Tuesday, February 14, 2017

ode to the would-be thieving gypsy bstards of the postal services


after so many years of being subject to the vagaries of the corrupt, incompetent, criminal and frequently striking ways of the postal system in South Africa i have, look you see, enjoyed the reasonable, safe, secure and efficient ways in which it is all done here back at home. how quite unfortunate, then, that i should experience an incident which shatters this comfort zone.

a comfort zone which, in fairness, i was warned not to get too complacent about. i can just about recall when i got home getting all excited about a postal system that works. a friend, the noted theology instructor Franny i believe, warned me that fundamentally the post services and the staff which populate it are all complete twat in a bad way, and that i was simply setting myself up for disappointment.

that disappointment, alas, came through the letterbox.

the above, as so below, shows a greeting card which came in the post. the handwriting says it is off my sister. whilst the exact reason as to why she would be sending a greeting card escapes me for the moment, i would like to assure you all the same that it is not related to the 14th day of the 2nd month of the year. no, thank you, our family does not work that way.

anyway, as you can see, someone within the postal services has methodically, and indeed quite deliberately, torn a corner off of the envelop in which some form of greeting card is housed. why would they do such a thing? why, to see if there is any money or other such items of value in it, which they would then steal.

on the one side it is most amusing to think that my sister would randomly go "here, brother, have some coins of money in note form". another interpretation would be that "at least" they delivered the mail. in respect of the latter, quite true - in Africa they tended to just dump or burn the mail, irrespective of whether or not the dumper had the imagination to steal items.

an episode like this is deeply unpleasant. it is a shame that we, here in 2017, still have a society in which employment in the postal service is awarded, on a frequent basis, to those with a penchant if not proclivity for theft. all this whilst honest people, ones who would be glad to do the job without grumble and free from theft, remain ungainfully out of employment.

so far as i know, tampering with or intercepting mail in this way is illegal. when you complain, though, you find that the "evidence" requirements are impossible, and that the system is all set up so that no postal service anywhere has to deal with any unpleasant staffing realities. nice work if you can get it.

when one hears of reports on the news that so many thousands, millions perhaps, of jobs are likely to have robots replace humans, we all go "oh, no, that's terrible, where will those people work". it is rather the case, i feel, that we should be embracing this. robots are, i would suggest, unlikely to start stealing items of mail if they were designed, created and implemented to deliver post. robots would also presumably not go on strike at times of maximum inconvenience, such as Christmas.

yes, i am aware of the fact that "the majority" of staff in the postal service probably are decent, non-stealing types. that doesn't make it all ok and fine when things like this happen. saying that is like when you complain about something and get told "well no one else has complained". that you are the first to complain of something probably entitles you to a special badge or similar award, but stating that is the case in itself does not make the problem go away.

right, let me get a diary or calendar or perhaps dictionary out, see if i can't jolly well ascertain what exactly is going on with the greetings card which seem to be coming through the door. welcome, of course, as these cards of greetings most decidedly are.

be excellent to each other!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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