If you cannot deal with live animals, human body parts, being watched constantly, and boisterous people, then stay away from this place!
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"This was the best money I spent all week! And I know it's all true!"
- South Jersey Postal Worker
"I love the loud lady screaming on the fork lift!"
- Journalism Professor
Here is an excerpt of Goin' Postal: True Stories of a U.S. Postal Worker:
Jessica's second day started out normally until she saw a black woman driving a forklift, blasting the horn and screaming, “All you white devils must die! The Lord told me that your day is coming soon!” Jessica was scared to death. She felt her pulse start to race, her respiration increased, and she tried to devise a way to stay out of this woman's way. Everyone knows the term “going postal” and she did not want to be anywhere near someone who was going to start shooting! She made sure that she steered clear of this woman as much as possible, forming a wall around herself made of containers called APCs. Each APC was about six foot and on wheels. Jessica continued over the next few days to hide from the woman while surrounded by these APCs, ducking her head down every time she saw the crazy woman drive by. One day however, the black woman purposely ran her forklift into one of these containers, breaking Jessica's wall of fortitude, and screamed, “Gotcha!”
“Hello” Jessica said very timidly, not knowing what to expect. Perhaps if I am quiet she will not notice my blue-eyed blonde, very white devilish complexion that turns into a lobster in the sun!
She seemed startled herself, “Oh I'm sorry, I thought you were Erica. Do you know where she is?”
Thankfully, she was looking for Jessica's co-worker, “Sorry, she is not scheduled today. She will be in tomorrow.” Jessica hoped her politeness would keep the woman from trying to attack this “white devil”. The woman just thanked Jessica, and went on her way. She wondered if the woman had just had a bad day when Jessica first saw her screaming---either that or the woman was bipolar. Wow... dodged a bullet on that one! Maybe even literally. Jessica found out later that her name was Terry, and she was actually a very nice person---just loud.
There were plenty of loud people who worked there, some were to be taken seriously, and others not so seriously. Part of the problem with being new in any environment is the lack of knowledge of correct procedures. Another problem is that with so many different people working in one environment, it is nearly impossible to satisfy everyone. Jessica had to learn this the hard way. A soft spoken man in his sixties walked Jessica around showing her from where to get mail once she was finished processing the mail she had. "When you finish sorting the mail you have, go to that section across the aisle and get a full container of mail to bring back with you. Whenever you take a full container, please replace it with an empty one. Not only does this save the person in that section time, but that person will respect and appreciate you for your consideration." Sounds simple. Take a full container, and give them an empty so that they can fill it again.
An hour later, Jessica finished her mail, and did what she was told. She pulled an empty container across the aisle, took her full container of mail, then went back to sorting her mail. Ten minutes later she heard the loud clang of metal, as well as yelling that was very deep and angry. The voice was coming closer to her, "Who the hell keeps bringing these empty containers over here? Was it you? Does it look like I need anymore freaking containers? I work with the world's biggest idiot who has 40 freaking containers here! I don't need another container until the end of the freaking millennium thanks to him! If you EVER bring me another freaking container, I will push all 40 of my containers into your section so that YOU cannot walk in your section the way I can't!" This man was literally throwing these rolling containers into others. His hands were flapping around in the air, his face got really red, and he was so incredibly mad that he was perspiring. As veins bulged from his temples, he screamed, "That's it! I need a freaking beer!" The man then walked away.
When Terry the forklift driver heard the commotion, she approached the confused Jessica, "Don't worry honey, he's crazy. Everyone knows that. He is one of the ones at the top of the list. Just try to avoid him."
Now even more confused, Jessica asked, "He's on the list? What list?"
"You know, the list of people in the building most likely to go crazy and shoot up the place. One day, he will probably go off, so in the mean time, try to be on his good side--- just in case." Terry said this with such a serious look that Jessica was unsure whether it was a joke, or real.
Jessica prodded, "Are you serious? You all actually have a list of likely shooters?" Jessica's eyes started scanning the area looking at the faces of other employees, wondering who else might be on the list, or just how many "crazies" were in the building.
"Jess darling, not only is there a list, but there is a betting pool guessing who will be the first one to go crazy, in what part of the building, and what method they will use. I have $100 on a supervisor named Mark, on the platform, with a bomb. You need to talk to Jose if you want to get in on it." After that, Terry drove away on her forklift, and Jessica was praying the rest of the day would go by without incident.