USPS Employees Explain What's Really Happening At Their Branch Locations
The delay in Americans receiving their online orders is the result of the USPS being hit hard from the current health crisis.
There are a variety of factors for long-overdue deliveries – including branches being short-staffed, reduced shift hours, and post office employees admittedly not reporting to work for fear of potentially exposing themselves to the viral pathogen from coworkers refusing to wear proper face coverings.
And despite the Postmaster General calling for his much scrutinized "restructuring" strategy – which affects postal workers from efficiently delivering your mail – they are doing their best to get your parcels delivered to you on time.
Wondering about the frantic conditions these dedicated federal government employees must be experiencing, Redditor Fridayrules asked:
"USPS employees, what madness is happening at your place of employment currently?"
More Staff, Less Hours
"I am an actual USPS employee."
"My office is fairly small and well run, so we are lucky. However, we have several employees (clerks and carriers) who are out with [the virus]. No one is allowed to do overtime anymore. I am sure you can see the problem with this."
"One solution would be to hire more staff, but there are rules about how many employees of each type and subtype is allowed in each office. After a certain amount of hours lost, the office is allowed to hire temporary employees for a limited time. This is after the damage has been done, and employees are already stressed. Then, a temp employee come in, and has to learn the rules, systems, routes, etc., depending on their position. It takes a month or two for a temp employee to become reasonably competent, and then their contract is up soon after."
"I have friends that work in a much larger major hub post office near us, and they are still somehow being forced to work 60+ hours each week. I know of two new PSEs (basically parcel sorting monkeys) that have quit within two weeks of hiring at that big post office because they were not prepared for the crazy hours and the stress of working 1am to 1:30 pm."
"We get communications from the new Postmaster General fairly regularly. The last one touted our increase in start times for carriers and a decrease in return trips. Sounds good, right? No, this means carriers are being pushed out the door before they are ready, and that they are not being allowed to come back to pick up another load because of the new overtime rules for most offices. And that's why your parcel is late.
I love my job (for real, it's a great job), but DeJoy is making this difficult for all of us.
Who knows, maybe his changes will end up streamlining our business? I'm skeptical, at best.
I hope you all know that most USPS employees want you to get your mail on time, and we are still trying to help you get your stuff on time whenever possible and save you money when we can."
Stacks Of Mail
"My stepdad is a USPS employee and they're cutting everyones overtime despite the fact that mail is just piling up."
"Actual USPS employee, here. EAS-17 working in a level-22 office with 56 city and 21 rural routes. Postmaster is PCES-level. In other words, I supervise a large station in a major city where the Postmaster runs over 20 post offices."
"Last summer this office was a ghost town at 1700, even on Mondays. Tonight my last carrier came in at 1845. Saturday one year ago, parcel volume was a little under 3900. Tonight it was 8751. Our base hours are 412.53, today we earned 435.36 but probably hit 455. DOIS is only allowing 60 seconds per parcel, but since all these apartment offices are closed due to C19, everything gets run to the door. Complaints and inquiries are insane, too - mail delays and packages dropped at doors means a lot of angry customers."
"All in all, right now I wish I'd stayed a mail handler. Stations are madhouses. But the carriers are toughing it out, generally keep it on an even keel, and everyone has each other's backs for the most part. This station has kept its reputation as a big family, so it hasn't become ugly. Just difficult."
"In the District that I work in, they're removing one of our DBCS machines the one that sorts the letter mail. The PMG has also divided the Postal Service into 3 separate units, Delivery and retail, sorting units, and An analytical branch to help with logistics to make the service more profitable. Overtime is being cut and parcels are just being delayed. New 'temporary' surveys added by the PMG to track the mail volumes. And there are rumors floating around talking about every Area is going to be dismissed."
"No One Is Happy"
"We currently have over 11 full beamers (big metal cages that hold a lot of packages) full of first class packages including medicine and anything people have tried to send expecting 2 day shipping. Overtime isn't approved and they demand we do Amazon first so we're getting more and more backed up with first class and priority mail packages. It's getting worse every day.
