I hate junk mail. I really do. It’s a waste of resources and a waste of my excitement—because I always get excited when I have mail, and am then disappointed that it’s junk mail.

But I always open my junk mail. Always. And then I shred it. Or use it for fire starter.

And why do I open it? Well, because you get some pretty cool free stuff sometimes.

Sometimes that cool stuff is return address labels or stickers. Sometimes it’s a sample of a new dish soap or shampoo. Sometimes it’s coupons for useful (or useless) stuff. And sometimes it’s little note cards.

But sometimes it’s money. Yes, really. Sometimes it’s money.

I bet you didn’t know that, did you?

Well, it’s not unheard of for surveys to have money in them;* generally $2-5 depending on the company. Kind of a way to entice you to fill it out and turn it in. Which, since they also include pre-paid return envelopes, I always do. After all, I’d feel guilty taking the money otherwise.

So today when I opened my week’s junk mail I wasn’t surprised to see that The Nielsen Company included two, crisp, un-folded $1 bills in the envelope.

Which means I got two bucks just for opening my junk mail. Yay!

How about you? Do you open your junk mail? Will you open it now that you know there might be money in it?

* In the UK they often include a cheapy pen in the envelope—which makes it ever-so-easy to fill out the form immediately! But, sadly, I never got money for my efforts there…