ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Are Postal Customers Preparing for the Trumpocalypse?

Updated on January 20, 2017
The Mailster was a three wheeled contraption designed to deal with growing mail volume in the late 50s.  My lunch wouldn't fit in one of these today.
The Mailster was a three wheeled contraption designed to deal with growing mail volume in the late 50s. My lunch wouldn't fit in one of these today. | Source

The Postal Tsunami Asks - Is It Retail Therapy, or Is Scared America in Nut Burying Mode?

Last Saturday, I pulled up in front of a house to deliver a Christmas sized stack of parcels. It was a beautiful day, what they call "mailman weather," just enough of an arctic nip in the air to keep you from sweating, but not enough to make you put on a jacket. The sky was brilliant blue, there were no ominous clouds threatening to drown out my mailman's parade, and it seemed like the very Earth had achieved the pinnacle of happiness. What could ruin it? What could put a bummer on my full tour time and a half day off, other than it was my day off and I was working?

As I stood there against the bumper of my LLV, scanning packages with the sunshine on my shoulders making me happy, a customer came storming out of the house, not so much to wash out my parade, but to give it a temporary rain delay.

"I want to get those packages from you before my husband sees them," she said. "He's been getting after me for spending so much lately."

She then went on to tell me a woeful tale about how the election of Donald Trump has sent her off on an Internet spending jag. "I don't know what your political opinions are..." she started, then went on to relate how drowning her sorrows in stuff is her only solace in the Trump hangover, a condition that has a lot of us wondering what the hell we did last night and how many we drank that made us wake up with this flabby, annoyingly chatty blonde in bed next to us, with some fairly nose-turning blonde-stained sheets to boot.

"Retail therapy," I said. She agreed, and carried her packages inside before hubby could catch her.

As I watched her depart to squirrel away the merchandise in some spouse-proof hidden cache, I had to wonder if this buying frenzy was really to soothe her sadness about the election of that querulous quarreler, quasi quisling from Queens, or if she is fulfilling the desires of some hidden function of our reptilian brain that we hurry up and bury all the acorns we can tuck away before some environmental calamity befalls us?

In other words, is America getting busy hedging its bets, stocking up the pantry and preparing for the worst, in the event that the worst-case scenario of this ultimate X-factor of Presidents turns into reality?

Source

Mexican Mayhem Spills Into San Diego

I don't want to get overly political in this forum. People don't read the Tsunami because they want to hear stump speeches. Every time I try a stump speech here I get stumped trying to figure out why nobody read it. I'm not going to take a side on this particular issue of Trump vs. non-Trump. I'm just wondering if subconscious stockpiling for the great post January 20th unknown is one reason why parcel volume is not significantly declining post Christmas. If so, what if it's not just Trump that triggers our caching instincts? Maybe America goes into hoarding mode every time the butt in the oval office chair changes.

There is certainly no data to prove or disprove this, no national surveys that say Americans are buying stuff online in droves because they are afraid the country is going down the toilet and they want to salvage whatever cyber-turds are available before it flushes. But I do have some admittedly anecdotal, unscientific data that demonstrates, though does not prove the trend that the parcels keep cranking out even though Santa has long since gone packing to the North Pole.

Between October 15 and December 24, 2016, the daily parcel volume on my route was 124. After Christmas, this number has decreased to only 115. In spite of my loving supervisor's maternal assurances that there is nothing to worry about, that Christmas is over and the mail is back to normal, I am still going home exhausted every day. Christmas came and went, but the back of my LLV is still stretched to the limits of its rusted metal seams every day.

Granted, this could be for several reasons. Here in San Diego, for instance, the revolution in Mexico over Pena Nieto's misguided policies is spilling across the border. My wife sent me out for tortillas the other night. I went to three stores, and I only saw three or four packets of those mini tortillas that look like 80s vintage floppy disks pressed out of corn. The next night, she sent me out for a roasted chicken. I went to three stores, but I could not find so much as a single anorexic Cornish hen in any store.

Here in the South Bay region of San Diego County, tortillas grow on trees for the picking, and we roost with roasted chickens. Since the economic turmoil in Mexico, however, Mexican people have been crossing the border in droves to buy gasoline and foodstuffs. Fancy this, but such is the bad state of affairs in Mexico that our lousy machine-made gringo tortillas are preferable to the delicious, hand tossed, homemade Mexican variety. It is cheaper for Mexican people with the wherewithal to sit for hours in their cars at the International border, with the sole objective of crossing over to buy these wafers of machined maize so insipid a self-respecting hog would turn its snout at them. That's what it has come to.