"No one is wearing masks to deliver or in the office, we've have 3 cases of covid, no sanitization, and people have been asked to work while they wait on their covid tests even if they have symptoms. A few people are out for fear of covid and using their vacation or sick leave so no one else can get a day off, and we're calling in workers from other offices to assist, putting their offices into a frenzy making them short handed."
"No one is happy. Everyone is complaining, tempers are rising, some are threatening to walk out and quit, but they show up the next day anyway bc its the best paying job with no college degree in this area."
"The management sucks, the supervisors are awful. They're complaining about all of the carriers because we're falling behind even though package volume has gone up 80% for our office since Covid hit hard in March."
"Customers are complaining about us "being late" even though our daily cut off time is 7 pm, but if we're not at their house at the time they normally expect during non pandemic and new PMG times, we're 'late' to them."
"I'm expecting no Christmas tips this year, that's for sure."
The Amazon Problem
"Amazon is definitely a thorn in my side right now, and I personally prefer seeing orders from smaller, locally owned companies, but at this point Amazon is just synonymous with 'ordering online' so I dont think that's going to stop unless the company completely goes under. And I dont think that will happen anytime soon."
"The biggest problem is the direction coming from the new post master general, he's removing mail sorting equipment, some mail drop off blue boxes, and limiting overtime. So less mail sorting machines and reduced overtime means later trucks from plants, which means shorter time for package sorters to go through the cages and sort, and because Amazon is always our priority, the handlers just don't have enough time before our new 9 am cutoff to get to the regular packages."
"Simply not shopping at Amazon at this point wouldn't necessarily fix anything. I'm curious how much worse it's going to get since Amazon just laid off some of their contract drivers. If that extra workload comes to us then it may get even worse."
"There's just so much to fix with the USPS and the new rules are making it so much worse."
"I am an usps carrier. Our latest thing that affects us personally is they are reducing our cases (these are tall shelves that have every address on our route in order for the mail that we need to manually sort) from 2 cases to one to 'save space' the best way that I can explain this is: you have a normal 2 drawer file cabinet, not jam packed full but each drawer is 1/2 to 3/4 full. Now combine both drawers into 1. I will remind you that you need to fill it up every morning in order, sometimes stuffing things in to fit, then remove it in order to do the rest of your job."
"The best part is the second case was also acting like a barrier from [the virus] from coworkers. Now they are going to remove it and replace it with plexiglass."
People Break Down 'The Incident' That Happened At Their High School
A deleted Reddit user asked: 'What was “the incident” at your high school?'
Nothing has more impact on our lives than the moments of adolescence.
Everything seems to be high stakes–especially in high school–where short-term goals like being popular and voted best-looking are the coveted status.
And when teens fall short of expectations, struggle with academics, and feel like breakups are the end of the world, they don't have the wisdom yet to know things eventually get better.
It's no wonder many successful TV series like 90210 feature teens. There's plenty of drama to entertain audiences who've either been there or are going through it themselves and find many of the plotlines are relatable.
But sometimes, there are plenty of unimaginable and horrific incidents that take place and are forever ingrained as part of the high school experience.
Curious to hear from strangers online about their teenage years, an anonymous Redditor asked:
"What was 'the incident' at your high school?"
Major school incidences ranged from the bizarre to tragedy.
Prank Gone Wrong
"Senior prank, someone dumped a few hundred pounds of flour and yeast into the school indoor pool, in hopes of turning it into a giant glob of dough (I guess). It didn’t work, just caused about 100K damage to plumbing, pumps, filters, etc. Prankster never caught."
"In high school Two kids both named Logan. Both last names were very similar. One was popular and the other was not. Unpopular Logan was drunk and ran across a road in the middle of the night and was killed by a semi-truck."
"The next day the principal announced that popular Logan had died. Popular Logan was late for school."
"Everyone was very sad. Then popular Logan showed up and all school rejoiced that unpopular Logan was the one who died. Was f'ked up."
"A sophomore (my classmate) dropped unconscious in gym class and was rushed to the hospital. 3 days later they took him off life support and he died from a brain aneurysm."
