Sunday, May 06, 2007
Living in DC
I got "you need to" at the post office the other afternoon. Curiously, the postal employee was sincerely trying to help me.
I was waiting in line, holding an envelope along with a green "delivery confirmation" sticker.
"You need to send that priority mail," he said.
"OK," I said. "I'll do that."
He then said something else that I didn't understand. Since I didn't understand it, it made me a bit cranky.
"OK, I'll send it priority mail," I said. "What else do I need to do?"
"I can do it. Come over here."
And he walked off. So, I followed, to another, smaller service counter.
The employee took my envelope and the green sticker, placed the envelope in a clear-front priority mail enveloped, processed the sticker, took my money and stapled the receipt to my copy of the sticker.
He wasn't being mean or ornery. Nothing like that. He had come out from behind his counter and was trying to get the line of waiting customers moving. A few minutes before our exchange, he directed some instructions to the customers. "If any of you have to buy stamps," he said, "you can do that at one of the machines."
Nobody moved, probably because we all had some transaction that needed a live person.
But the postal worker was definitely trying to help us out. The trouble is, he was blinded by getting the postal processes right. He approached me with a solution by telling me the problem. But kudos to him for stepping out and offering to help!
Once I recognized this, I become much less cranky and almost pleasant.