I like my mailman -- and if he loses his job, I am afraid I might go postal.
Lori Curley: Let me explain. I'm not unstable, but I work from home -- which is very nerve-wracking. Some days my mailman is the only real person over age 12 that I talk to.
So much of my day is wasted repeating phrases like "Customer Service" (pronounced "Kust-ar-mar Sur-face") to automated secretaries named "Carol." Or hitting the star key when I should be hitting the pound key to reach an automated message, or another "Carol." After screaming profanities at these robots, I enjoy the relief of chatting with my mailman, Chris.
We talk about the weather, the sidewalk, the turning leaves and taxes. When I discuss these mundane topics with my children, it often leads to their commenting, "How do YOU know?" or to dismissive eye-rolling. Chris is never so rude. He is far more pleasant and insightful than the people at the IRS or the Department of Motor Vehicles, too.
In many ways, he is my only connection with our federal government. I realize that he is becoming a dinosaur because of e-mail and online banking, but I hope that, if push comes to shove, the U.S. government will let go of some surly desk people -- perhaps even "Carol" -- instead of Chris.
|Lori Curley, champion mother of two middle-school teenagers, resides in South Orange, N.J. She holds a Masters in Education and has been teaching writing at the college level for seven years. But can she find a job as a high-school English teacher? Or will she pull her hair out first?|