Friday, February 3, 2012

Tales of the post office

You never know what's going to happen once you set foot inside a post office.

Tony Perez represents my general attitude towards the good ol' PO most of the time. Happy (okay, maybe not that happy) and excited, because I know that the packages I mail out are going to someone that is going to care for them more than I ever could. (Isn't that what trading is all about?)

Plus, I know that somewhere out there, someone is mailing cards that will be in my hands within a few days.

An example. Today, I had to mail a few things. I used the automated machine (why don't more people use these things instead of standing in line?), and was in and out within minutes. Fantastic.

No hassle.

But not all trips to the post office are that peachy.

I've been waiting to use this Bob Boone card for a while. It just has so many uses. It could represent being angry. Or maybe confused. Or if there's something that I'm not looking forward to. This card fits with all those.

For this post, let's make Bob Boone have an "angry" face.

It's not the postage increases. While it's hard to mail a lot of packages on a jobless teenager's budget with the recent postage hikes, I understand why the increase was needed. The post office has not done well at all over the last few years, and something needs to pay the bills. In the long run, it's a small fee for the cards you're getting in return most of the time.

I'm sure that 99 percent of people that go to the post office have some sort of idea on what they're doing when they get there. They don't have to know what "delivery confirmation" is or anything, all they need to know is that they have an address of where the package needs to go and they want to get it there. That's fine, and that's all I ask for out of anyone who has to mail something.

It's the other one percent that irritates me sometimes. The people that have absolutely no idea. I've been in line at the post office a few times where people in front of me have just tried to mail a blank box. No address, no nothing. Then they get upset when the postman says they need a mailing address.

My mom told me that a guy tried to mail a crate full of unwrapped hot dogs one of the times she was at the post office. Needless to say, he was turned away.

Last summer, someone hit the car I was driving while backing out of their parking space at the PO. No major damage, but it put a hamper on my day.

And the last time I was there, a guy was at the counter with literally a hundred packages that needed to be mailed. Chances are that if you've got that many things to mail, you're running a business of some sort. And if that's the case, there has to be alternative options of mailing your products. C'mon, man!

All in all, the post office is one of the more interesting places I've come across.

I'm sure we've all got our own "tales of the post office".


AdamE said...

There is a law in Missouri outlawing those do it yourself postage machines. You have to wait in line to even buy one stamp.

The PO is cheaper than other shipping outlets so small businesses use them. More than likely the guy with 100 packages was an ebay shipper sending stuff. I've been that guy. It sucks but depending what you are mailing you gotta do it.

Nick said...

Any idea on why those are outlawed in some states? I didn't know that was the case with the machines.

William Regenthal said...

They're probably outlawed due to postal restrictions. You know, anthrax and bomb scares and whatever. I love how I have been using my neighborhood post office since I moved to this town since April and they still look at me like I am a crazy person when I try to put return postage on my TTM mailers...

Hackenbush said...

Your post office can't be worse than the one my wife and I got stuck with in Lincolnwood, on Devon east of Lincoln. First off the place is a cave. Then they rarely have half the staff they need. I literally stood in line for half an hour to pick up a package. We would drive out to Skokie to mail something rather than stand in line there. It seemed like someone would always need a passport or something, leaving like one clerk left. Just horrible.

Nick said...

William- I never thought of that, it makes sense though.

Hackenbush- The PO I described in my post is actually really good, those are the only incidents I can remember since I started mailing packages myself a while back. I've heard quite a few PO horror stories like yours before, however.

AdamE said...

I was told that Missouri did it to try to keep jobs from getting cut due to them not needing someone at the counter because they can use the auto one.