Sunday, May 21, 2017

Another Raggedy Assed Day

Published 1/31/2013

A Raggedy Assed Day

I went to the post office the last two days in a row. That means 6.1 miles each way. That is roughly 15 minutes one way. It sure feels longer. Today, I went to both post offices. The second trip took12 minutes and 6.8 miles get me to the closest post office, according to Map Quest. Something feels wrong here. No matter. I've had a raggedy assed day, so what's a messed up map gonna do to wreck it? The sunshine felt good.

Yesterday a stranger merged with me on the sidewalk that led to the post office front door. He asked me, "Ya like red much?" One, two, three. Before I could answer, he quipped, "I guess you like red 'cause you're driving a red car, and you're wearing a red windbreaker. I just figured you must like red. There's nothing wrong with it. People have different favorite colors."

All I did was turn, took a quick look at the Honda and kept walking. It's a deep dark red that borders on maroon. I looked down at my windbreaker. I said, "The Honda is my daughter's, and the windbreaker is mine." I am 99% patient and tolerant, most of the time. I'm not the old me, the one who kept her eyes on the sidewalk to avoid making eye contact with folks. I learned early on that eye contact means you are open for conversation. Okay. I'm shy, too. Some people have shy-dar. I get singled out for conversations every where I go. I was not in a receptive mood today though. It took a while for the stranger's words to sink in. When I'm in Funkville, I live with a barrier between me and thee. I know several people who would have asked him why he was dressed all in white. With red trim on his shirt. He wore a white Polo shirt, white shorts, he had white in his hair and beard, I think he wore white socks and white tennis shoes. And, he was white. He outdid me, right? Like the pot calling the kettle copper, huh?

I repeated myself. I kept walking. The inquisitive gentleman opened the heavy post office door on the right, allowed me to enter, and told me to "Have a nice day, ma'am." He was a little off balance by then. You see, I also told him this, "Yes. I like red. It's the color of life. It's the color of our life's blood. It's a sign of vim and vigor." Then I kept on walking. In silence. He kept up with me until we reached the door. Thinking on it now, I couldn't have made a snappy comeback because it's not my nature, but maybe I should have said . . . Heck if I know what. Why the heck did he notice me and my car out of all the other people going into that building? Aha! He didn't get my goat. See? I'm . . . I'm . . .

That happened at the second post office. The first post office had the stamps I need for my Valentine postcards. Yea! So I suffered through having to be there. And, yes, that same postal clerk who reminds me of Apu, pulled out his drawer and left a long line of customers waiting. He does that every single time I visit and he is there. He is the stereotypical federal employee.

Two replacement employees took to the counter. I was hoping to get the woman, but I got the sarcastic male, who reminds me of a mechanic. He was something else. He told anyone who would listen, "I don't do business with the United States Post Office." That's not all. The customer in line to the left of me got all loud and indignant. He told the clerk, "No way. No way am I going to pay ten bucks to mail that to Japan." He told them about themselves. They didn't get upset when he told them to remove the postage and give him his *&^%$ back. Wanted to ROFL here. He told us it was ridiculous to pay ten dollars to mail what he always pays five dollars to mail to the same destination. There's more:

Clerk: Have you mailed anything since the new rates went into effect.

Man: No. And I won't be doing business with you again. You guys are just putting yourselves out of business.

My Clerk: Yeah, man, they are.

Man: But, why?

My Clerk: They're trying to be competitive. They want to compete with UPS and FEDEX.

Smug me? I was smiling and commiserating at the same time. Then I snapped to. I said, "Oh, Lord, wonder what mine's gonna come to?"

My Clerk: Laughing. Oh, just you wait.

I saw the numbers in the little swiper, and prayed for dignity and grace. Let me tell you this: IT COST ME OVER $10 TO MAIL TWO CHOCOLATE BARS TO THE UK!

Excuse me. I have to walk away so I can swear inside my closet.