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"There's a Lot of Satisfaction in a Job Well Done"

Updated on April 26, 2015

An air of anticipation of “what next”

Now that I’ve retired it seems I have a lot more time to reflect on certain areas of my past. When I remember my whole Postal career, a time of nearly thirty-five years, I often recollect a close friend that has had a tremendous influence on my life since I first met him. He was a quiet man, never married, no more than a high school education if that. A content, love life to the fullest, patient, engaging, knowledgeable yet humorous man; I’ve made reference in earlier hubs to one Charles (Pepper) Smith. More affectionately known as just ‘Peppy’ to those of us that worked with him. He was a ‘card’ a ‘hoot’—I found out very early that the quiet atmosphere always present around the workroom floor could be said to be one of anticipation of “what next”. Everyone listened to hear the phrase or comment that would come on the spur of the moment from the eloquence of mind of none other than our beloved ‘Peppy’.

Cokes, saltine crackers and sliced Crown Bologna

I worked with Peppy daily when I first started with the United States Postal Service at Bluff City TN 37618, in June of 1973. He and I would arrive at the same time, until after my probationary period, and then he would come in sometimes thirty minutes later since he was senior to me would work straight through each day, but I had a split shift and had to work half a day in the mornings and ‘swing’ or leave for two or three hours then come back and work the window and close out the office in the afternoon. I didn’t mind this so much at first because it gave me exposure. Besides working the mail off and sorting it to the carriers in the mornings, we also worked the box section mail. It we got the mail up before 8:00 AM, one of us would go across the street to Thomas’ Store for cokes, saltine crackers and sliced Crown Bologna. The Postmaster said we deserved a little break if he, Peppy and I worked all the mail received that day to the box section and the five rural carriers for casing and delivery. That was our daily goal.

The postmaster just grinned and said, “he’s okay.”

Now it was during this working of the mail that Peppy or Pep for short was at his best. Usually all that could be heard was the swooshing of paper rubbing against paper as we worked handfuls of mail into the distribution cases for pickup on the other side by the carriers. So as the Postmaster and I worked off the letters Pep would work off the parcels and newspapers. It was while the carriers, the postmaster and I were sorting the mail that Peppy would let out, off the top of his head, “Wheeewy, this works killing me.” All the carriers would roar with laughter, knowing Peppy was not one to overexert himself. I thought he might be havin’ a spell or something at first, but the postmaster just grinned and said, “he’s okay.” If the radio happened to be on and a familiar song was playing, Pep would shout out, “What’s the name of that one, Herb?” And if Herb knew the title, he would tell Peppy while laughing. I guess you could say there was never a dull moment during the time we were all working the mail off each day. But my favorite remark of all that Peppy would make was after we had made our 8:00 deadline and we were all enjoying our crackers, bologna and Cokes, Pep would look me in the eye and say, “You know - There’s a lot of satisfaction in a job well done…”

© 2010 SamSonS


Submit a Comment

  • samsons1 profile imageAUTHOR


    7 years ago from Tennessee

    thanks Brett, always good to see you and I appreciate you looking around and making comments + the fine ratings...

  • Brett.Tesol profile image

    Brett Caulton 

    7 years ago from Asia

    Hi Samsons,

    Seems I'm a bit late to this one ... 7 months in fact! lol.

    But, as I only recently discovered your writings, I've ranked it Awesome and Up ... beautifully written and entertaining!

  • samsons1 profile imageAUTHOR


    7 years ago from Tennessee

    *thanks General, appreciate your rating and your visit...

    *and thank you Bro Dave, yes the Post Office was definitely an experience.


  • Dave Mathews profile image

    Dave Mathews 

    7 years ago from NORTH YORK,ONTARIO,CANADA

    samsons1: Ah postal work, been there done that, for twelve long years as a parcel post driver, until they privatized the department and sold it off to some courier company.

    It was like a home away from home.

    Brother Dave.

  • GeneralHowitzer profile image

    Gener Geminiano 

    7 years ago from Land of Salt, Philippines

    Great hub my friend... just rated it up man...

  • samsons1 profile imageAUTHOR


    7 years ago from Tennessee

    thanks lifegate for your comments...

  • lifegate profile image

    William Kovacic 

    7 years ago from Pleasant Gap, PA


    I clean a couple of Post Offices part-time so I can identify, at least in part with the system, etc. Thanks for sharing.

  • samsons1 profile imageAUTHOR


    7 years ago from Tennessee

    thanks my brother and I love you.


  • fred allen profile image

    fred allen 

    7 years ago from Myrtle Beach SC

    Out of the abundance of a man's heart, his mouth speaks. Your words are always kind. You never have a bad word to say about anybody. I love you, my brother!

  • samsons1 profile imageAUTHOR


    7 years ago from Tennessee

    *thanks dahoglund for sharing your reminisce and I agree with the 'unusual people' part; the numbers just seem to come to me, still remember many zips...

    *and thank you 50 my friend, do you think maybe God places some people in our paths just to see how we are going to react or receive them?


  • 50 Caliber profile image

    50 Caliber 

    7 years ago from Arizona

    Samsons, a fine tale of days past, I suppose we all had characters cross our paths and you did a vote up job on this one, God Bless 50

  • dahoglund profile image

    Don A. Hoglund 

    7 years ago from Wisconsin Rapids

    I worked for the Post Office in Minneapolis for a few months. I might have stayed but there was no way I could memorize the schemes required (I have a hard time remembering my phone number)Having bad blood circulation being a carrier wasn't feasible either. I did find a lot of interesting and unusual people there. Many college graduates, one former minister, a vet just out of Viet Nam

  • samsons1 profile imageAUTHOR


    7 years ago from Tennessee

    *thanks Judi for your kind remarks...

    *and thank you carolina for your thoughts...

  • carolina muscle profile image

    carolina muscle 

    7 years ago from Charlotte, North Carolina

    what a fun story!!!

  • Judicastro profile image


    7 years ago from birmingham, Alabama

    Hey Samson my friend! I particularly liked this one. Nothing like a man in uniform!! (-; Very fun hub, sure love Pep, we all need one in our lives to keep us light hearted. Hugs

  • samsons1 profile imageAUTHOR


    7 years ago from Tennessee

    *thanks bayoulady, for sharin' your reminisce and yes I remember the 6 oz Cokes (5c right?)

    *and thank you my dear brother, don't keep us waitin' so long next time.

    blessings to you both...

  • profile image


    7 years ago

    Hi Brother and I agree with DiamondRN 100 plus percent... love you Brother... opps you missed that one "No Stamp".


  • bayoulady profile image


    7 years ago from Northern Louisiana,USA

    Lol! Sounds like Peppy had no pep! cut story. Back in the day , before a multitude of fast food places appeared in this little village a favorite snack was sliced bogna and a moon pie. Add a big ole coke(6 oz back then..ha!) and you had a feast!

  • samsons1 profile imageAUTHOR


    7 years ago from Tennessee

    thanks DiamondRN for your comments.

    there's nothing on earth to compare to the WELL DONE you mentioned; I'm ready and waiting...

  • DiamondRN profile image

    Bob Diamond RPh 

    7 years ago from Charlotte, NC USA

    Imagine how good it is going to feel when God says,"Well done, good and faithful servant." -- Matthew 25:23


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