You’ve come to expect the mail every day. Okay, maybe there are a few schedule anomalies: days when you get more than one delivery, or a regular delivery and then a surprise repeat visit shortly thereafter because there was an extra package, or the mail doesn’t arrive at all because the system is taking a break. But generally, there’s a schedule with some measure of predictability.

Except sometimes you know the mail is supposed to be delivered — maybe you got a special notification, or maybe the mail didn’t arrive yesterday and so you know it’s for sure on its way with more volume than usual, whether that’s a bunch of useless flyers or a big old heavy padded envelope — and yet nothing shows up, and you’re like, what the fuck? You can see the truck out there on the street, so what’s the problem? I mean it’s not like your entire life is on hold while you wait to see if the mail is going to arrive, necessarily, but it sure would be nice to get back on track. You don’t want postal entropy, because who knows where that leads? Discomfort with the quality of service, to be sure, but also lingering questions about the carrying capacity of one mailbox, and perhaps concern over unexpected future deliveries.

“I’ll be there in a minute!” the guy says from the truck, offering a cheery wave, but he doesn’t budge. Or maybe he slips, like, a single leaflet in your direction, but you know damn good and well you’ve got more than some flimsy circular addressed to “Occupant.”

Basically, what you want is an easier route from point A to point B. Something to expedite the process from truck to mailbox because who knows what’s causing the delay but clearly this entire situation needs to aim towards maximum productivity with minimum wasted effort. Deliveries should arrive in a streamlined, orderly manner, by God, and NONE of us should have to wait by the window for half the morning while some misguided resource reroutes a package for tomorrow at 7 PM. (Anything later than immediately after a 3 PM caffeine break is a hostile act and will be received with great reluctance.)

And this, my friends, is why I heartily and sincerely recommend the Squatty Potty.

I’m almost out of conditioner so I went to the store specifically to buy that very thing, but when I got in the hair product aisle there was a couple standing exactly where I needed to be, just sort of browsing the selections while talking amongst themselves, and I tried sidling in next to them but their physical proximity made me anxious, like it seemed weird that they were there first and having their conversation about hair stuff or whatever and I was, like, barging in, totally merging our respective personal space bubbles in an uncool way, and so I reviewed my options: 1) Keep going and come back later when they’re gone, but won’t that look odd, like I was clearly wanting to get something and then at the last second veered away all awkward-like, and what if that prompts them to make faces at each other as soon as my back is turned, like a shared The heck was THAT all about? expression, or 2) Just grab something quickly and decisively as though I had super important things to be doing and hadn’t in fact been looking forward to spending a non-trivial portion of my morning gazing at a shelf of snake-oil promises while basking in words like luscious and nutrient rich, UGH FINE LET’S GO WITH DOOR #2, and so I lunged blindly at a random bottle which wasn’t even a brand I liked AND it turned out to be shampoo, and while at that point the obvious thing to do was to return it to the shelf — perhaps with a slight shake of the head, a tiny half-smile so as to properly convey an airy Silly me, I almost bought the wrong thing! vibe — and get the product I actually wanted, what I did was throw it in my cart and walk briskly to the checkout line because at that point accepting a financial punishment for my ridiculous course of (in)action seemed entirely appropriate and seriously everything else just seemed WAY too hard.

Social anxiety reminds me of the thing Meryl Streep said about fretting about your weight: “There is no more mind-numbing, boring, idiotic, self-destructive diversion from the fun of living.” Well, yeah. And yet here I am with this unwanted bottle of macadamia nut shampoo.

But I guess that’s the thing, it’s all in how you look at it. Do I spend my life hating myself for being so self-conscious all the time and thus growing ever more self-conscious? Do I forcefully Stuart Smalley myself into some attempt to change the way I react and behave in certain situations? Or maybe, just maybe, is it okay to just … accept all my borked-up thinking with some measure of kindness, and be okay with the fact that sometimes I straight-up forget how to human? Because I can either have my dumb hair product flail and turn it into yet another reason I’m a waste of food, or I can laugh about it afterwards and be grateful for my authentic, sorta-disordered self — and also for free 2-day shipping.

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