Here in southern San Diego, the reason why our parcel volume is regularly high, even though our neighborhoods teeter on the brink of ghetto, is because these Mexican neighbors of ours use relatives in the US to order stuff online. The Mexican mail system is not too reliable, to say the least. Therefore, perhaps another reason why our parcels have not declined, have not meekly surrendered to their post-Xmas destiny, is because people in Tijuana have been stocking up, out of fear of having to go off the grid in the aftermath of economic upheaval.

Or it could be a combination of several factors, including this, and also fears of the impending Trumpocalypse. Then again, maybe folks are just getting a late start on spending their Xmas gift cards. Nobody knows, it's just interesting food for thought, much more tasty than those American made, mass produced tortillas that are so heavily rationed here now.

What are your thoughts? Are the post-Christmas parcels holding steady in your neck of the woods? Please share in the comments below.

Are Postal Customers emptying the greenbacks from their pockets in a subconscious hedge against disaster?
Are Postal Customers emptying the greenbacks from their pockets in a subconscious hedge against disaster? | Source

Other Troubling Tsunami Surges

  • By the time you read this, Donald Trump will just barely be sworn in. Even so, anti-postal forces have already sprung into action, taking his election as a sign to resume their suspended attacks on Postal workers. Anti-postal legislation, probably drafted and held in cryogenic stasis for a more favorable legislative environment, is now eagerly being defrosted. One of these measures is a bill that will eliminate union representation for new postal workers.
  • Representative Jason Chaffetz, the Chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform who took the position vacated by the evil Darrell Issa and then spent his first few days in the post trying to reassure us by hanging folksy photos of letter carriers in the committee chambers, is now revealing himself to be just another Issa-incarnation, making dangerous and disturbing proclamations about Postal reform. Trump seems to have emboldened these postal-dismembering wolves who were sent skulking into the shadows after they lost the battle over Saturday delivery and Staples. Is their ravenous and slobbering reemergence wishful thinking, or will Trump truly release these anti-postal hounds after he takes the oath?
  • On a positive note, postal sheep trembling in their fold from the howling shadows on the fringes of the meadow have a champion. Congresswoman Susan Davis of San Diego has introduced a resolution to protect door delivery of mail.
  • Ominous signs on the horizon indeed, but not without hope of happy weather ahead. Is it time to hoard, hide, or sing Hail to the Chief? Happy Postal tidings from the Tsunami, anchored off the coast of soggy San Diego, always ready to scour the shoreline of falsehoods and injustice.

On the left is Susan Davis, the lovely Postal-friendly legislator from San Diego.  On the right is Jason Chaffetz, perhaps just an evil Issa clone after all?
On the left is Susan Davis, the lovely Postal-friendly legislator from San Diego. On the right is Jason Chaffetz, perhaps just an evil Issa clone after all? | Source

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 4 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      First let me say this about that; I love Susan Davis. I go to her events and even volunteered as the only republican on her yard sign campaign. But let it be known she did nothing to stop this hurricane that came from your neighbor and destroyed mine mere minutes ago.

      To be honest Mel, I really do not care if my men and women in blue do an efficient job of delivering the mail. To me they are like Yellowstone, Grand Canyon and Mt. Rushmore. I really do not give a good damn how much it costs, I want to preserve this icon of America. I see the LLV and gather my son to meet our lady as mom did with me to meet our immigrant mailman for 23 years. The thought of not giving them a Christmas present has never crossed my mind.

      Yes we are guilty of getting the stuff on line and shipping it to Vietnam. I stand convicted.

      Mel I trust that my elected officials will do what it takes to get elected again. And I do not believe that screwing MY Postal Service would work toward that end.

    • simplehappylife profile image

      SA Williams 4 months ago from Earth

      I loved this Mel :) Hilarious and kind of ironic to me.

      Seeing that a large majority of the people that put him in office are "preppers" and "doomsday" anticipators. That's the first thing that came to my thinking :)

      I think people should just relax, we'll be alright. We always are, in the end :)

      Thanks for the laugh :) Great Hub :)

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 4 months ago from San Diego California

      Eric, sitting here cozy in a Starbucks on top of one of the few hills in Chula Vista, I was getting a little worried as I observed the treetops outside nearly touching their toes. I began to feel guilty about running off and leaving my wife alone with 6 queen palms that she says were practically doubled over. To my relief, they are still standing.

      Perhaps humility should stop me from agreeing with you, but we mailmen are icons, aren't we? My customers treat me like family, and they worry over my health when I am absent. We are fixtures of the American neighborhood, statues in stone that shouldn't be blown up like the Taliban did to those Buddhas in Afghanistan a few years back.

      Susan Davis is sort of a hot babe, ain't she? I feel comfortable making that kind of mysogynistic statement now that Trump is Prez. But I believe Juan Vargas is our guy over here across the lake now that glad-handing Bobby Filner checked out. Too bad, we need eye candy something terrible over here. Maybe she could have charmed back the storm.

