My Box of Meat (unpaid public service announcement)

So UPS sucks in my area. Don’t get me started. Anyway I come home on Tuesday to find two missed delivery stickies in my foyer. On Wednesday, by the time I had a chance to call during business hours, the delivery truck was already on its way to my house (where no one would be there to sign for the package, and the third delivery would fail). Annoying.

So for reasons that are too terrible to get into, I was not willing or able to go to the UPS center to pick up the package after work. Instead, I paid $4 to have it rerouted to my office.

Meanwhile, UPS was unable to give me information about the package. It was apparently addressed to me and F but UNDER F’S LAST NAME (insult, injury, etc). This is the sort of stunt one of our many Catholic relatives, who have decided they’re tired of waiting for us to tie the knot, might pull (Make It So etc). The sender said only “Omaha,” according to the lady at UPS.

I’m sure you’ve guessed what I didn’t, that it was a large box of meat from the Omaha Steak Company. It turned out to be from F’s dad and his boyfriend, who should know better than to send it to our house, since they know we don’t have a doorman or any way of retrieving it, but was nonetheless a very generous gift on their part.If I had known it was coming, or what the contents were, I would have called UPS and rerouted it earlier, but I’m sure he wanted to surprise us.

The box was rerouted to my office and unfortunately arrived there on the day of Sales Conference, so I had to lug the thing (and it was about the size of a small refrigerator, and from having carried it around all day I would guess it weighed about 25 pounds) to our illustrious distributor, where it sat politely in the back of the room while we pitched our Summer 2011 books. Periodically someone would ask, “What’s in the box?” and one of my colleagues would say, “Meat,” and everyone would break into fits of giggles. After Sales Conference, there was the international sales rep cocktail party, which the box of meat also attended.

After many grapples with subway turnstiles and a long and uncomfortable walk, I arrived at home and opened the box of meat. It was clearly marked “refrigerate immediately after opening: contents extremely perishable” which was why I’d decided to wait. Everyone in my office assured me dry ice was much colder than I could ever imagine and the meat inside would still be good. Alas it was revealed there was no dry ice inside–just meat. I guess (according to the nice lady at Omaha Steaks) they pack dry ice according to how far the journey is, and since I just live over the river from the New Jersey warehouse where the Omaha steaks made their last stop, and I was supposed to have received the box four days ago, the plan didn’t work out perfectly. And unfortunately the perishables had perished. The top cut sirloin steaks were brown-black inside their vacuum packs, and even through the thick plastic I could smell the unhappiness. Although they were only briefly released into my kitchen, there is still a little bit of a twinge of rancid meat. My heart wept for the cows who died in vain.

So I sadly called Omaha Steak Company–my intention was actually to ask if I might be wrong that the steaks were rancid (I didn’t want to give up hope, not after my many adventures with the box of meat). But the lady on the other end didn’t ask any questions. She just said, “That’s really too bad that happened. We better go ahead and send you another box. Why don’t you give me a better address to deliver to this time, so we can make sure you get it?”

I was so pleased with her friendly and generous customer service that I felt I needed to blog and recommend the Omaha Steak Company for everybody’s holiday needs. I wish I hadn’t done so much shopping already, because they have some seriously excellent gift packages. Definitely next year.

The best part of this story, at least from my office’s point of view, is that another box of meat will be shipped to me there next Tuesday. Maybe I can get it invited to another holiday party.

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52 Responses to My Box of Meat (unpaid public service announcement)

  1. Karissa says:

    my brother orders from there and loves it. i got it once for james for xmas too. i am really really sad for the cows that died in vain — though i hope it was only one chunk of meat from one cow and the rest of that cow was put to good use elsewhere.

  2. Oh yay, a happy ending!

    But really, let’s be honest: the best part of this story is the title. MY BOX OF MEAT.

  3. Roberta says:

    The image of anyone wrestling a 25 lb box of meat through subway turnstiles makes me smile, if not laugh out loud. Your story reminds me of a Christmas about ten years ago. My mother-in-law sent us a 3 lb box of cheese from VT. We lived in Santa Fe. The UPS driver tossed it over our chain link fence much to our dog’s delight. He had a fantastic time ripping and tearing through the corrugate to find the prize inside. We found him in the backyard, our three-legged shepherd, with his one front leg slung over the top of a hunk of cheddar. I tell you, he was smiling.

  4. Ello says:

    You made me cry laughing. Oh boy! I needed that.

    Lugging around a box of rancid meat to conferences!!!!

    Oh my God, I am crying.

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