Friday, October 28, 2011

A Home Away From Home

Maybe I have been too task oriented lately. In my determination to "git 'er done," I haven't lifted my bent-over-pen-and-paper head long enough to smell the tea. Could be I'm too busy making tick marks on the wall behind my stacks to enjoy the journey of "catching up." So, I took a bunch of hours off to have a little fun. This is some of what I did:

Welcome to my other address? Why, oh, why, can't my other address be in Hawaii? In Colorado? Or even Italy? I'd settle for Galveston Island. I had to settle for reality instead. The postoffice really is my other address, and I've spent a lot of time there lately. Last week I was there 6 days out of seven days. And guess what.

Yesterday, it was four for four. Moanday through Hump Day. On Moanday, a regular clerk-- by regular, I mean she waits on me often enough that we're getting to know each other-- looks forward to examining every piece of mail I turn over that requires extra services. She asks about my incoming, and two days ago she expressed her disappointment over my disappointing out-going mail. Translation: None of my outgoing mail was embellished beyond a polite splash of color, or a new address label. 

Can you believe it? She called to mind the first time I made a C in second grade. Mama said, "Oh, I have to show this to your father." Of course I thought it was something to be proud of. I'd never earned a C before. 

Silly me, thinking Daddy would be happy, I was confused when he saw it after dinner, and said "BJ, I'm surprised at you." The emphasis was on "you," meaning he was used to my older sister bringing home Cs, but not me. What did I know. In our home surprises were good things. Daddy had never explained that surprised had two meanings before, so I grinned like I'd brought home a golden apple, or a trophy. Mama explained it to me later. Oh, the shame and disappointment a C can bring down on a girl's head.

Disappointment can do several things. It can make a person determined to do better. Or it can make them feel, "If you think you're disappointed now, wait until next time, 'cause darlin, you won't see my flair again until long after the barn doors are bolted." Meaning, some people don't cotton to being told they're a disappointment. Guess which category I manage to slip under. Rather unintentionally, though.

Then yesterday, day after Hump Day, I was given the pleasure of knowing I've been dubbed the Park Row Post Office's Inspiration. Seriously. My favorite clerk, "Char" told me I inspire them with my mail art, frequency in writing, the amount of mail I write, and by the beautiful, artistic, clever, original, interesting mail I receive. She confessed that SHE OFTEN READS MY MAIL!. By that, I hope she meant the postcards, but even that's a no-no. 

Dose anyone recall me mentioning some of my mail had been opened and read? A letter from Wales was opened and read, and the postcard neatly placed on top. Two postcards from opposite sides of the world bore the same liquid paper drops, AND imprints from the bottom of the bottle? Since then, I try to glue, tape, and solder my outgoing mail seams. I think it was Rusty who asked what I used to glue my envelope flaps. LOL. I use bookbinder's glue.

I wondered why my stacks of mail are often put to the side, instead of being tossed into the big box on wheels, destined for the back. It's  being critiqued, examined, and whatever . . . It's nice to hear those ladies are inspired to write and embellish on a regular basis, but have you ever wondered if they write more than the average person? I have, and what I've learned disappoints me. They're running campaigns to get Americans writing to save the post office. Well, what about them? I am going to start a campaign to get them, the postal employees to write letters, too. After all, it's only fair. Don't you think? They're like bartenders who don't drink.

. . . to be continued.


  1. Limner ~
    I do think it's only fair that the post office employees should be "encouraged" to write more. We're doing our part to save the postal service. They should make an effort to save their jobs as well. :-)
    I can truly understand why the gals at your post office love looking at your mail --- incoming and outgoing. I know how beautiful the pieces you create and send are firsthand, and I have seen via your blog the gorgeous mail art you receive from those who correspond with you. If they read your words, they have the added bonus of reading beautiful prose. Really, girl, why aren't you writing a book or some such thing? You have a real gift with the written word.

  2. Great post! I'm sure your in/out going mail is the most exciting thing that happens to the clerks. Seriously. Mail otherwise is boring. I try to stamp all my outgoing envelopes with at least something for the recipient to look at.

  3. Susan, your envie with the spider, the web, and Frankenstein who's a dead green ringer for Dudley Do-right is one of the envies she admired. I tend to check my mailbox before standing in line for postage. That way I have something to do, like read mail, while I wait. :) So, good job.

  4. Motherkitty, I am going to write a letter for each clerk and give it to them for Halloween. They may choose to look at it as a trick or treat, depending on their personality. :) I will include some of your blog links, with suggestions that they "visit" for eye-openers. And, yes, you are so right. We pay them, so they should spend a little to help themselves. They have become nicer of late. Last holiday, there were no slow-downs. My jaw dropped. They were herding people, getting them moving, serviced, and out, lickety-split. With smiles. :)

    Aw, shucks, thanks for being so sweet. Your letters and envies are always genteelly embellished. Your stationery and notecards are so lovely, they don't need anything extra. And another and: For real, I am one of the luckiest letter-writing peeps on the planet. I get great mail, awesome perks, and y'all help me keep my tear ducts flushed. :)

    Oh, my. You're talking about me? I'm just a Texan who probably needs a remedial grammar course. I am much obliged on account of your comments though. Bless your heart. You are one of the sweetest ladies I know. You're always a lady, whereas I cuss and forget my manners on a regular basis. I'm just too old to want to change much.

  5. One more time: Susan, I think you're right. I surreptitiously glance at other people's mail while waiting in line, and no one ever has anything remotely like the gravy I get on my mail. :) Twice, people standing behind me have admired the mail in my hand. Wish we could have a mail-writing party in the lobby some Saturday morning, but I'd probably faint like those little goats if I had to demonstrate something. LOL. The very idea of so many eyes on me makes me start to hyperventilate.

    Your envies are inviting. Too often I read some of my mail in the parking lot. Am just too curious to wait. :) And your note cards! Your photos are as lovely as Hallmark cards.

    Glad you liked the post. Wait until you see what came in today's mail. I didn't feel like driving, but something kept urging me to go to the post office. I eventually asked JC if he would mail my stack and check my box. OMG! ;)

    Y'all are the best!

  6. Though I get my most of my mail at a post office box, all my outgoing leaves from my home mailbox. My mail carrier notices the volume of outgoing mail but never comments on it (I know he notices because he leaves elastic bands in my mailbox for me to bundle outgoing). I have chatted with him on occasion and always wish he would say something like "I love that postcard you sent to Spain" or "You had a busy weekend ... lots of envelopes in the box on Monday!" but he never does. The postal workers at the post office always comment on my incoming, though, and they do read the postcards.

    On another note ... your wonderful blog no longer updates in my Google Reader. Last post that appeared is dated September 29. I'm going to have to do some investigating to find out why the feed isn't feeding!