I have to say, even though the post office and its workers take a lot of ribbing and flack, wrong deliveries don’t happen all that often. Once upon a time I did have a postal worker who was rather careless looking at addresses, but it did give me a chance to meet most of my neighbors – including the one who regularly ordered new knives.
These 15 people, though, have some really funny (and definitely odd) stories of strange things that have shown up in the mail – things they didn’t order, and I assume didn’t keep.
15. This sounds like the beginning of a true crime show.
I received four packages from Amazon in the space of about a year. Twice I got fancy dresses for an 18 inch doll. One red and one a wedding dress. I don’t have a doll. Amazon did not charge me for them, but would not tell me who sent them.
Then I got a weird hook thing to hang a shower head from. Same story.. I told them it was creepy, and I kind of felt threatened getting weird gifts from strangers… there was yelling involved by gift three.
Then I got an expensive “my pillow” style pillow. They listed it at like 50 USD at the time. I called again. No Ms Tanner, we are not charging you, someone else paid. Yes they sent it to your address on purpose.
I lost my mind and told the Amazon Lady the next thing I got that I did not order, I was calling the police and a lawyer. I felt stalked and harrassed and they were at fault because they wouldn’t tell me who did it. I know it sounds silly, but I really was kind of scared.
I threw a screaming cursing fit and she finally swore she would make sure it never happened again. It has been about three years and it hasn’t so I guess either freaky gifter got bored or Amazon Lady put a note on my account.
14. That took some restraint right there!
For me, it was a large FedEx package I came home to one night after work.
It was wet sitting in a puddle, so I dragged it in and let the box fall apart on the way in. Quickly I noticed it was a Christmas gift in wrapping paper. Instead of waiting for the big day, and letting it sit drenched, I started unwrapping it only to find the content wrapped round-and-round in plastic wrap. So I kept at it, unwinding and unwinding creating a massive ball of plastic and finally a view to what was inside… dried vines that looked like potpourri with a nice fruity fragrance.
What was this? I figured something with bugs inside, kept in by all that plastic. So I decided to look at who shipped it to me, to then realize it was NOT FOR ME! I lived on S St and this was for my street number, but on F St. I guess the delivery person decided that F and S are easily confused and left the box for me since my street number doesn’t exist on F St. Well, this all spooked me and with the fear of bugs in the wrap I decided to put the whole heap into a big plastic trash bag and tie it tight.
Due to trash pickup not being for a few days, I left the bag in my apartment near the door. Within a day I opened the door to a big guy “selling candy” and very interested in looking right past me and scanning my unit. With Christmas nearby I simply said no thanks, I have candy galore and closed the door on him. I knew that was odd, and honestly a little frightening.
A day or two later a friend came for a visit and I decided to ask him what he thought my garbage really was. He intriguingly looked inside and quickly exclaimed, “That’s a shitload of pot!”
Turns out it was about 10lbs of the high-grade marijuana, and my friend wanted to break into the “brick”. I didn’t allow it and instead called the police. They wanted me to bring it in, but I thought that was a bit scary to do, so I asked them to come to me. Their response was “we can’t come until tomorrow”, to which I though who cares I’ve had this for days already. They agreed to let it sit with me for the night but said, “don’t smoke any of it!”
The next morning a crew of investigators and officers arrived determining it was from Hawaii (the return address said it was from California, btw) and had a street value of over $40,000. They took it away and luckily nothing more ever came from this. I at least have the story…
13. I think we all know what she did with it.
Back in 2011, I got a package from Amazon that had a container of Pre-Seed Fertility Friendly Lubricant. This is lube that “mimics fertile cervical fluids to support sperm on their journey. Unlike most other lubricants, Pre-Seed™ Fertility-Friendly Lubricant is pH-balanced and isotonic, so sperm can swim freely.”