"Edit to add: his funeral was held in the high school gym and damn near everyone went. Never in my life did I think I’d attend a funeral AT school."
In The Nick Of Time
"A friend of mine in high school had a brain aneurysm, also as a sophomore. He'd been complaining for a few days about sudden, brief, very intense headaches. He was on the JV football team and went to play a game. Took a hard tackle and the aneurysm ruptured."
"That actually turned out to be the luckiest possible time for it to happen, because the school always had an ambulance on call at the side of the field during football games, so he was in the hands of EMTs within a minute of people realizing something was wrong. He was rushed to the hospital, they removed part of his skull to reduce the pressure on his brain and he spent a week or two in an induced coma. But in an absolute damn miracle, he made about as complete of a recovery as one can from that kind of injury; the only long-term effect was some very minor loss of muscle control in the left side of his face, so his smile was a little crooked."
"That was back in 2000."
"He just died three weeks ago from an accidental drug overdose."
"A kid came to school with a machete and tree saw and slashed 7 students the day before Thanksgiving break."
"And a girl fell through the gym’s acoustic ceiling tiles and had to wear a halo."
Incidences were not limited to just the students.
"A science teacher was beaten, chased and fatally set on fire by her husband who then shot himself."
"A teacher at the school I attended was being chased by her abusive husband. She drove to a police station with him following and tried to go inside but the doors were locked (it was some holiday). He shot her dead there and drove off. After that they made a rule to always have someone on staff and the doors unlocked."
There's no avoiding the brutal shaming that accompanies the high school experience.
Special Gym Class
"We had so many pregnant teen girls that they had their own gym class."
"A friend of mine who had a fake leg— he had a solid metal rod from mid thigh to mid calf from childhood leukemia so he couldn’t bend at the knee, was in the same class. Just this one poor guy and 30 pregnant 16 year olds."
"I was a teenager in the late 90s and grew up in the southeastern United States. It was a suburban area where a ton of people (still) identify as Evangelical Christians, it’s also called the Bible Belt. The required sex education classes didn’t teach anything but 'Just Say No' so there were girls who thought jumping up and down would prevent pregnancy. Not kidding. These were really sheltered girls who would attend Purity Dances, so it was quite a scandal that so many were pregnant at the same time. Most of the baby daddies were just dumb teenage boys who didn’t know the facts of life."
"Remember that there was no internet at this point so it’s not like teens could get information on their own especially if they were from a super religious background. A girl on my street was 'sent away' to live with an aunt when she got pregnant."
"Also, the pregnant girl gym class was technically for the physically disabled kids, hence why my friend was the lone guy in the class."
"His leg, from what he explained to me, had cancer in the bones of his knee. They didn’t want to amputate his whole leg so they removed the knee and grafted a rod in place— this would have been back in the late 80s so I’m sure they do stuff differently now."
Students Can Be So Mean
"a girl had an epilepsy attack and she lost control of her bowels. Not a pretty sight."
"Mean girls type made fun of her, and she transferred to another high school."
Teenagers deserve more credit than they're given.
These days, they are forced to grow up fast and learn important life lessons earlier than their parents like for them to experience due to various circumstances unfolding on campus.
If they can survive high school, they can survive almost anything in life past graduation.
One would think we're in a place in time where all conversations should be easy.
But that is not the case.
So much is still too "taboo" to be truthful about.
It is so frustrating.
There is so much to discuss.
Being shy is understandable, but it's something that we can all get over.
Redditor No_One_Special34 wanted to breakdown some barriers with a few simple conversations, so they asked:
"What is a taboo subject that should be talked about more?"
"Child/infant death. When my daughter died a bunch of people just... stopped talking to me altogether."
"I'm sorry to hear about your child."
"A 7-year-old was hit by a truck last week near my son's kg. I've never met the boy but I have had nightmares about it. I can't imagine what the parents are going thru right now. I can't imagine what you are going through."
"This happened to my mom when my brother died. Nobody knew what to say so few people said anything, and then it was treated like it didn’t happen."