      Thanks for reading, Buddy.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 4 months ago from San Diego California

      Simplehappylife, I am thrilled when non-posties read my postal stuff and seem to enjoy it. I am glad I could make you crack a smile for awhile. I believe that America will stay the course no matter what captain is at the helm, but it is our job as writers to keep that captain honest and with his eyes open for icebergs ahead. Thank you so much for reading.

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 4 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Mel, I just have to say that you are one of the finest authors in your genre. Maybe when I figure what your genre is I might re-evaluate.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 4 months ago from San Diego California

      Like you, my preacher man friend, I defy genre. I hate genre. When people ask me, do you like the science-fiction genre, I answer "If it's good." Do you like the horror genre, they ask, and I say "if it's good." Genre is a horrible pigeon hole to crawl into, because you can't get back out. If you crawl down into that genre pigeon hole, they shut the lid. No air holes in that lid, either. Stay dry.

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 4 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      This is so funny Mel. I actually used the term Eric's Sunday Sermon: to make a point of our assumptions and narrow definitions of label/words. Sticks and Stones Will Break my Bones but really words will turn me into stone. Label your mom, mom. But do not go any further.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 4 months ago from San Diego California

      Call it a sermon, and every self-appointed prophet drops by to stone you, but not in the good Peyote bud way.

    • RoadMonkey profile image

      RoadMonkey 4 months ago

      We have a great postman here in our neck of the woods. He stops for a chat and we know our letters and parcels are safe.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 4 months ago from San Diego California

      RoadMonkey, America needs guys and gals like that. Letter carriers take a sense of ownership over the neighborhoods they serve. Thanks for reading!

    • profile image

      Pat Mills 4 months ago from East Chicago, Indiana

      I don't think it's time to hoard, hide, or sing Hail To The Chief. I never try to put any undue hardship on my postal carrier, but sometimes I just want things that the USPS has to deliver. I don't want Trump to keep certain promises - especially building a US-Mexico wall, especially for those Mexicans who find shopping here more affordable. I also don't think anyone wants to see a Trump administration filled will clueless billionaires and associates who don't understand the needs of others. I'm not sure Mr. Trump will even keep his promise to be a President for all of the people. What chief executive won't make some working class Americans and others feel disenfranchised? I don't see that coming from a man who lost the popular vote by three million.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 4 months ago from Olympia, WA

      I think the first 100 days of this administration are going to be fascinating. I don't necessarily mean that in a good way, but from a historic and societal viewpoint, they will be fascinating. Change requires pain...I have always believed that...and I think, as a nation, we are about to experience pain.

    • Larry Rankin profile image

      Larry Rankin 4 months ago from Oklahoma

      It's not a new phenomenon, Mel. When people are scared or nervous they buy more. Ironically, it's usually the opposite reaction that is needed for survival.

      You always have an interesting take.

    • Jennifer Mugrage profile image

      Jennifer Mugrage 4 months ago from Columbus, Ohio

      Great article! Funny, with maybe a grain of truth.

      It's nice to see how a postal carrier throws his two cents in to the interest group panic frenzy. I love the cryogenically frozen legislation.

      I'm sorry to hear what our Mexican friends are going through.

      Finally, there might be something to your thesis. I'm a conservative who did not vote for Trump. I've been feeling we ought to be at least a little bit prepared for a possible apocalypse-like disaster since well before the election. Trump's presidency puts us in danger of certain disasters; Clinton's would have put us in danger of others. Also, there are "tsunamis" that could happen whoever was at the helm, and which perhaps no leader could cause or avert. As some conservatives have said before now, welcome, my liberal friends, to the land of feeling disenfranchised and deeply worried about the future! But don't panic too badly ... some us have been here a while, and we'll show you the ropes. Whether it's a Trump fascist state, a Leftist totalitarian state, a power grid failure, a nuclear attack by Iran, or (God forbid) widespread riots whipped up by the media, we are still going to need to order lots of stuff off of Amazon to prepare for it.

    • Dana Tate profile image

      Dana Tate 4 months ago from LOS ANGELES

      I believe people are running scared. The thing with Trump is, he is so honest about who he is and, how he thinks, that you can see him; unlike other politicians who lie through their teeth and then you find out the hard way that they're liars and the truth isn't in them.

      Did you see the inauguration where Trump blasted government for failing America, making promise's and not keeping them, and celebrating victories while the people suffered? I'm sure congress was not happy, but what do you expect, its Trump!