Naturally, I did not order this. Trying to get pregnant was the last thing on either my or Sabrina’s minds. Even though I was ostensibly-male then, Sabrina was still on blood thinners, and pregnancy could have been life-threatening for her. Even if we’d wanted to conceive a child, which we didn’t. What’s more, the order number that appeared on the packing slip did not appear in my Amazon order history, and neither my bank account or credit card had been charged for it.
I called up Amazon customer service and explained the problem. They assured me that I had not been charged for it, and the person who did get charged for it would get a message saying “your order has been delayed” while they re-shipped it. However, they could not accept returns on that particular item, so I was free to dispose of it in any manner I saw fit. So I sent it to my friend Lexxi in Illinois, at her request. She never told me what she did with it.
12. At least she learned a valuable lesson in the process.
I was working from home one day, when there was a knock at the door. I opened it, and immediately saw a huge delivery van in my drive, and two guys carrying furniture. The guy at my door just walked in. I grabbed the door, blocked his path, and said “Excuse me, who are you?”
Again he said nothing, but gestured to the load he was carrying. So I said “What is this?”. He got huffy and said “Where do you want it?” I said I didn’t order it. He got even more huffy.
He pulled out some paperwork and thrust it at me. I saw the address was not my address, and the name on the order was not mine. I pointed this out. He got really annoyed then, and the two stormed out back to their van, and carelessly threw the furniture back in. As loudly as possible, they slammed doors, and screeched out of my driveway.
Yeah….not gonna use that furniture company for delivery either.
Seriously, mistakes are mistakes. We all make them. There’s no need to be rude or careless about it.
11. That was definitely awkward.
I had recently married my wife, a beautiful Latina born in El Salvador, and she joined me in my home that I had moved into several months earlier. One afternoon she grabbed the mail from the mailbox and when she got back inside the house she looked both very upset and sad, it looked like she was ready to kill me and it looked like she was ready to cry. I was confused, what did I do now?
I mean, I am not perfect and on occasion I would do something that she didn’t approve, however it was never something serious and we discussed it and moved on. This time it didn’t look like she wanted to talk about it or get over it, to say that she was upset was an understatement. What did I do now?
After gathering up some courage to ask he what I did this time, she said that she would tell me her hurt and disappointment and she showed me a magazine that had pictures of beautiful Latina women on the cover! What is this magazine? A certain genre of porn magazine? No…
The magazine was a catalog of Latina women looking for a partner…
It was a Mail Order Bride catalog of Latina women from Mexico, Central and South America!
This is not funny and it made me look desperate and as I was married, it looked like I was still looking for another woman. Actually I couldn’t blame her for being upset and disappointed. Fortunately the magazine was addressed to the former occupant of the house and I was absolved of any wrong-doing! As a male married to a woman it could have been worse, it could have been a gay porn or a weird sexual deviant magazine.
10. With friends like these…
The items I received weren’t strange to me but certainly may be to others. Several years ago, I once received a large box from a mail order hosiery company. It was addressed to me but I had not ordered anything from that company.
I hesitated opening the box because I didn’t want to have to pay for what was inside. The invoice was inside the box so I finally had to open it. I called the company and told them I had not placed an order and asked if it had been placed on-line. They advised me they would get back to me within a day or two.
The next day they called to say they had received a computer printed letter requesting an order for 120 pair of pantyhose in different shades and all in the same size. They said the signature was basically a squiggly line. I told them I had not placed the order and would place the box in the mail the next day. They advised that the Post Office would not deliver it to them but return it to me/refuse the package because it had been opened.
I then told the company that if they sent me a return label I would send the box of pantyhose back. I was told to wait for them to get back to me. The next day they called and said that when they totaled postage both ways as well as the cost of the pantyhose it wasn’t worth it to them to pay for them to be returned. They said I could keep them. The size was my correct size so I lucked out in that I could get use out of them.
