Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Take a Letter, Maria

Dear Postal-Going Public,

You have heard me complain about my postal service.

I didn't think it possible, but it's actually in decline.

Picture this: my neighbourhood is nine square blocks en toto, including shopping and open space. It is ACROSS THE STREET from the post office. It is served by five or seven banks of mailboxes.§

The postmaster at the post office across the street tells me our little corner of the postal world is a Training and Limited Abilities Route. Brother's mailman, Dave,# tells him that when someone is done with his route, he just grabs a tub of Highland Gardens Village mail and delivers it.

I've seen four mailmen delivering to four different boxes at the same time. We're just not getting consistency.

[SUMMARY: Therein lies the rub.]

And the rub turns to the smoking electric sander when sights like this become common:

I don't have a picture around the corner behind me from there, but there's another USPS minivan also double parked.††

And look closely:

Two mailmen. Working the same bank of mailboxes.

It used to be invitations would go missing with uncanny regularity. And bills.‡‡ And the amount of mail I got for random and varied other people was amazing.§§

[SUMMARY: We are about to go from bad to worse.]

Now my packages are going missing and I want pounds of flesh.

Eca's package, which is going on four weeks missing.

Nathan's package, which shows as delivered on Friday.

Knit Picks order, which shows arrived at my post office last Wednesday.

You may wonder why I'm bitching here.¶¶

[SUMMARY: My point, and I do have one...]

Well, for one, the nice people who mail me things that aren't bills should be aware. I feel like I need to explain and apologise for my post office like I would if my unruly child was running amok in a bank.##

For another, when Paddy P complained about Comcast in his blog, he got a near-immediate reply from a random Comcast worker and all his problems were solved. I'm guessing Comcast is more in tune with its constituency than the post office, so I don't have high hopes, but... it couldn't *hurt* to put the vibe out.†††

[SUMMARY: Hope springs eternal.]

Hey, I clap for Tinkerbell. This couldn't be any dumber than clapping for Tinkerbell.

*clapclapclap* I do! I do believe in the postal service! *clap*

FOOTNOTE (crossed): The post office has heard me complain about my postal service. My family has heard me complain about my postal service. Sylvia has heard me complain about my postal service. The checkout clerk at the grocery store has heard me complain about my postal service.

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): Read: a steep and rapidly increasing downward spiral that makes the White Cliffs of Dover look like a pleasant Sunday stroll, steep-wise.

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): Nobody in the 'hood has a mailbox on their actual house.

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): Which makes sense. I could deliver the fucking mail with *my* limited abilities, it's that compact and easy.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): We all live in the same larger neighbourhood. And Brother goes to the gym that is six steps from my front door, so he occasionally runs into Dave, delivering mail to me.

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): Most of our neighbourhood was not built with sufficient clearance for cars to park on both sides of the street and still allow for two-way traffic, much less double-parked mail minivans.

‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): I'm waiting for the day somebody sues the post office because their botched delivery caused a nasty case of stolen identity.

§§FOOTNOTE (fuming mad): I once got a piece of mail addressed to a Jiffy Lube, from Jiffy Lube headquarters, on an entirely different street than mine, with an entirely different street number than mine, in a different zip code than mine.

¶¶FOOTNOTE (I have TWO talking sticks): But you're probably just used to it by now.

##FOOTNOTE (let me pound this point home): And by "my," I mean, "my," since I know not everybody shares my feeling that we are responsible for our children, pets, cars... I'm not going to start.

†††FOOTNOTE (three ticks to stop and think about that): Unless, y'know, it's like when the waiter spits in your eggs because you complained.

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