The Aging Process
"We are a disgustingly ageist society. No wonder people pay BILLIONS for plastic surgery, hair color, and fitness, etc to stay relevant and not be thought of as useless or 'other.' It’s so very hateful. I think our society fears old age and death. It’s a f**king pathos."
"THANK YOU! I'm a 20-year paramedic. One of the things that I really hoped COVID would shed a light on is the absolutely abhorrent treatment of our elderly and infirmed. The 'treatment' in far too many nursing homes is negligent to a criminal level."
"Household budgets and finance - how much your parents make, how much is the mortgage, car insurance, car payment, and so on."
"That's easy. House, two cars, three kids, stay-at-home wife, pets, college tuition for everyone in the bank, a summer cottage home by the lake, and a hobby like golf should all do if you're a hardworking drug dealer nowadays."
"Agreed! We have gone into detail about our finances with our kids. We have them pick jobs on LinkedIn and a home on Zillow and budget so expenses and have them watch as they realize they can't afford expensive stuff on a crap salary. It's been really great."
Look for the Signs...
"Many people tend to assume that abusive people look creepy/scary and behave badly in general, but they don't seem to get that anyone can be abusive, regardless of appearance or demeanor. An abusive person can easily be charming, attractive, funny, witty, etc."
"Just because you think someone has a few positive qualities does not mean they're incapable of abuse."
"If someone's child 'seems' happy and well behaved, it does not mean that they are automatically OK or safe. There are many signs of abuse, and I wish that more people educated themselves on this issue. We can literally save lives by doing so."
The Girl Truth
"Girls need to know everything there is to know about menstruation before they experience it. At my school we were only given a quick 'every month you will bleed out your vagina, you can use pads or tampons to absorb it.' Nothing about any of the other mental or physical effects, nothing about how to deal with them, and nothing else reassuring."
Why are girls not taught more sooner?
Like what year are we living in?
"Number one for me, especially out-of-order deaths (young deaths). My husband died when I was 33 and he was 38. It's been almost 3 years and people still struggle with how to talk to me. We need to talk about death more as a society."
Only Legal One
"Alcoholism, especially in older generations."
"The biggest drug in the world, the most dangerous, only legal one. Alcohol has been disguised to make society believe it isn't even a drug. Now we're all hooked and can't go a week without a drink, funny because the cravings come back within a week."
"I quit drinking 18 months ago and it kinda sucks because if you want to go meet new ppl or go on a date it usually involves alcohol."
"Comprehensive sex ed. My mother never had sex ed and was convinced that vaginal discharge wasn't normal and that your crotch didn't sweat."
"My mother had a condition that requires her to use a catheter. She was shocked to learn that she doesn't urinate from her vagina, and that the opening to her urethra is actually slightly above it. She's 75. I'm a dude, and I've known that since I was 14."
"She was raised Catholic, and her mother taught her nothing. Not even what her period was. She was convinced she was dying."
Follow the Money
"Financial debt. In my line of work, I see people's bank accounts and credit reports every day and it is very rare that someone has zero debt. Excluding mortgages (which is a given) the vast majority have car finance, personal loans, and credit card balances. Mostly it's manageable, credit is mostly a convenience for which a person pays interest."
"But debt can also destroy a person. It can keep you up at night feeling like you're literally suffocating. It can lead to suicide. I know because I was close at one point. I don't know if I would have actually gone through with it but I had planned it to the point of measuring rope from the timbers in my attic to my neck and to ensure my feet wouldn't touch the ground."
"If you are in debt you are not alone, you're in the majority. If it's a struggle, notify the lenders/creditors; they're legally obligated to offer options to help you. It might reduce your credit score a bit but please don't ever reduce your life instead."
"Life is precious and money isn't. If you're struggling financially please speak to someone. There is no shame in it, pretty much everyone is struggling financially so someone will understand but please don't let a credit card balance be the reason your life ends."
"Pooping and poop problems. Colon cancer is so common and relatively treatable, but like all cancers, it's so much better to catch it early - yet so many people are too embarrassed to talk about poop problems, and they don't bring it up with their doctor until it's too late."