      I think it's funny everyone is running scared and worried over this man who appears as the savior to some and the anti-Christ to others. It makes me wonder, how did he ever get into office anyway.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 4 months ago from San Diego California

      He's making reassuring statements now, Mills, but we'll see what happens when the rubber hits the road come Monday. I really appreciate you checking in during what could be the best of times or the worst of times.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 4 months ago from San Diego California

      I think America has felt its share of pain, Bill. The economists tell us the economy is cranking, but I know people working 80 hours a week, some working 3 jobs to make it work. That is not sustainable for anyone. If Trump fulfills only one promise, I want him to bring back living wage jobs to America. Thanks for reading.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 4 months ago from San Diego California

      Thank you Larry. At least we will have a lot to rant about here on hub pages for a while. I appreciate you dropping in.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 4 months ago from San Diego California

      You are absolutely correct Jennifer that the American working man takes it from the right and the left. To me they are two sides of the same coin, a fraud perpetrated to convince us we have a functioning democracy.

      I was happy on election night that Hilary lost, not because I like Trump, but because she and her corrupt cronies deserved to lose. But the deeper we get into the Trump hangover, the more I wonder if the partying was premature. This stuff with Russia worries me. Thanks for reading.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 4 months ago from San Diego California

      How did he get into office, Dana? I think he got into office because people are tired of the status quo. As for his honesty, I think this Russian affair shows he might have some incontinent skeletons in his own closet. We will soon find out. Thanks for dropping in.

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 4 months ago from British Columbia, Canada

      This is an interesting hub, as always, Mel. There is a lot that worries me about Trump, especially since some of his policies may affect more than just the United States. We'll have to see how things go.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 4 months ago from San Diego California

      Canada and the US are kind of joined at the hip, Linda. Here's hoping his more frightening proclamations don't come true. I appreciate you dropping in!

    • grand old lady profile image

      Mona Sabalones Gonzalez 3 months ago from Philippines

      Hi Mel, I love your humor, even as you are making political commentary, and wondering about the future of postal workers and your beautiful country. I love Mark Twain and I love reading your articles, Mel. Frankly, we in the Philippines have a rather disagreeable president (euphemistically speaking) but Trump is getting all the headlines. I have worried about a war with China and am thankful that Trump has reneged and chosen to honor the one china policy. I personally think the policy stinks, but who wants a war? Especially as it will be a war by proxy, and our beautiful country will be in the middle of it. I am so proud of how Americans take to the streets and the media is vigilant because democracy involves checks and balances, and I am beginning to believe that the democratic system is far stronger than Trump can ever hope to be.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 3 months ago from San Diego California

      Your President is getting a little buzz over here also, Mona, particularly because people are calling him the Filipino Trump. Both of these men seem rather dictatorial in their approach, and I hope this does not affect the free exchange of ideas we enjoy here and in other forums. Trump's more avid followers are somewhat like brown-shirts in their fanatical devotion to their leader, and their intolerance to criticism about him.

      I really appreciate your nice comments. One branch of my family started out in Missouri, so maybe I got a touch of Mark Twain from there. He was a big advocate of the Filipinos, by the way. Thanks for reading.

    • lawrence01 profile image

      Lawrence Hebb 3 months ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      Mel

      Does that mean the 'wall' isn't so much about keeping law abiding Mexicans out as protecting the rights of working class Americans to enjoy tasteless, bland tortillas?:-)

      I've never been in a union, so I can't comment there but the one thing that's anathema to big corporations is 'collective bargaining' don't let them take that from you!

      Blessings

      Lawrence

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 3 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Mel, I just love this guy Lawrence, he would fit right in in my little Valley of the Dolls

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 3 months ago from San Diego California

      If you started digging a hole in your back yard in the Sprung Valley, Eric, we could smuggle in Lawrence guy from down in New Zealand, then he wouldn't have to suffer the indignity of tunneling under the wall. Start digging.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 3 months ago from San Diego California

      Lawrence, I am surprised you Kiwi bus drivers aren't unioned up. Our bus drivers over here are unionized. Now, that doesn't mean the Union does much for them, certain labor organizations are there to serve themselves, not their dues paying members. Nonetheless, you are absolutely correct that labor needs a voice. Thanks for reading buddy.

    • lawrence01 profile image

      Lawrence Hebb 3 months ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      Mel

      Years ago you couldn't get a job unless you were in the union! That was in the seventies and eighties, then we followed Britain's lead (I was still in Britain back then) and law was passed saying you couldn't fire someone for choosing not to be in a union.

      Union membership plummeted overnight, but looking back, it wasn't all bad in the unions, we probably threw out 'the baby with the bathwater'

      Our company does have union members, but by law non union members have to get the same treatment, the snag is everyone is on individual contracts, companies can choose who they give pay rises to!

      That's why I said what I did!

      Lawrence

      By the way, I won't need to start tunneling, your President says both Britain and New Zealand "are ok" so he'd let me in ;-)

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 3 months ago from San Diego California

      Anytime you want to come over, Lawrence, you're okay by me. California is also a "right to work" state. People don't have to join the Union, but they get the same rights and wages as non-members. Thanks for tunneling over with a great comment.

    Click to Rate This Article