Some trips to the mailbox of late have been more than interesting and frustrating. I’m not referring to just the ridiculous number of sweepstakes offers or Medicare recruitment letters. It’s the letters, notepads, address labels, pens and coins from dozens and dozens of charities seeking donations. I don’t ask for these freebies, and I wonder why they spend money on these things in an effort to coerce me to give $10, $20 or more to their causes. And honestly, they don’t convince me to pick up my checkbook and start writing.
Somewhere along the line of using online purchases, paying bills or donating to a charity, my name has been placed on mailing lists that could result weekly in enough mail for a good size bonfire. That’s where most of these unsolicited items end up.
If you are an adult whose parents have passed on and you handled their estates — look out. Even 30 years after my dad’s death and three years after my mom’s passing, I still get mail addressed to them from so many charities and political causes. I’ve tried sending some of these back with “deceased” written across the envelope with little success.
Don’t get me wrong. I enjoy finding an interesting offer or coupons or a greeting card in the mailbox. I just wish there was a limit to all the junk. And I know what causes I want to support without solicitations.
I’ve learned, however, to closely inspect my mail each day for fear of overlooking a bill or other important letter. In November, I received just such an official document from the Ohio County Circuit Court office. It was a summons notifying me that I have been drawn to serve as a juror. I quickly filled out the enclosed questionnaire and mailed it off to Circuit Court Clerk Brenda Miller.
I’ve always felt that it is our duty to serve the courts when called. As a reporter, I sat in numerous courtrooms as a spectator covering cases. Once I actually made it to the jurors’ box when called to be a juror. Only at the last minute, I was told to go home. I was a little disappointed.
Since COVID has changed how we go about everything these days, I’m not sure how serving on a jury will look like now with social distancing protocols.
All I know is that I will watch and wait for the next correspondence from Ms. Miller and respond accordingly. I know that serving as a juror is the right thing to do even if they don’t offer free pens or address labels.
Heather Ziegler can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.