I didn’t mention receiving the package to anyone and then one day months later a friend of mine who can be a real jerk says “Hey did you happen to get over a hundred pairs of pantyhose in the mail?” I looked at him and said “You dumb ass! I thought I was going to have to pay for them!” By now he is laughing hard and asks “Did you have to pay for them?” I told him that the company told me to keep them. He replied “Really? You still have them?” I told him I did and then he says “Cool, let’s rip them up.” I told him he had a screw loose. He hated that I like to wear pantyhose and wanted to be an ass about it.
9. Okay once is a mistake, but TWICE?
This happened to me twice, at two different houses. If you are squeamish, go onto something else.
The first time a “package” was left outside my front door. That house had a security company that kept an eye on things, so I called them. They determined that it was a mixture of ground dog meat mixed with kerosene.
Some months later, I was living at a different location, and found a similar package outside my gate. I suppose if they put forth a bit more effort it would have also been outside my front door.
I called the police. That was about 2 am. They showed up around 9 am. The police were very helpful and suggested if it happened again, to call them while the person leaving the package was still there. As if a 7 hour response time would have any likelihood of the police arriving when the perp was still around.
Needless to say I didn’t order that, whatever it actually was. I might have guessed the kerosene part, but not the type of meat. I guess the security guard had some past experience, or maybe he was just making up a nice story. But it was some kind of ground meat mixed with some petroleum based substance.
8. When fortune smiles upon your very specific interests.
For me, it was a book. Amazon delivered it, I can’t remember where in our condo complex. It was addressed to someone who does not live in our complex. A resident brought the package to me because I’m the secretary of the condo board of directors, and keep the record of our residents. I posted notices on our bulletin boards in case the addressee might be a guest of one of our residents and claim it. When no one did, I called Amazon to tell them I would return it to them. To my surprise, they said to just keep it. (At that point, I didn’t yet know it was a book, just that it was from Amazon.)
I opened the package to find a book on the rather esoteric topic of the Crusaders. As a traveler, I had visited Crusader sites in various places in Europe, Israel, and Jordan, but never learned much about them except for the architecture. I began reading the book and became quickly engrossed. No wonder guides never talk about more than architecture! The story was incredibly gruesome, but written in a mesmerizing style.
I looked up the author, Jay Rubenstein, online, and found out he was a professor at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and an acknowledged world authority on the Crusades. He has given guest lectures on them around the country. It so happened that I had a trip scheduled to Tennessee a few weeks later, including Knoxville. I called the university and asked if I could meet Dr. Rubenstein. They said sure, provided he was in town during my visit.
He was, and graciously spent maybe half an hour with me. Knowing that I was from Los Angeles, he mentioned that he would be lecturing at Cal Tech in Pasadena about a week later. My visit to Tennessee was on its tail end. By the time of his visit, I would be home – about 15 minutes from Pasadena. Jay Rubenstein invited me to the lecture. I attended.
I haven’t been to any Crusader sites since then, but if I ever visit any, I will never view them in the same light as if I hadn’t gotten Amazon’s mis-delivery. In fact, I can look at pictures of my past visits, and will never view them in the same light as if I hadn’t gotten Amazon’s mis-delivery.
7. You gotta love small towns.
This is an interesting question. We live in a small hamlet in the mountains where everyone knows everyone. There have been several times when we’ve come home to find Strange Things had been left. Once we found some turkeys in our freezer. The fire department had ordered too many for an auction they had and needed a place to store them. So they let themselves in and put them in our freezer.
Another time we came home to find a video game on our front porch. Our neighbor has a business that distributes pinball machines, video games, vending machines, etc. One of our sons was graduating that year and he brought it over for us to use for free. There were mornings when we would find people on the front porch playing the game. They were friends and felt comfortable just stopping and playing on their way by.
Then there was the time we found a motorcycle in our garage. Our neighbor worked at a place that repaired cars and motorcycles. He knew that if he kept the motorcycle on the lot, one of his workers would want to buy it, and the worker couldn’t afford it. So he brought it home, parked it in our garage, and it was there until it was sold.
