Friday, December 31, 2010

Two Pieces Of Good News

1. Republican Joe Miller said today, nearly two months after Alaskans concluded voting, that he is giving up his fight challenging the election of Sen. Lisa Murkowski...
Miller, a self-proclaimed expert in constitutional law, had his challenges to Murkowski's election thrown out by an Alaska Superior Court judge from Ketchikan, a unanimous Alaska Supreme Court, and a U.S. District Court judge in Anchorage. The federal judge, Ralph Beistline, said the case against Miller was so overwhelming that he ruled before the state even filed all its arguments opposing Miller's claims.~from the anchorage daily news

2. After being off my diet for almost two weeks, I thought that I could no longer fit into my largest pants, but good news, I found an even larger pair of pants. 

Sent from my iPhone

Saturday, December 25, 2010

We Care

Yesterday another carrier showed me a letter that was being returned for additional postage. It was damaged, and in a "We Care" bag. Fair enough, those bags aren't free you know.

Not The One From The Matrix

The other night, I planned to read in bed, but instead of drifting into the arms of Morpheus, it was as if he held a pillow over my face.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Popping Balloons

One of my packages today arrived a little crushed. Apparently it started out as a balloon, so a little crushed was the same as a lot crushed. What made it a sticky situation was that if it was a balloon originally, it had been filled with syrup, so that all of the other packages were clinging to it, and each other. I had to individually bag each one. We have these special bags pre-printed with the words "We Care," which has   been tested as the most annoying phrase possible in these situations. We could probably include that right in the address labels that people print at our web site, and maybe for real customer service, throw in an insurance claim number, so you don't even have to wait for us to crush it before you file a claim.

If you don't live here in Alaska, you may not still be following our election news, but yesterday the Alaska Supreme Court gave the state an early Christmas present by ruling against every one of Joe Miller's challenges to Lisa Murkowski's election last month. If we've learned anything from having nightmare's though, it's that just when you think it's over, they appeal to the federal court. Joe Miller will decide on Monday which of his options to pursue. One option he listed was to concede, but that was pretty far down the list, along with hunting unicorns.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Be Careful What You Talk About With Your Children

Things you and your children talk about come haunting back years later. For example, a while ago, Sarah told me I was a "sad little man".  I was thinking about that yesterday, because all day delivering mail, I had a sad little obsession with  Triscuits, and by 9 pm I'd eaten an entire box of them. Not exactly the sort of midlife self-evaluation that results in a hospital for Sudan or even a new Corvette. Maybe it would seem a little grander accomplishment, if I mention that I also ate an entire box of chocolate covered macadamia nuts in bed last night. Oh, the shame, when I got up this morning and stepped on the empty wrappers in the unforgiving dark.
If midlife crises were literally midlife, then I should be dead anyway, since at  twenty eight I was struck by the fact that in twelve years I'd be forty, and if I didn't do something, I'd still be working at the post office. I still am, twenty eight years later.

Friday, December 17, 2010

I May Have Been A Little Hasty

The Belgians are also known for their waffles. In fact, there is a type of waffle known as a Brussels Waffle. Mmm.
Unfortunately, our tentative Christmas menu still calls for Brussels Sprouts.

Good Humor Man

Jack London and Robert Service with a few words could limn a picture of the Northland, and its bitter cold. Some of you may remember Larry Beck, the Bard of Alaska, and the shows he put on, but it fell to one of my customers to adequately describe the condensation that forms on my face mask as a "snotsicle".

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

The Wanderer

On Monday, I found out that last month I had made a really stupid mistake at work.  I found out this morning that while I was working to correct that mistake Monday evening, I made a similar, and equally stupid mistake.
Considering that sixty percent of Alzheimer's patients develop wandering, and that my job pretty much consists of walking around a neighborhood, can you imagine a more perfect fit? I can't, but that may just prove my point.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Bet You Can't Eat Just One, Or Even Any

It should be no surprise to learn that Belgium was the most cruel of the European colonial powers since even now, they allow that most of vile of vegetables to not only be eaten in their country, but celebrate it as Brussels sprouts.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Wave Action As A Cheesy Metaphor For Working Together

Did you know that when a wave passes through water, the water goes up and down, but individual particles of water remain where they were before the wave passed through? At least I think that's true; I'm no physicist, more of a metaphysicist. That is, we don't split atoms around here, just hairs.
Anyway, I was thinking about this today listening to the news and  almost hopping up and down with rage thinking about a country where oil is cheap because we think soldier's lives are too, and we can't even agree to tax income above a million dollars a year to help reduce the deficit.
I can hear you saying, "Wait, what? What are you talking about?"
 When you're hopping up and down with rage, you're not moving forward. Let's be the wave, not the water.

Monday, December 06, 2010

When The Streets Run With Blood, Be The Guy Selling Bandages

The people at Planet Money have a new podcast speculating on problems with the Eurozone's plan to rescue Ireland. For those of you not willing to click on that link and listen to the podcast, the kernel of the problem is that some of the countries guaranteeing the Irish loans, are the same countries that are about to default on their own loans.  I asked a savvy friend of mine who got out of the market before the crash a couple of years ago if he had any advice for this pending realignment. His advice was to take up farming and archery.
I've been working for the post office for more than 30 years now, and the entire time, I've been delivering letters from people purporting to hold open a door to the last exit before Armageddon, so I'm a little skeptical of end of the world scenarios. I went to bed early on the last night of 1999. Well, partly that was a hedge against disaster; if the world did fall apart, I wanted to be well rested. So, do you think there's sort of a middle ground between watching helplessly as the Euro loses value, and moving into a solar heated cave?

Sunday, December 05, 2010

Almost Exactly What I Would Have Said

The other day at work, a carrier said that his wife and  six year old daughter had just gotten home from Florida, where his daughter had been competing in a  beauty pageant. "Ooh, will she be on Toddlers and Tiaras?" I asked.
"No, that show is fake," he said, instead of the correct response, "No, that show is creepy."

Thursday, December 02, 2010

It's Always 1984 Somewhere

Senator Jim Demint, Senator from South Carolina, and member of a Washington D.C. cult,  is still raising money to fund Joe Miller's fight to overturn the election results up here. With so much time to spend on an election so far from home, you might think that South Carolina is doing so well that he can ignore his responsibilities to the people that (might) have elected him. But, not so. According to WolframAlpha, South Carolina has comparatively more criminals, more poor people and a less well educated population than Alaska, which might explain how he got elected in the first place. When he's not busybodying around up here, he's leading the charge to fight the deficit by making sure rich people get tax breaks paid for by cutting budgets for poor people. I would think that the hardest part of giving speeches in doublespeak would be to keep from laughing out loud at the people that believe you.