Thursday, April 28, 2005

Letter to the PNWMPS membership 

This past Christmas, Paul and I gave several gifts of membership in the newly formed Pacific Northwest Monthly Preserves Society. We had high hopes for the PNWMPS; we believed the products to be delicious, and all those who had sampled the preserves had enjoyed them. We had thought that, were our family members happy with their gifts, we might give additional memberships as gifts next year.

Sadly, the PNWMPS has so far failed in its mission of providing Pacific Northwest Preserves on a regular basis to those not fortunate enough to live here. The Society has not lived up to its name, nor to the promises made to its members. We have recently acquired, from someone high-up in the PNWMPS, a copy of the letter that the society will mail to its membership tomorrow:

Dear [member's name here]:

The Pacific Northwest Monthly Preserves Society regrets to officially inform you of something of which we are sure you are already aware: We have been remiss.

When we welcomed you into Membership in the Society (indicating, as we then noted, that you are a person of discrimination and fine taste), we made you this promise: "As a Member, you may expect deliveries of preserves from the Pacific Northwest to arrive every two months, on average, during the coming year."

As you received your Initial Membership Package at the end of December, and you are (as are all of our Members) a person not only of discrimination and fine taste but also of exceptional mathematical and calendaring abilities, you might well have expected your next shipment of delectable Pacific Northwest Preserves to have arrived on your doorstep at the end of February.

When said expected shipment did not arrive, we are sure that you will have consulted the letter accompanying your Initial Membership Package. As you (as are all of our Members) are a person not only of discrimination and fine taste, and of exceptional mathematical and calendaring abilities, but also of the highest reading comprehension skills, you will perhaps have noticed the qualifier "on average" in the statement regarding future shipments. You might then have been slightly mollified, if anxious for the much-anticipated arrival of your preserves.

When the end of March arrived, and no fine Pacific Northwest Preserves had yet arrived on your doorstep, we would venture that you were, perhaps, somewhat disappointed. As you are a person not only of discrimination and fine taste (as are all of our Members), [yada yada blah blah blah blather fawn], but also of great emotional strength and compassion, we imagine that you might have decided, out of the goodness of your very good heart, to be generous in your interpretation of our promised shipping schedule.

It is now the end of April. It has been four months since you received your Initial Membership Package, and you have yet to receive your next shipment of our truly delectable Pacific Northwest Preserves. We can only imagine that, as you are a person of discrimination and fine taste, you are by now craving our fine preserves, are despairing of ever receiving any further shipment from the PNWMPS, and are therefore (justifiably, I might add) pissed.

Dear [member's name here], please accept our most sincere apologies for any distress caused by the unfortunate difficulties in our fulfillment department. You will receive, within the week, three jars of our fine product from the Pacific Northwest: Peach Preserves with Orange Liqueur, Seville Orange Marmalade and Cranberry Cherry Almond Conserve. We hope that these preserves will prove to have been worth the wait. We will endeavor to improve our scheduling and shipping procedures so that this lapse does not occur again.

Very sincerely,
The Pacific Northwest Monthly Quarterly Occasional Preserves Society

p.s. Although we recognize that this extended period without benefit of fine Pacific Northwest Preserves may have created in our esteemed members an understandably intense desire for our product, we again ask that you remain mindful of the PNWMPS Helpful Suggestion: Though upon opening you may be tempted to do so, please do not consume the entire contents at one sitting. Though exquisite, these preserves are best consumed across a decent interval, and shared with friends and family. New Members who have ignored this Helpful Suggestion have reported short periods of bliss, followed by longer periods of gastric distress. By offering this Helpful Suggestion, we hope to prevent such unfortunate occurrences. We thank you for your attention to this matter.

p.p.s. Due to the same inattention to organizational detail that resulted in the unfortunate lapse in our shipping schedule, the upgrading of our Seattle production facilities has not yet occurred. We are attempting to schedule this upgrade, taking into account the question of whether peak (summer) season production might occur offsite. You are always welcome to visit our facilities. If you choose to do so during peak season, you may be able to participate in not only the User Recipe Testing that has made our facilities tours a "must" for members visiting Our Fair City, but in the very production process itself. This is an opportunity that is made available to only a very select few. If you are interested, please contact us immediately to schedule a visit.

Yes, of course, the PNWMQOPS is really me and Paul. And it's a good thing I still have a day job.