Not Bloody Likely

Um, hi. I’m trying to get an estimate on a small move.

Where from?

— New Orleans.

And to?

— Southern California.

How small a move?

— I’m in a small one-bedroom, but it’s really sparsely furnished. So not much stuff at all. Like I’m not even taking my bed, right.


— I’ve used some online inventories and they estimate that my stuff would come in at around 1500 pounds.

Let’s say 1700, to be safe.

— Okay…

So, if that’s 1700 pounds… and roughly 1800 miles… let’s say 1850 to be safe… and if we add the origin… [inaudible mumbling, backed up by the sound of an adding machine]… and destination… and [inaudible, followed by much production from the adding machine]… it comes to right about $1700.

— Okay, 1700. That’s based on the weight, right? So what if my stuff actually weighs more, or less?

Oh. No. This is a binding estimate.

— Based on…? I mean, you haven’t seen my stuff.

Yeah, but I’m giving you the TPG rate. I could give you the 400N, sure, and then we could deal with the actual weight, but then I wouldn’t really be free to discount the price.

— Mm-hm. And in terms of insurance…?

The price includes a valuation of 70 cents per pound per article. You can buy more if you want more, up to $2.50 per pound per article. Or you can get replacement coverage, up to $10,000, for $264 for no deductible, or $60 for a $500 deductible.

— And what are your windows like for pickup and dropoff?

We’ve got a three-day pickup spread. And then there’s a five-day transit time. So counting the actual day of pickup as day 1, the dropoff window begins on day 6 and extends to day 18.

— Uh-huh. Great. That’s what I needed to know.

Call us back when you’re ready to get this started.


  1. Hey, K, the audience may be quiet, but we’re reading. (Folks need a little extra time to think about things like ramifications of the supposed demise of the novel. I haven’t been able to mount a good defense of the form yet–of the need for new novels, anyway. I too would be dismayed if there were no more, but sometimes I wonder if our fiction-reading and -writing time wouldn’t be better spent catching up on the ones we missed, or even just rereading Anna Karenina over and over.)

    Good luck with the move.

  2. Thanks for the comments, and for letting me know that there are indeed folks still out there. I was hoping, but uncertain.

    Given the move and the desperate race to polish the MS, the pace of posting is likely to slow a bit over the next couple of weeks, so hopefully there’ll be more time to ponder…

  3. Yeah, what Bill and Mariah said. Incidentally, I got seven hits this month from your site, K – as soon as I get my damn site redesigned (said time constraints) I’ll weblog in our time for you.

    Anyway, the reason I’m commenting is b/c container shipping might be yr way to go.

  4. Thanks, bootsy, for the rec first of all. I went with a company that gave me both a container and a full-serve quote, and the full-serve quote was not far enough off to make a difference, so I leant in the direction of other folks packing up the truck for me. (Astonishing what a regular income will do for you. Of course, within 24 hours thereafter, my stepfather was relating to me stories off of Dateline NBC or whathaveyou about online moving companies who suddenly demand $8,000 to release possessions to their rightful owners, so we’ll see.)

    Thanks, also, for the blogging. I’ll look forward to seeing your site design, when time allows.

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