The Secret Life of Mailers

Motherhood has afforded me all sorts of revelations, and the one I have to share today is nothing short of astounding. Prepare yourself.


You know those mailers you get in the mail from time to time, advertising credit cards or sales at clothing stores? I finally found out what they’re for. They’re not really marketing tools to persuade you to open a new account or buy a pair of jeans. Really they’re destined for something much more honorable: They’re for babies to lovingly and carefully play with as if they were the greatest toys on earth.


We’ve established that Jacob has little to no respect for the physical integrity of his books.




Spines mean nothing to him (despite how much they mean to me) and dust jackets are no better (does he understand how much work goes into them?!).


We don’t have a ton of room—and we do have a ton of books—so I stow the more precious books as far away from Jacob’s reach as I can, while keeping them accessible to, you know, read them.


Despite my best efforts, our autographed Laurie Halse Anderson picture book has had its dust jacket stripped at every opportunity. And the copy of Make Way for Ducklings one of my best friends gave us at my baby shower? That jacket, to my great horror, is considerably torn.


But the Chase mailer we received at least two months ago, while bent, is in otherwise pristine condition. Some days Jacob carries that thing all over the place, the way other kids carry a doll or a teddy bear. He seems to have no desire to rip, chew, or otherwise demolish it. Every night when I clean up his toys, I put it back on the shelf, knowing there’s a chance he’ll play with it the next day, and it will make him happy.


One great mystery debunked, another left perhaps forever unsolved.

One Comment to “The Secret Life of Mailers”

  1. this is so true!!!! Never before have I appreciated junk mail the way that I do now. Kids…they literally change everything.

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