Now we say that we lock our doors, not for what people will take, but for what they will leave. I love living here.
6. Never watch infomercials under the influence.
My sophomore year of college I came back from a fairly basic college party one night, not extraordinarily late, and fell asleep alone watching TV.
A week or two later I received an irate phone call informing me that there was an absolutely humongous package waiting for me in the mail room. I was told to remove it immediately. And to probably bring someone to assist me because it was unlikely I would be able to remove the item alone.
I thought.. “ I am not expecting any mail: this has to be a mistake. Also, how big can a mailroom package possibly be? This sounds like an exaggeration.”
Every single thing about that group of thoughts and thought process and reaction turned out to be wrong.
At the mailroom there was a package waiting that was only about a foot shorter than I am, leaning against a wall. I’m 5’6. It was much too heavy for me to carry.
The monstrosity had my name on it.
It took me and two other people and a “dolly” to get the thing to my room.
It was a total mystery. I had made no recent purchases, the return address was vague.
I got it home and opened it. I was very, very interested to see what was in there. The cardboard of the box was thick. It took a knife. It felt more like something you’d construct a building from than ship something in. And the contents? I mean — it clanked when we moved it all up the stairs. It sounded and kind of weighed like metal.
And it was!
It turned out that the strangest thing delivered to me that I didn’t order was actually the strangest thing delivered to me that I didn’t REMEMBER ordering.
At some point I guess I ordered “The Gazelle” by Tony Little from an infomercial that I vaguely remembered watching as I drifted off to sleep. Even though my college had state of the art gym facilities and I had a roommate arriving in a week.
Don’t watch infomercials half asleep. I guess they can be persuasive while you’re fully alert but I’m convinced based on this experience they have the potential to be hypnotic while you’re not.
I sold that thing for most of what it was worth to someone local and had to pay the rest off. When someone asks about wild and crazy things I did in college to be honest this stands out more uniquely than any Mardis Gras.
5. This is so cringe-y.
One day I was sitting inside my house when my dad brought a package to me. I didn’t recall ordering anything, so I was a bit confused. I opened it up and inside was a bike lock. I have a bike, but I never ordered a bike lock. There was no note or anything either and it was addressed to me!
I just shrugged it off as a random package. A couple days later, I received another package. Once again, I didn’t order anything, so I had no clue what it was. I opened it and inside was a bottle of female sex enhancer pills! I was shocked!
I told my parents about it and they were concerned. They thought there was a creep sending me inappropriate packages. My mom called Amazon and here is what really happened. A few weeks before the packages got to my house, I was taking voice acting lessons with a voice coach. He had a friend who said he would send me a microphone because I didn’t have one at the time.
What he didn’t realize was, that he accidentally put my address for all other packages he had ordered. So, those kinky packages were for him and his wife! Definitely an interesting story which I won’t forget!
4. Reasons to never join a cult, 101.
Fifty years ago, I was in Scientology, but I quit them in the 70s. A few yeas ago a bunch of boxes appeared at my front door from FedEx or UPS. They just dropped them off. I didn’t sign for them. There were over a hundred pounds of boxes.
I called the delivery company and told them I hadn’t ordered anything. I was very freaked out. Was I going to be billed tons of money for something I didn’t order?
The next day more came. They all came from an address I recognized in California, a Scientology org. It turned out to be books and CDs
I didn’t want anything to do with Scientology ever again and I certainly didn’t want their books and crap, so I made them all be shipped back. at their cost.
They sent me a whole shit load of letters and I don’t know how many phone calls. I was polite at first but that didn’t help at all, so I became as rude as I could imagine because their mindset is never give up no matter what. My wife was shocked that I would use such language over the phone. I wasn’t talking that way because I was angry. I was trying to make it sink in that I wanted them to no longer call me, write me, or ship me stuff I didn’t want.
