.

The nice lady weighed a calendar, and it was 7.6 oz, which rounds up to 8, so all the items were going to cost more. And I needed to fill out customs forms for the foreign ones, because of the spiral binding, which is not 1/4" deep, so should fall under the normal non-customs-able rules, but the PO apparently now says any non-flatness requires customs forms. So $3.10 for domestic, $9.something for Canada and $14.95 for overseas.

I spent $193 on stamps, and went out to the foyer to slap most of them them on the 19 domestic items, and loaded those 4 at a time into the chute. Then went home, because the online customs forms are a LOT easier to do than the by-hand ones.

By now it is too late to catch the matinée showing of anything.

At home, I fired up the PC and cranked out 6 customs forms, which had to be printed out, cut into three sections, and paper-clipped to the corresponding envelope. And then the appropriate postage attached, sort of.  $10 for Canada because I got $10 stamps, and one $10, two $2's and a $1 for the rest. I have stamps left over for future use. I expect one request from Sweden and maybe more from Israel. And I think Baltimore sister wants one for her boss.

Also at home, the rent/utilities bill was in the newspaper slot, which is where all mobile home park stuff goes, so I launched Quicken, updated the splits and printed a rent check.

The rest will go to co-workers, and assorted local friends, and I'll bring one to BASFA to auction, maybe. Maybe not. Last year's only went for $1 which is downright insulting.

But I digress. Back to the PO, this time it's just before 1 pm, and I am second in line again, this time there was only one clerk, and she was trying to explain in Chinglish to an Eastern European woman that the Post Office has no control over what the City mails to her, she needs to go to city hall. This took 10 minutes. She rang for backup, and another clerk opened up her post just after that conversation ended.

It was the same lady who sold me the stamps. She was grateful I had come with everything ready, because she still had to punch in each item, bar code scan it, stamp the forms and the postage, and print out a phony $0.00 tag to show it had been processed by a Postal Employee. Six items took 20 minutes.

Home, walked the rent check to the office (it's a short 2.5 blocks) and also filled out a form to swap my garbage can for the next bigger one. It's going to be a while, because they only process those on the 15th, and the swap doesn't take place till the first Monday of the following month. That would be February 3.

Back home to stay, played online, watched parts of a bowl game and several episodes of Millionaire Matchmaker the title role is an annoying bitch with a thing for the word "penis" but some of the dates she lines up for the rich guys are super-hot. She never chooses other millionaires as dates, she is all about gold diggers who can act sincere. My excuse is it was the only thing I could find without a Jesus Day theme or talking sports heads.

Snacked all day, so no dinner.

Tested the livingroom webcam's photo capability and got this cute shot:


And this one with the phone's camera:


Domino has become much more of a lap cat, but most of the time she prefers any of a dozen parking spots, now that there's no bully to chase her around. The only annoyance is she will yowl loudly if I go out of sight, but usually stops as soon as I say "Polo", or she finds me, whichever comes first. After Pumpkin died, she yowled constantly.

Plans for tomorrow:
Movie matinée
Bowl game - Nephew's Maryland is playing in the morning, my UW in the evening
Maybe go to the park (it was 68° this afternoon)

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