May 19, 2010 by Kat Richter
The results are in. (If you’re just tuning in, we’ve had a little contest here at “Before I Quit My Day Job” in which readers were asked to provide an appropriate or creatively inappropriate response to the question “May I have your zip code?”)
After sorting through the excuses (“Teacher, my dogs ate my homework…seriously they woke me up by flipping my shoe back and forth to each other and that seriously deterred me from completing my assignment, can I have an extension?”), the conspiracy theories (“I am glad u explained why they—The Man— want zip codes. Radio Shack asks too, even if you’re just getting batteries. I feel like James Bond when I give them a fake one— well not a fake one, just not mine”) and the tales of woe from readers abroad (What happens to those people who don’t have zip codes? If I was in your shop, would you be unable to sell me anything? My parents lived in Seattle for a bit, and my Dad had an alien card. He’s actually still got it, and it shows him, twenty years ago, with ALIEN written on the card. Apparently a number of people really did think that meant he was from outer space”), I have finally selected a winner.
Second Runner Up is Jill, who replied “0-2-1-3-4.” I didn’t get it at first but after consulting with my Advisory Board of Intergenerational Affairs (which consists of my mom and Google) it turns out that Jill was referring to the hit TV show Zoom. Well done, Jill!
First Runner Up is Ellen, who didn’t quite answer the question but she lives in England and doesn’t have a zip code, so it’s not her fault (and here at the Kat Richter Institute of Distance Learning for Problem Customers, we pride ourselves on being sensitive to the unique circumstances of each student). Instead, she relayed the following story from her work at an English bookshop. “I had a customer a few weeks back who came in looking for a particular Mark Twain novel which we didn’t have in stock. I offered to order it for her and told her which other branches of the company might have it in stock. She then asked me ‘Has Mark Twain written anything new?’ I politely pointed out he’d been dead for about 100 years, and promptly went off to laugh about her with my colleagues.” Ellen said she hoped this story would make me feel better about the idiots who come into my shop. It did. Very much so. Thank you, Ellen.
Finally, without further ado, First Prize goes to Charles who wrote, “You don’t need no code for my zipper, Sweets, it’s always open! Ah yeaaah!” [high fives friend]. Congratulations, Charles. You have successfully scandalized the Institute and shall henceforth be known as King of the Zip Codes (and since I promised a shout out to the winner, you can view Charles’s choreography here: http://www.youtube.com/GUSHUEDANCE ).
One last word on the subject of zip codes—I apologize to the reader otherwise known as “Dashing Darcy.” Darcy, I loved your reply (“My zip code? Oh fairest of the fair, so beautiful in spite of your uniform polo, ask not what my zip code is. Give me rather yours, or best yet, your telephone number, because my Thursday evenings are as free as yours”) but I suspect that you’re not actually Fitzwilliam Darcy, and as such, I have had to disqualify you. I know for a fact that the real Darcy is too busy swimming around in his underwear (very nice underwear, mind you—I saw it at the Jane Austen Museum in Bath) to read my blog.