How I solved my delivery problems

Two years ago this month I bought my wife a physical subscription to The New York Times, the kind where they throw the paper down your driveway. She loves reading it the old-fashioned way, with ink on paper. Me too. It’s better than online. You walk down your driveway every morning. the Times rattle when you unfold it. It clicks again when you turn the page to read the next article. It’s ready when you need to read where you left off.

Before that, she sometimes bought one while shopping, at Damark’s Market Deli or the East Hampton IGA. But it was usually just once or twice a week. It was Valentine’s Day 2020. It was a great present.

Things went well for a while. But then, all of a sudden, in October 2021, it stopped. He wasn’t there for two days, then a week, then a week and a half.

The New York Times puts you on hold to transfer you to “delivery”. The music they play is jazz – Gerry Mulligan, I think. Very cool.

And then you talk to someone. No delivery yesterday? We will credit you for that day. Oh, a week? I can credit you paperless for up to a week. What is your address? Twenty-seven Three Mile Harbor Hog Creek Road in East Hampton? Call us back tomorrow and let us know if it’s better. Happy to help you.

But there was no paper the next day, nor the day after. I have more credits. But there was still no paper.

Learned a lot about how they handled delivery issues. They really want you to call back every day to report a non-delivery. I mentioned that I love Gerry Mulligan, but being on hold for 20 minutes a day was an ordeal. They said the more you call, the sooner we’ll investigate this.

“We have about 32,000 distributors,” an agent said on a call. “It’s not easy to do.”

I asked for our delivery man’s number.

They said no.

I then told this agent that I had founded Dan’s papers in 1960 and has always taken delivery seriously to resolve any issues.

It didn’t go anywhere.

It went on and on and on. Months have passed. They could give me more credit. Did I want to cancel my subscription? No?

This continued through the end of 2021 and into the winter of 2022. Worse still was the fact that no credit was deducted from my Amex account. It was $84 a month. They kept billing me as if I had the paper.

An agent spent half an hour investigating it. He found out that my wife had ordered a free crossword puzzle from Apple and Apple was now overseeing the billing. When I told my wife she would have to cancel this for the credits to go from Times, she took it pretty well. But I still haven’t seen any credits.

My calls were now an exaggerated moan. I paid $600 for The New York Times so that you do not deliver my paper. And we pay more when we buy it at the store anyway. Do something! They did nothing.

Then something happening in East Hampton gave me an idea. East Hampton Town owns East Hampton Airport and wants to make it less noisy so on May 17th they will close the airport for two days and then reopen it with the city still owning it but now it will have a level designation quieter noise. .

I’m going to cancel our subscription for four days, I told my wife, then take a new one four days later but in your name instead of mine. Maybe they’ll deliver it to the right place.

Good luck with that, she said.

I called the Times and in two minutes an agent talked me out of it. If you do this, he says, you will lose all the credits we put in your account. No, we don’t refund money for nondelivery. We credit your term account. Future deliveries will be free until credits are exhausted. How about giving yourself another month of credits and letting me fix it?

So I accepted that. One month free! For a newspaper I paid for but haven’t seen in five months. I was amazed that I did that. And that didn’t work either.

Now we come to the grand finale of this story. A week ago we were four miles out in the northwest woods to meet up with friends for a walk on the beach. On the way, we crossed a road with a sign indicating Three Mile Harbor Drive. We took a detour. Number 27 was an estate with an iron gate. A dozen copies of a newspaper were strewn across the lawn just inside. The paperboys had thrown them over the gate and onto the lawn.

I was convinced it was our journals, but my wife wasn’t so sure. She stopped me from opening the door to swipe a paper to see if it was The New York Times. You’ll be in trouble, she said. They could also subscribe to a newspaper. We continued.

Later I found the owner’s name, address and phone number. Don’t ask how I did that.

We try to get The New York Times to stop, they told me. We go out about once every weekend. We don’t read it and we don’t want it. We’re not getting anywhere either.

So here’s what happened. On a rainy Sunday, three days later, we drove in, opened the door (they had given us permission) and removed the blue plastic bag containing a 6-pound Sunday New York Times and drove home we.

Sliding the paper out of the plastic, a white envelope fell to the floor. On the front was printed the following: “Happy Valentine’s Day. Your delivery man, Anthony. And there was his phone number. He hoped to get a tip.

We called the number, he identified himself and the next day he delivered The New York Times down our driveway, and he’s been doing it ever since. On that first day, he also delivered the New York Post, press day and The Wall Street Journal just to be nice.

Problem solved.

About Julie Gray

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