"I have ulcerative colitis and make sure all my friends know I'm totally comfortable talking about poop if they ever have any questions about whether something happening to them is normal or concerning."
Speak more. Speak louder. We've all been quiet too long.
The Thing People Would Look For First If Given A Box Of Everything They Ever Lost
As much as we might try to take care of our things, there are going to be instances where we lose things that we love.
Ironically, those lost things might be some of the most meaningful things we have in our lives.
Redditor baba_yaga_777 asked:
"If someone offered you a box of everything you ever lost, what would you look for first?"
A Mother's Brooch
"The brooch I bought for my mom's birthday when I was five years old (60 years ago)."
"I took all my money out of my bank and walked to the local Hallmark store. The nice lady took my money (probably less than $2) and wrapped up the gift."
"When my mom opened her gift, we walked back to the store 'to thank the lady for wrapping it so nicely.' It was actually so my mom could offer to pay the rest of the cost of that beautiful brooch. The lady wouldn't accept any more money, though."
"And here we are, 60 years later, and I still remember the incredible kindness of that lady."
"I don't have the brooch or my mom, but I do have this memory."
"When we left Yemen during the civil war in 1994, it was rushed and we lost a handbag that had all family photos from 15 to 20 years prior. It sucks not to have pictures of me when I was younger."
The Perfect Fit
"My swim trunks for this summer. I just got them last year and they fit me perfectly, and now I can't find them for the life of me. It p**ses me off thinking about it."
All Progress Saved
"The 'Pokémon Crystal' game that I had leveled all of my favorite characters up to Level 80. The housecleaner swiped it and my parents wouldn’t believe me. F**k you, Julie."
Lost Loved Ones
"My daughter. She was gone way too quick."
A Beloved Baby Blanket
"My childhood blankie. I have no idea what happened to it!"
"I somehow managed not to lose or destroy mine and gave it to my firstborn child. He still keeps it in his bed and turns seven soon. I think I’d ask for that too if it was lost."
Former Best Friends
"My best friend from my formative years."
"Oof, same. She was like a sister to me. She lives on the other side of the country now and, even though we grew apart, I miss how I felt when I spent time with her."
"The stuffed platypus I had when I was in elementary. Every time my mom mentions finding stuff in my grandpa's house, I ask about it."
In Exchange for Toxic Relationships
"The self-esteem that I allowed others to destroy during a phase of illness."
"High school sketchbook full of emo edgy drawings."
The Family Ring
"My mum's ring she'd been given by her Grandma that I pawned (my mum agreed at the time but always regretted it afterwards)."
"I got way, way less than its worth, since the guy took advantage of my age and desperation. The worst thing is, I can't even remember the design so can't ever have it replicated and can't ask my mum because she passed away earlier this year."
"Sure, I still love holidays but… as a kid, it was like, 'Holy mother of everliving f**k, Halloween is in THREE WEEKS? That is entirely too long. I will never be able to wait. Holy d**n.' And when it finally arrived, I'd have the night of my life."
"Now it’s like, 'Oh no. Halloween is in two days. Uh... Oh well...'"
The Sea of Lost Picks
"As a guitarist, all of my f**king picks."
Junk Drawers and Boxes
"The box I lost that had everything in it."
Quite the Conundrum
"The issue is that I can't recall what I've lost."
We've all lost things in our lives, some more important than others.
It's especially telling that at least most of us know exactly what we would seek first, before anything else that might possibly be in that box.
People Share What Their Reaction Would Be To Meeting A Naked Hiker On The Trail
There are several things that are appealing to hikers.
Being out in nature and taking in some fresh air is a huge motivation for people to get out of the house.
Getting exercise is also a factor to maintain a healthy heart.
But there could be one unexpected element to a hike that can happen hypothetically, and it's sure to raise your heartbeat.
Specifically, seeing something shocking along the hiking trail, like, say, a naked person could make for an exciting–or disturbing–hiking outing. It certainly doesn't get any more au natural than that.
Curious to hear from strangers, Redditor spenf asked:
"What would be your reaction if you encountered a nude hiker?"
