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I Love the Post Office!

by Jessica Brandt

Mention "Post Office" to most people and they wince. Why is that? Apparently, many people have had some sort of strange, horrible experience with the U.S. Postal Service. People also seem to think that Post Office = Deranged, gun-toting, overworked employees. I admit, the Post Office has had more than its share of "incidents" over the years, but it hardly compares to our public schools, and no one really thinks all that badly about them, do they?

So anyway, people say their stuff always gets lost in the mail. They say their stuff takes too long to get there. They say STAMPS COST TOO MUCH.

Bullshit, I say.

First off, you stuff wouldn't get lost in the mail if you actually took two seconds to LEGIBLY write addresses out. No fancy cursive, please. See, in order to de-stress their employees, the Post Office became more computerized. Therefore, your mail is not sorted by Mail Carrier Jones anymore, but a computer. Computers are not exactly as smart as Mail Carrier Jones in that they cannot read crappy handwriting. Why should they have to? Computers are superior to You and I, so why must we try to confuse them?

So one way to get your mail sent on time, and keep it from getting lost, is to clearly write all addresses in all capital letters, leaving out punctuation (no, this is not a grammar test. It is perfectly fine- nay, preferred - that you write CLEVELAND OH.) Don't forget to take a minute to find the CORRECT zip code!!

And this business of stamps costing too much... bah! First off, who uses "snail-mail" anymore, anyway? If you can't afford to buy a computer, I can understand. But really...can't afford 33 cents to send a letter to your grandma?! Is she not WORTH 33 cents? You can send about 5 pieces of letter-sized paper for 33 cents. Really...

So now you've gotten over your fear of lost mail and costly postage. What about the quickness of the Postal Service? Speedy, I tell ya! It takes about one full day for mail to reach from my house (in MACEDONIA OH) to as close as Cleveland to as far away as North Carolina. I'm not sure about California or the like, but I mean, the mail doesn't move by itself!

There's also different kinds of mail- Priority Mail, 1-day mail, overnight- it's so cool. And it's not very expensive at all. Plus, it's much easier to find your local Post Office than it is to find UPS or FedEx (believe me, I've tried.)

I became hooked on the beauty of the Post Office about 3 or 4 years ago when I began trading tapes heavily. My brother and I would do weekly "mail runs" to send tapes all over God's Green Earth. From Scranton to Sweden, from Portland to Poland, it all got there okay. The best thing is, they never once asked us why we were constantly sending little packages all over the place. They've got dogs for that!

Our town recently got a new Post Office. I must admit, I was a little leery of whether my mail would make it from the desk to the mail bag, let alone to its final destination, from the old Post Office. But that was then, this is the New Post Office.

Our new Post Office is the combination of the two crappy Post Offices in my area. They put it right smack dab in the he middle of the two cities, too. It's clean and friendly and the lines aren't usually too long. An employee of the old Post Office, a man known only as "T-Cat," still works there. And he usually has candy or home-baked cookies on his desk to share. The Post Office People always help me send my stuff, helping me get the best handling out of my packages, and giving me tips on wrapping them up and whatnot. They still don't ask what's in the packages.

The hours are good at the Post Office, too. They're open till 4:45 or 5 or so. Even on weekends. Even on SUNDAY (not that the mail is going out then, but it's getting ready!)

Another cool thing about the Post Office is all the neat things you can get there. Collector's stamps and stamp periferals, packing and shipping materials, cookies, picture frames, money orders, copies...etc.

Now, I thought it was maybe just my Post Office that was so special. One time, tho, I found myself having to stop at the Post Office near Kent State, where I go to school. They had gone through the same renovations as my neighborhood Post Office! I was so excited. I felt a Post Office Revolution evolving. I was eager to visit other Post Offices to see what they had to offer. Maybe if I found a bad one, like the dank old ones from my childhood, I would help the citizens lobby for a new one. Maybe I could have my own Post Office!!

Of course, I haven't visited any other Post Offices other than my nice neighborhood one and the one in Kent. But someday I plan on finding another happy little Post Office. Maybe I can find one like the ones I've seen on TV, with old men playing checkers or backgammon outside. And maybe they'll be waiting for the new Bugs Bunny stamps to come out. Or maybe the old fat Elvis!

Viva la Post Office!

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