For most of my life I can remember seeing the list of the Federal Bureau of Investigation's 10 most wanted list in the post office. Every time I would go for stamps or to send off a package, I'd while away the waiting time by looking at the grungy pictures and imagine the gross crimes that these people had committed. I'd also secretly shake a little at just the thought of running into any of these creeps. Maybe this added to my aversion of visiting the post office, I don't know. I do know that going to the post office was always up there on my own list of things I really hated to do. Yup, right there along with cleaning the bathroom bowl, defrosting the fridge, cleaning the oven and root canals.
Lately when I go to the post office I don't seem to have that downer depressed feeling that I used to get. I think the reason for that has been answered in this news article that I saw today. Post offices no longer want the Most Wanted. According to Richard Watkins, postal spokesman for the Mid-America district, "most of the nation's 34,000 post offices took the posters off the walls several years ago. We decided to take them down and keep them in binders behind the counter. People have to ask to see them."
Well, thank goodness for that. Now we can all breathe a little easier; we don't have to look at the worst criminals of present time when we buy our stamps. How very thoughtful of those folks at the post office. But wait...what's this?
Mr. Watkins goes on to say "the walls are prime product display space now. A retail standardization policy issued in 1999 and updated in 2005, has prettied up post offices, making them more uniform and attractive -- the better to move merchandise."
It is "the Wal-Marting of post offices across America" according to Ron Pry. The post office now-a-days is filled with vivid red signs and wildly colored envelopes, track lights beaming on posters of Frank Sinatra, Walt Disney and Mickey Mouse...Where will it end?
I guess if we want to see America's 10 Most Wanted we will have to go to the FBI website, ask to see the book at the post office or perhaps just search for them on the Internet. But if we want hard sell designer stamps....well, I can tell you where to go!