Monday, 25 November 2013


There's a scruffy old man standing in his doorway beckoning to me and shouting. I'm huffing and puffing on the other side of the estate, trying to find my way in this rat's maze of 70s new build.
Is he wishing me the usual 'good morning' or the always amusing 'If it's bills I don't want 'em!' (I gave Bill's his earlier so fuck you to Hell).  I get closer, he's ragged and very beardy - angry if anything. In  fact he's yelling 'YER A CUNT!' at me. Repeatedly. He's quite agitated and spitting wildly by this point.  Wearily I sigh inwardly and push on by. Luckily he's no mail. Well, none that he's getting off ME.  So much for old people being warm and friendly. In fact I recognize the gentleman from the local bus.

Wednesday, 12 January 2011

slivers of joy

  "Did you post this through my door just now?"
The woman is standing before me in her slippers brandishing a grey Royal Mail 'insufficient postage' card.  I'm taking a much needed piss behind a tree in what I thought to be a deserted patch of muddy park/woodland.  Should I shake hands?  It's a rhetorical question.  Who else in this shaded glade posts mail through doors?  I'm mid flow so resist and fess up to posting the offending item.  It's my job.  I'm a bit pissed off (literally)  to say the least. 
  "Have you read it?" I enquire.

Tuesday, 4 January 2011

The storm after the other storm

There are a surprisingly large number of Christmas cards in today's mail.  People post earlier and earlier these days.  Its almost 360 days off...oh wait, it's postmarked the 11th of December 2010.  First class.  Hmmm. It doesn't matter anyway, they're not going far.  I'm spending today delivering yesterday's mail that was left and a smidgen of the day before.  My panda-eyed line manager has just asked me to stack today's eight trays of mail, four bundles of Sky Mags and three(!) packet bags neatly under my bench.  He emphasised the 'neatly' as if we'd otherwise get a bad name.  TNT's vast mountains of backlogged mail are a right mess I can tell you.  So I stack it all out of sight.
We're in the third phase of the 'revision' now.  Back in September Royal Mail introduced the second phase which entailed a major reworking of all walks so we walk more, carry more and in the same length of time.  Drivers we're given less time and more work.  It all related to the Royal Mail mantra of 'mail volumes are falling' so fuck you.  Reality disputes this of course.  So this unprecedented chaos is the result.  A humongous ever growing fucking backlog of mail and no one to sort and/or deliver it.  Every day and there's a new 'plan'.  Leave this, sort this, clear this.  Just make sure it's neat.

Thursday, 15 July 2010

a short length of hose

I'm definitely not in Kansas anymore.  Here the house numbers are clumsily spray-painted onto the houses.  The privet hedges are untamed and are swallowing up the (already fucked) gates, entrances, the lot.  When I finally do find the rusty latch and force my way through the undergrowth, I have to negotiate a path through the piles of children's toys and 'Farmfoods' carrier bags stuffed full of soil (?).  I exit this particular close soaking wet (the privet tends to hold a lot of surface water which brushes easily onto me) and with scratched hands.  Today I encountered Lancaster's only front door that opens outward, a painful experience.  There are also a surprisingly large number of letterboxes installed upside down.   They tend to remove that thin, sensitive layer of skin just below your fingernails.  Mans stupidity to man.

Wednesday, 30 June 2010

lactose intolerant

The sun has many advantages such as supporting life, creating shadows etc but it can also become tiresome after 4 long hours under it's oppressive glare.  I'm covered in barriers: cheap sun cream; sunglasses; rather fetching hat; clothes, but they tend to make me perspire even more.  It doesn't help that I'm delivering to several, shall we say 'shit', blocks of flats with no lifts and (understandably) sealed windows.  These asbestos filled boxes bake in the morning sun, concentrating heat and any lingering odours on their stairwells for me to discover.  One stairwell in particular was covered in a fruity yogurt last week so the strawberry overtures were particularly intense.  Today I was getting a hoary, putrid stench of rancid milk and overripe vomit.  There were bass notes of funky dog and stale old person but nothing too toxic.

Monday, 21 June 2010

snap fuck

The office radio is broken which means we're forced to hear our own voices. It makes the mornings rather long though, having to listen to the kaleidoscopic sounds of breaking wind, snapping bands (followed by a swift 'FUCK!!!') and extra loud football gumph.
Makes a change from Jam
ie Fucking Theakston informing me of a 'snarl up on the M25'. Yeah, cheers Jimmy lad, I'll avoid it. By 300 miles. The tuning of the rad
io's a bit of a free for all and it usually rests on Theakston and co. for some unknown reason. I liked the brief moment some wag tuned it to 'birdsong FM' and an ethereal calm descended on the office. Production, moral: all rose in those blissful 5 minutes.

Monday, 7 June 2010

dog tired

I may bang on about dogs but I'm truly amazed at the sheer number of dogs I meet, on a daily basis, that see me as dinner. Years ago, pre-this job, I liked dogs. Now I've developed a true fear of any type of dog, no matter how waggy it's tail, no matter how indignant the owner that it's a 'softy really'.
Every day I've felt a cold-mad rush of fear/adrenaline as a dog flies out of nowhere to chew on my bones. My first reaction is to hide behind my bag as this is dispensable (unlike my limbs) and heavy. Then I make for the exit. Sometimes there is no exit.

Friday, 28 May 2010

release me, I'm evil

release me, I'm evil
Originally uploaded by tommy hoskins
Ho ho..NO. It's Spring you evil bastards, no sane person needs a Christmas catalogue just yet, especially such shoulder-crushingly heavy ones. But since when has sanity meant anything? For two days this week (that's MAY) I had to look at Santa's jolly red face (mine was red but not so jolly) as the Spring sunshine burned down on my nerve torn back.

Monday, 24 May 2010

donkey dog

'Let me show what I do with these' my colleague says.
He then rips off the bright red Recorded label and stuffs the, now ordinary, packet through the letterbox.
'But don't let me teach you my bad habits' he cackles.
I'm being trained. i.e. being shown the ropes by a cynical, bitter and twisted old bastard. It's Royal Mail policy.
Trained on a 'rural' (webbed hands) walk as the frame doesn't correspond in any way whatsoever with reality, and the reality is pretty grim. My head is hurting. I've spent the past hour trying to follow my 'trainer' but he's racing ahead, spouting this and that. All the roads are merging into one semi-detached mush and I'm lost.