These Redditors assessed the situation and saw no harm.
"I have passed two nude hikers in my 35 years of hiking. One male, one female, years and thousands of miles apart. Both said 'hello'. I said 'hello.' One mentioned the trail was washed out ahead but a second trail has been cut. I thanked them for the heads-up. Some people like the wind and sun on their skin. Both had on hiking boots. To each their own."
Sign Of Good Character
"I have. Three times! I'm an avid backpacker and you can usually find me in Yosemite, SeKi, Emigrant or Carson-Iceberg in California on any random summer weekend."
"My standard line: 'Afternoon, I didn't realize it was so cold out today!'"
"One of them didn't get the joke. The other two laughed their nude a**es off."
"Here's my reasoning. If you're naked and can laugh at a joke, you're probably not a threat."
"Depends. A hiker with hiking boots/shoes and a backpack, but otherwise nude, or a completely nude person on a hiking trail?"
"Scenario 1: I give a friendly wave and hike on."
"Scenario 2: I give a more tentative wave and hike on, maintaining a heightened awareness of my surroundings."
"I met one once. A middle aged man in ok shape. Had nice hiking boots, thick wool socks, fancy framed backpack, two walking poles, hat, sunglasses, and nothing else on."
"I said hi in a neutral voice, he replied hi in an equally neutral voice. We passed, I did not look back."
Some hikers are suspect.
"While backpacking out of Rocky Mountain National Park we encountered a dude wearing nothing but shoes and some very small shorts. He was off trail about 100' at the edge of a meadow, walking and swinging a machete. I...did not approach. He was probably a mile in from the trail head. I'm guessing drugs."
Beware Of Black Magic
"Ha! There are a lot of superstitious rumors/stories circulating around scenario 2 in India. Apparently, people who practice black magic with the sole intent of harming someone are often seen walking naked in places you don't expect people, carrying weird items."
"Either you interrupt them by disturbing them (no clue what happens next) or you run in the opposite direction."
You may want to take note.
"I live in the Bay Area and naked hikers are not uncommon."
"Good naked hiker: has appropriate shoes, a backpack or fanny pack, is hiking with intention and looks tanned and fit and like he does this regularly. Good naked hikers will give you room so you don't have to interact unless you really want to."
"Bad naked hiker: shoeless, visible sores, scrapes, or burns, moving erratically (i.e. really slow or in a zig-zag). Might be a drugged out person. Out-of-shape or pale are indications this is not normal for them and they may not have intended for this to happen."
"Exhibitionist: makes a point to make eye contact, smile at you, wave, try to involve you. Good naked hikers are usually on long, deep trails where they're less likely to encounter others, and they tend to give clothed hikers a wide breath out of a sense of respect and consent. Exhibitionists get chummy; it excites them to be seen naked."
"Also depends on the area. A deep woods area with long trails is ideal for naked hiking. Shorter and more accessible trails are less okay because there's a higher likelihood of encountering families with children."
"Also depends on if they're with friends or not. A group of naked hikers is less concerning than an individual."
"All this boils down to:"
"If you see a naked hiker, mind your own business. A good naked hiker isn't trying to bother you. A bad naked hiker is potentially dangerous. An exhibitionist wants attention so any attention paid to them will fuel them. Best thing to do is nod as you pass and carry on like you haven't even noticed."
"Edit: There are actually areas in the Bay Area where it's permitted to hike naked. Regionally, some places allow nudity. Also some places allow women to be topless so a topless female hiker might just be evening out her tan. It's best not to assume and to know the local laws before passing judgement on a person getting their nature on."
Guilty as charged.
The Name Is A Dead Giveaway
"No reaction at all, since I would be nude myself."
"Stare in disbelief. That's just very strange and coincidental for two nude hikers to run into each other."
"I guess make sure they have sunscreen also."
To each their own, but if hiking in the nude is your thing, you do you.
And just a heads up: If you're walking around in the buff and happen to be wielding a machete, you're going to make people very jittery. So maybe drop the prop.
Also, wear plenty of sunscreen.