Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Trolled By The Local Fitness Club

I had been expecting my state tax refund for about a month now. Naturally, when I found a brown envelope in my mail last week with Pay to the order of Thomas Mac visible in the envelope window, I was ecstatic. I had been expecting a refund of about $200 and had been making definite plans on spending the money in a way that would stimulate the economy and add to my wardrobe. Seeing as it had been shaping up to be a busy week, I placed the envelope on the mantle with the intentions of depositing it in the bank later.

I finally got around to making the deposit on Friday. With the envelope in hand, I drove to the bank. I didn't have any deposit slips on me, so I would have to go in rather than use the drive up window. I took the check out of the envelope to sign it. Attached to it was a flyer advertising Zumba classes and Pilates classes at the local gym. I thought of how desperate the state must be to allow such advertising to go along with their tax returns. I detached the check from the flyer and looked for a place to sign it on the back. This was my first indication that something was amiss. An endorsement line had not been provided. I turned the check over and discovered that it was written in the amount of $331 which was quite a bit more than I had been expecting. Further investigation indicated that what I had in my hands was a coupon for a membership to my local gym cleverly disguised as a fake check.

If that didn't make me feel idiotic enough, surfing through the pile of junk mail that I had in a pile near my shredder did. I checked with the state Comptroller's office which informed me that I should have gotten the check about three weeks ago. I didn't recall seeing it, but figured I would check my junk mail pile just in case. Sure enough, in the pile was a plain white envelope with blue printing. This was my state tax refund. I had almost shredded it as junk mail.

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