You won't be getting $33.90 from me for something I didn't order and immediately returned to you.

Dear Cook’s Illustrated,

You have a phenomenal magazine. You offer wonderful online content through CooksIllustrated.com. America’s Test Kitchen is a great show. But your business practice of sending merchandise that I didn’t order? Appalling.

Today in the mail, I got a bill:

“It has been more than six months since we shipped you the item(s) you ordered and we shipped to you in good faith.

Please return the enclosed Invoice with your payment to avoid having your account referred to a collection agency.

FULL PAYMENT IS DUE IMMEDIATELY.

TO AVOID HAVING YOUR ACCOUNT SENT TO A COLLECTION AGENCY.

(Their punctuation and line spacing, which galls me nearly as much as the invoice itself.)

Oh really?

I’ve long known about your business practice of sending merchandise that hadn’t been ordered. Knowing that this is a scam, I’ve taken to refusing delivery of anything from Cooks Illustrated, marking it as “Delivery Refused, Return to Sender” with a giant Sharpie and handing it back to my mailman.

You have been trying to get me to pay for this cookbook for months. After the first bill, I called, waited on hold for 20 minutes, and explained the situation to your weary-sounding customer service rep who assured me that this was simply a billing error and that there would be no further issues. Well, we have issues. I’m not waiting on hold again. And I’m not paying. Period.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have a claim to file with the Better Business Bureau to add yet another black mark to your D+ business rating. And the invoice? It’s going in the shredder.

Sincerely,

Alisa

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