Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Junk mail

As is clear already from my fr(ECO)logue posts, junk mail is a frequent visitor at my home. I normally receive one or two pieces of mail each day that are bills or welcomed or solicited in some way by me. The rest--sometimes two or three times as many pieces--is trying to sell me something or solicit something from me.

This is not just my personal dilemma. As this list of statistics from the Native Forest Network show, the junk mail bounty is commonplace, and its effects spill out of our home and into the landfills.

Cutting back on junk mail is possible, by calling/mailing/emailing the perpetrators, and by getting off of mailing lists. It is a time-consuming prospect; on one of the first days of this project, I spent a couple of hours calling each of the senders of eight pieces of junk mail I got that day. But I am putting off the rest of the calls not because I don't relish the hours of phone calls in my future, but because I would like to give myself a month of relatively normal mail deluge to compare with what I hope will be the post-call mail dribble.

I'm holding off also inspired in part by a fellow compacter, who is weighing her entire mail pile week by week (or maybe month by month) to compare the decrease by weight. I won't be doing this, because I don't own a scale and don't want to acquire one, and because I'd like to move the stuff I don't need into the correct piles more quickly than that. But I should get a similar effect from counting the number of letters per day.

The above link (to the Native Forest Network) also gives a few ideas on how to stop junk mail, for those interested.

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