Open Letter To Company

I am not a very good at many things.

I am not stealthy. I can trip, stumble and fall for no reason at all, and it’s not usually just a small landing. I am able to make a lot of noise along with gymnastics that rival Gold Medal contenders as I move from upright to prone.

I can not keep a secret. (You may have already figured this out from my daily rantings on this site) Phrases just pop out of me at random, this has happened all my life.

I get surprised easily. Once startled, I get flustered and it causes more trouble than if I could have just kept a cool head. I believe this comes from having four older brothers and the constant need to defend myself against boys that had to be reminded that I was their sister and not just the new dishwasher.

Anyway, even though I should be ready for surprises, I seem to be oblivious until BAM! Then I don’t always respond well, i.e. over-respond, which may leave bystanders in awe that such loud noises and movements can come out of me.

Now that you know all the back-story, I now have to write a letter to a local company to explain my actions.

Dear PapÈ Machinery,

My family has been doing business with your company for more years than I have been alive. Before you bought this John Deere Dealership from Fisher Implements, my father purchased his tractors and all his repair items from this business.

Similarly, in the years since you have owned this company, we have purchased tractors, Gators and many parts for our repairs here on the farm. I would like to note that your facility is very friendly and I enjoy roaming around the showroom that you have loaded with so many useful items to entice me as I wander through.

Last month, as we were in the middle of a major tear-down and rebuild of our 450C John Deere Bulldozer, we had made several to many trips into your business for needed parts. I should say, Mike made the trips to town. (this statement is important because it explains my role in this).

Nearing the end of the major repair, another trip to PapÈ was needed to complete the fix. I was scheduled to be in the nearby town so I was asked to go pick up parts. It was no big deal, I have done this very thing many times over my lifetime. Before I left home on this day, I was told that the part would be needed back at the farm by afternoon and that I would have plenty of time for my own plans in the morning.

Mike had called about 9am saying he checked and that the part was in at your business. He then called me again at 11am and said that he and the mobile repairman were ready to install the needed part and that I needed to get to Hillsboro right away then head back home as quickly as possible.

When I got to your business, I parked right near the door (something that NEVER happens), and entered your business. Your large showroom was daunting with all the new equipment on display and I was happy to see a guy come up to the parts counter quickly. I stated my name and he went into the bowels of the backroom and came back with a bag, I mean a small bag, it was smaller than a sandwich bag. Inside it had a thin, black, rubber gasket. The whole thing could not have weighed more than an ounce or two.

I asked if that was all there was and the guy, after checking his computer, stated that yes it was. That was the part, the whole part, nothing but the part. I was startled, mumbled a thank you and headed out the door.

When I got outside to my car, I called Mike to find out if I had indeed gotten the part he needed before I left town. Of course, there was no answer because his phone was in the house and he was out working on the Cat. I have never before been sent all the way to Hillsboro for such a small part and was quite surprised.

Since I did not get an answer on the phone, I drove straight home, the minute I was in the driveway, Mike grabbed that part to install it. The part was exactly what he ordered and what he had needed before he could lever the engine back into the bulldozer.

A week goes by, and the farm gets a letter from PapÈ Machinery. Mike said that the company goofed and sent us a bill for the part I had picked up. I wondered why your company would send a bill, hadn’t Mike already paid for the part when he ordered it? Mike said that I was supposed to pay for the part when I picked it up.

Apparently, I was supposed to leave the parts counter and go over to the ‘cage’ to pay for the part that I had so abruptly shoplifted from your business. In my startled state I was in such a hurry to make a phone call that did not connect, I failed to walk back into your business to pay.

You will find the check attached to this letter for $4.83.


Susan Schmidlin

A paper invoice mailed from machinery company.I did not realize that I had shoplifted until a week after the incident.

Well that is embarrassing, but at least I did not fall down!


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