My beef with the US Postal Service.

Today I would like to address a significant cause of stress in my life. And It is called the United States Postal Service.

I will preface this rant by stating that I am a sane and rational person. As such, I recognize that the vast majority of USPS employees are decent, hard-working and law-abiding people. I have in fact befriended many lovely postal employees over the years, and have tremendous respect for the job that they do. It must be hard coping with ton after inescapable ton of mail, slogging through the Rain and snow, the sleet and unbearable heat, while having to wear those dorky postal uniforms and pith hats.

BUT since moving into our palatial West Philly estate 7+ years ago, my husband & I have endured what can only be described as the worst mail service this side of hell. Open mail. Mangled mail. No mail at all. Stolen? Lost? Who knows. AND DON’T BOTHER ASKING AT THE POST OFFICE B/C no one cares! While some folks get stacks of junk mail, circulars, loads of crap daily – we get other people’s mail or nothing at all. 4814 NEXT STREET, 4822 SOMEPLACE ELSE. it ALL WINDS UP HERE, B/c our postal carrier has difficulty distinguishing between our house and those surrounding it. In addition, we receive mountains of mail for former tenants, including school statements, retirement benefits, and other arguably important paperwork for one guy who – though obviously Very well educated, somehow missed the whole concept of a “change of address” form.

For the past 92 MONTHS (YES I HAVE CALCULATED) I have been dealing with this. Several years ago, we resorted to opening a PO Box at the central Philly post office hoping we’d finally improve our lot. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH!

Today is February 24th, as you know. WELL PAST Valentine’s Day, BUT – there is still one very special valentine I’ve yet to receive. Someone at the post office is banking on the fact that I did not know about this valentine, but they would be wrong. B/c it is from none other than my beloved parents. Said valentine contained not only a hand-chosen and doubt-less-ly beautiful card, but also 2 gift cards to Barnes & Noble for my husband & myself. I’m sure you can sense where this is going. When my father stuck the envelope into the post office mailbox on February 11th, he never suspected a thing. And why would he? Mailmen live by a code of honor, do they not? I don’t know why after all these years of INDESCRIBABLY PISS-POOR POSTAL SERVICE, this one event would leave me dry-heaving over all the others, but it does. Even more so than the $15,000 worth of loan checks that last year went -POOF! -into the postal ether. That one pretty much took the cake. But somehow, this is worse.

I have been considering how to address this. As my father scrambles with Barnes & Noble and American Express, trying to see what he can do on his end. I have been researching how to file a claim on mine. Unfortunately, since it was a simple card – without any insurance, there’s not much I can do. I can complain. But we all know that’s really not going to do anything, is it? I have my righteous indignation, but that only buoys one for so long. And it’s not like the USPS doesn’t warn against mail theft – b/c they do. They ever-so-kindly provide this handy list of anti-theft measures on their website, so that we all can guard against misfortune. Unfortunately, the list doesn’t warn you NOT TO PUT THE ENVELOPE IN THE MAIL SLOT B/C POSTAL WILLY’S UP TO NO GOOD. And that’s a shame, because it really really should.