Of course it didn’t work. But tossing away anything from them, and never answering their calls ever again worked eventually after a long time.
3. It’s really too bad they didn’t fit.
Quite a few years ago a package came to my door. I had not ordered anything so I was a little puzzled. The package had my name and address on it. So I opened it and there was 2 bras in it. I
called the company to try to find out what was going on and they checked into it. They said they had no record of it. I asked how I could send them back and was told that they couldn’t accept them, since they had no record of it. They said they were mine to keep.
All well and good except that I at that time wasn’t as heavy as I became later on. I’ve never been big boobied. These bras were a 44 double d. Even at my heaviest I never got that big on top. Still can’t figure out how they came to me.
2. This is a literal nightmare.
A friend of mine worked at an upscale greenhouse/landscaping company in Louisville, Kentucky in the late 1980s. She relayed this story to me soon after it happened.
“I received a call one day from an older woman about the tree delivered to her house, a tree she didn’t order. Two men said the tree was shipped to this address and they came inside and set the tree up in her living room. She wanted someone to come and take it back.
“I told her we didn’t handle interior botanicals, but she insisted on ‘us’ doing something. She gave me her name and address and I looked the order up, but couldn’t find anything that matched. I told her we weren’t the company that delivered the tree.
“She begged me to send some men to come get it. To take it away. It was in her house and it terrified her.
“I asked her what type of tree it was. She said a large palm or maybe a banana tree. And, it was shaking.
“I asked what she meant by it ‘shaking,’ and she said the tree trunk was quivering on its own and the branches and fronds were thrashing.
“I didn’t know what to say to her. We didn’t deliver the tree or have any connection to it. But her voice was rising in fear and anxiety, so I told I’d send out some men to check the tree.
“Then she began screaming. She dropped the phone, hollering as she ran. I could hear several doors slam.
“I sent out two workers immediately.
“When they came back they were pretty white-faced. I asked where the tree was, as the back of the truck was empty. They said they left the tree there, and took the lady away instead, drove her to a friend’s house. They said someone else needed to be called about this tree.
“’Who?’ I asked.
“‘An exterminator!’ they replied.
“Turns out the quivering and thrashing, the shaking, happened because there was an egg sac, or sacs, in the center of the banana tree and that egg sac(s) came to fruition and hatched, sending out hundreds, if not thousands, of tiny spiders, that burst out of the tree with great force, and spread across the house, except for the bedroom of the woman, who had stuffed clothing under the door. The men pulled her out of her bedroom window to get her to safety.
“Whether it was baby tarantulas or baby Phoneutria, or wandering spider, the sheer numbers of them freaked everyone out. At our company, we never knew if the spiders were life threatening or not. But the fear they inspired was.
“The house was exterminated. The old lady moved back in.
“But we never found out from where the banana tree came.”
1. That’s a mystery that will plague you forever.
When I was at uni I lived in a group house with 4 other guys. The place was affectionately known as the House of Broken Vehicles. A lot of former roommates still had keys and randos would occasionally wander in and out.
So one day we come home and there is a cone of sawdust over 30cm high (one foot high a bit more than one foot around) in the dining room. As flat mates come home one by one everyone denies leaving there. It becomes a thing that no one will vacuum it up. (Our vacuum was a heavy ShopVac kept in the basement).
Anyway, this cone of sawdust stays in the dining room for over three weeks. We kept figuring an old flat mate would mention pranking us sooner or later but it never happened.
Then one day we come home and someone had stuck a small toothpick flag in the top of the cone. The flag said, “1 STYLE POINT” and nothing else.
Finally, the guy who kinda collected the rent lugged the ShopVac upstairs and vacuumed up the sawdust but we never found out who left the cone or who put the flag on top.
I’m feeling a bit left out that I never got anything super fun delivered on accident!
Has this ever happened to you? If something interesting arrived, share what it was in the comments!