Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Boxie Goes Postal! And other fun adventure stories.

One of the things the government can't do is run anything. The only things our government runs are the post office and the railroads, and both of them are bankrupt. – Lee Iacocca

It isn’t hard to see why the above quote rings true when you visit your friendly neighborhood post office. As my father often reminds me, however, our USPS is absolutely streamlined and effective when compared to most foreign post offices. For example, in Italy you spend a few dollars to mail an envelope with a 50/50 shot that it will indeed arrive at its final destination. And in that light, please consider the sequel to our original Boxie adventure: “Boxie Goes Postal.”

On the Thursday before Chinese New Year, I couldn’t do anything right! Clearly the “fireworks” of CNY were not in my heart and clearly holiday cheer was not in the hearts of the general public visiting our post office. Isn’t it a fact that the P.O. never has enough workers and so service never appears speedy? (Whether the average P.O. employee goes “above and beyond” is not a topic to be explored in this piece.)

True or False: People at the P.O. generally form commiserative bonds in line due to their collective experience of long waits and dissatisfaction. (Answer: FALSE)

I stood in line for 30 minutes awaiting “mini-boxie” from Perryton (as Jenny aptly named it—perhaps it was made from Boxie’s remains?), which contained our goods for sale at Te House of Tea’s CNY party. The line had not moved. One gentleman had been at the counter for a solid 20 minutes with the clerk making repeated trips to the “abyss” that is the back of the post office only to return with the same question. Being me, I found this dynamic very amusing. So, when the gentleman turned around and looked at the line of people, I smiled and (unfortunately) winked. Then things seemed to come straight out of Hollywood.

{The gentleman, GM, walks directly towards me.}
GM—“You winking at me?!”
{Blushing, with my hands raised in defensive posture.}

Me—“No, sir.”
{Anger in his eyes.}

GM—“I didn’t think so!”

At this point, the random guy (slightly creepy already) next to me decides to diffuse the situation.

RG—“You having a bad day, sir?”
{GM looks directly at me.}
GM—“It’s the trash you see these days.”
{RG to me.}

RG—“I think he is having a bad day.”

This was my first experience with the term “going postal.” Thankfully, he was still handling his affairs at the counter when I left, or I may have had to call Aaron to come pick me up. I have to admit, however, I learned my lesson. No commiserating at a place as frustrating as the post office, and from now on NO WINKING.

The products arrived, the event was excellent, and I learned a lesson. That’s success!!


P.S. My brother reminded me that I do have an awkward wink. I’ve never been good at it.

P.P.S. The United States Postal Service does not approve of the term "going postal".


  1. Oh my word! I can honestly say I've never quite had an experience like this at the PO. If it's busy and someone is holding up the line in our small town, they usually just open another line.

    Your 'winking' story is hillarious though...sounds like the "gentleman" was {uhh-hemmm} NOT-SO-MUCH!!! ;)

  2. I feel like we practiced winking one time, which apparently didn't help your winking skills.

  3. Yes, we did have a practice session. We decided that winking was not a strength. And, as we know you can improve your strengths by a greater percentage than your weaknesses. So, we gave up.

    For the record, my mother told me to stop winking thousands of times--she was right. (there Mom.)