Power Shift   Leave a comment

He turned the key in the lock and opened the door. To his horror he saw the hall littered with junk-mail. Mervyn threw down his keys on the hall table and scooped up a heap of paper advertisements, and let them fall like a paper shower. Then he kicked them all aside with a sigh, and made his way to the kitchen. He took a bin-sack from under the sink, and then went back to the hall to gather up the unwelcome trash. Mervyn was just about to tip them with the rest of the junk-mail from previous occasions, into the recycling bin, when anger overcame him.
Why should I have to put up with this? Why should I be paying for all this to be recycled?
Then a plan began to formulate in his mind. He poured the paper from the hall onto the kitchen table, and then did the same with the contents of the recycling bin. Slowly he began to sift through the stack of papers hiding the kitchen table. Mervyn began to make separate piles on the floor. Once he got into the rhythm of it he started to gather momentum, and was soon feverishly scanning each individual piece of paper, then grading it to one of the mushrooming piles. Mervyn was totally absorbed, and now and again let out a maniacal laugh. Several hours later he sat back exhausted, but smiled a satisfied smile at his work.
After a welcoming cup of tea and a slice of toast, he went upstairs to the attic. Mervyn poked around in the attic until he found what he was looking for… a large roll of brown wrapping paper. Downstairs again, he started creating parcels of pamphlets, brochures and leaflets. Then he addressed each one carefully. But he only had one book of stamps in the house. He would have to get all the parcels to the post-office somehow. Then Mervyn remembered the abandoned trolley in the stream, which ran behind the row of houses that included his own. So swiftly was he out of the gate and back into his garden, that none of the neighbours saw him, to wonder what he was up to. Mervyn tossed the packages into the trolley and then leaving by the front door, made his way to the post-office.
This time the neighbours did see him, and gawped at him bemused. They could only guess what he was up to. At the small village post-office Mervyn and his trolley of parcels raised a few eyebrows, especially those of Mrs McTavish the post-mistress.
“Well Mr. Lancaster, what have you got there?”
“I’m literally returning to sender,” smirked Mervyn. “I need stamps for all of these.”
Each package was handed up to Mrs McTavish to be weighed and stamped. People were getting impatient in the queue, and some grumbled out loud. At last Mervyn was done and Mrs Mctavish announced the cost, after some deliberation. Mervyn was taken aback and gulped. He pulled out his wallet and paid up. Luckily he had enough money. He turned to leave, and reddened when he saw the disgruntled and curious faces behind him.
What have I done? Have I lost all sense?
Just then Mervyn felt a tap on his shoulder. Mervyn spun around in fright. He recognized a man he had seen in the queue. Mervyn looked at him quizzically. The man introduced himself as Sam Taylor, a local reporter. Mervyn took his hand in bafflement.
“What did you mean, you were returning those parcels to sender?” asked Sam.
“Do you live nearby?
Mervyn nodded his head.
“Well would it be alright if we went back to your place, and you explain it all to me?”
“Well, yes I suppose so.”
So they went back to Mervyn’s house and had tea and cheese sandwiches. It was such a relief for Mervyn to spill out all his pent-up frustration about the junk-mail to Sam. The resentment and anger that had been growing inside him for the last few months, poured from him as his walls of sanity came tumbling down in a deluge of emotion.
“I understand,” Sam said passing Mervyn a tissue. “So you thought you would play them at their own game?” Sam continued gently, urging Mervyn to go on and reveal all.
Mervyn looked at Sam and then told him what he had done. Sam started chuckling. Mervyn began to laugh hysterically.
“Have you got all the addresses where you sent the junk-mail to, Mervyn?”
“Yes, I wrote them down in a list as I went along.”
“Well I’m going to use some of my contacts in the press, to send along a few reporters and photographers to be there when they open some of your parcels. Mervyn you’re going to make the national news, and get compensated for your stamps and more. The public will identify with your misery, and you are going to be the people’s champion!”
“Am I?” Mervyn looked up like a lamb before slaughter.

Posted September 9, 2014 by eileenmoynihan in Uncategorized

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