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October 8, 2010 at 3:08 PM

Lunch goes postal: why I love the U.S. Postal Service

My late father, who was quite a storyteller, was also a stamp collector who adored the U.S. Postal Service. “Think about it,” he once said to me. “Name another service that will send someone directly to your door to fetch an envelope, put it in a truck, fly it across the country and deliver it anywhere in the U.S.A. — for only 37 cents!” He had a very good point, but that’s not why I love the USPS. Here’s why:

For a long time my mail arrived via a cheerful curly-haired fellow named Tom who always had a kind word, and even showed up at our door with a baby gift (his own!) when Nate was born. In recent years the mail comes via his successor, Skip, who regularly chats with me about Chinese food and apparently checks in with my All You Can Eat fan page. Last night I told my Facebook fans about the double-batch of Sri Lankan beef curry I was preparing for dinner, and Skip chimed in via the social network, asking, “Do you have enough for your mailman???”

I did. And today I left him a pint of it in an insulated lunchbox with a note that read, “Got Rice?” Skip ate the curry during his lunch break, and returned the lunchbox shortly thereafter, along with my pint container — filled with his homemade chili, which I ate for lunch. Oh, how my dad would have loved that story. So, anybody else trade edible treats with their mail carriers? Care to share your stories?

Neither rain, nor sleet, nor gloom of night will keep me from this homemade chili.

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