Mail Performance Issues

I’m no home owner. That’s for real adults. I rent. Sadly, my house isn’t exactly a mansion, but I like it. It doesn’t even have a driveway, but I still like it. I like it so much that I’ve lived there (or I guess I should say here) for two years now. The house on one side of me, it has a driveway. And the house on the other side of me is on the corner. They don’t have a driveway either, but that’s not a problem for them with their corner spot. When they park their car they either park on the side or hop their car up the curb and park in their yard. Classy, I know. My options are a bit more limited. I have no choice but to park on the street. I refuse to park in the yard. Sorry folks, just not my style. My mailbox is also right there on the street. Little did I know that my standard street parking protocol would wreak havoc on my mail carrier’s livelihood.

Because my car ends up being sort of in the way, the mail carrier can’t drive right through to my mailbox to pop in my mail. What’s the solution? Well, you would think that maybe said mail carrier would go just a little above and beyond the call of duty (or what used to be called doing their job), park their mail truck, and walk the maybe 4 feet to my mailbox. You would think this and you would be wrong.

Instead, the solution has been to simply stop delivering my mail. The mail carrier’s ridiculous answer to this equally ridiculous predicament would have me parking up the road on the next corner and walking back to my house rather than parking right in front of my house. So as to free up a straight line for her to zoom in her mail truck. Yeah. Right.

OK, so no home delivery. That’s okay. I’ve come to terms with this and rented a PO Box. It’s the only choice if I ever want to, you know, get my mail. I could do without bills of course, but letters from loved ones, online purchases, those I don’t mind actually receiving. Call me crazy but getting some of my mail is sort of a big deal to me.

I’ve done a good job of letting people know not to do something as audacious as mailing something to my house, but every once in a while it does happen. Things slip through. When it does happen, rather than (again) getting out of the truck and going the approximately 4 feet it takes to put the item in my mailbox or—gasp!—bringing it up to my doorstep which is not that much further from the mailbox or even sticking it in, say, the PO Box they know I own (because I’m at the post office ALL the freakin’ time) the mail carrier marks it undeliverable and the item gets returned to sender.

Again, bills, those can go back to the sender any old day. Like I care. But it never happens with them. Of course not. The only times it has happened is with pretty important items. Figures, right?

When I eventually find out about it, the same, simple question rolls through my head, and out of my mouth: WTF? I have no idea why the carrier avoids my mailbox like the plague. It’s not like we’ve had words. And I’ve seen her deliver, on foot no less, to other houses, but not mine. It can’t be some slow burning personal vendetta either because I’ve never even met her. So WTF? I have a perfectly good mailbox just sitting there as it should, just waiting for mail to be delivered. Plus…PLUS, I have a perfectly good PO Box for extra insurance, but even with that in place I’m never truly guaranteed of getting my mail.  I’m beginning to get a complex if truth be told.

Everyone INSIDE the post office is great (again, I know this because I deal with them on a daily basis, no exaggeration). The carrier? Anything but. I have my own real life Newman making decisions for me on what’s deliver-worthy and what’s not.

This letter from the school system? Doesn’t look important and the mailbox is so, sooo far away. Toss it. An elegant invitation to a high-brow event?  Nahh, she couldn’t be possibly interested in that. Send it back.  But this $10 coupon for Depends? Oh, she’s gonna want to see this one. Let it through.

Ahh, small town life. It never ceases to amaze.

no mail for you

18 thoughts on “Mail Performance Issues

  1. I would have thought that failing to deliver mail to an approved mailbox would be a breach of contract between the contractor and the postal service. I’m sure there are remedies available to you.

    Here NZ Post has reduced residential mail delivery from six days per week to three. From the way some people have reacted, you’d think the end of the world was nigh. But really, how much mail comes via the postal service these days?

    • So far, they haven’t offered too many helpful solutions. I had to get a PO Box and forward my mail from MY HOUSE to my PO Box. Then, they put up a note (apparently they have to put up notes to the carriers on a myriad of issues) that states mail addressed to me at the house should be put in my PO Box. Duh. And of course I never know there’s even a problem until someone contacts me because they’ve received a piece of mail back. It’s ridiculous.

  2. First of all, your title is a classic – but you knew that!

    Secondly, I have a theory. You say that you’re renting the house, which means that someone else lived there before. Do you know who they were? Probably not. Do you know why they moved out? Probably not. My theory says that they moved out because they couldn’t ever get their mail delivered. Why couldn’t they get their mail delivered? Did they know who lived there before THEM? Probably not. Did they know why THEY moved out? Probably not. My theory says that THEY were rumored to be homicidal axe murderers who were threatening to kidnap and kill the mail carrier’s favorite gerbil, Maximilian the Seventeenth. OR AT LEAST THAT’S WHAT THE MAIL CARRIER THOUGHT! In fact, the pre-previous tenants of the house you now live in were, my theory says, peaceful and loving Quakers who moved out to go live in Zzyzx, California and bring the Good Word to the lizard people who live underground in secret there. But your mail carrier, my theory says, got her mistaken believe about the Quakers when they were first introduced at a local Illuminati meeting when the Quakers, practicing their Zzyzxian, said “Glatow uuf schtiiiike!” in greeting, but the mail carrier, with her hearing aid on the fritz, heard “Gerbil on a stick!” From there things took their natural course and now you don’t get mail. According to my theory.

    • Thank you. I was quite proud of the title myself. I like your theory by the way. Of course that means, as so often is the case, I’ve jumped to conclusions and have judged her harshly when I shouldn’t have. Ahhh, just one more reason I’m eventually burning in hell. And you know, the whole gerbil killing ax murderer/lizard people/Quaker/Illuminati connection would explain A LOT about the people in my small town.

    • When the latest incident happened a week or so ago, the people inside the post office decided to put out a note to the carriers, (because apparently they’ve had a lot of “subs” lately, and they require a lot of “notes” telling them things) that states ‘put the mail addressed to me in my PO Box.’ They actually had to put a note on the board at the sorting station for this. The fact that it should just be a given is not enough. Why not just put out a note that says “mail that is addressed to this particular house should go in the mailbox located AT this house”??

  3. wow. that is unbelievable. the fact that there are so many incompetent people out here with jobs has never ceased to amaze me! what happened to having integrity when it comes to your job?? and how is that okay that you are reduced to having to get a p.o. box? craziness!

  4. personally, I believe we should “puppytize” the mail service- – yes, it is time to jump outside the box and send it to the dogs. Of course, you might have to employ a Jack Russell or Yorkie inside the office to do some of the more important mental work there, but the general mail delivery would be assigned to a “responsible neighborhood canine.” I do not doubt that the percentage of mail that reaches the intended destination should remain relatively unchanged with this new system, and the government can save millions of dollars in the process.

  5. Didn’t there used to be a post office creed that went “neither snow nor rain nor heat…”? What happened to that shining example of professional dedication? Did it get tossed out with the gold standard? I can understand a snarling dog preventing the routine delivery of the mail, but a car parked at the curb? Clearly, somebody’s digging from the bottom of excuse barrel, here.

    Call me old-fashioned, but I think the job of a letter carrier should be to, like, carry letters and stuff. Which includes depositing said letters into mailboxes.

    But again,I suppose that’s just me being an out-of-date fuddy-duddy.

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