Monday, May 10, 2021

Pony Tales From the PO

The Pony officially started work today! Sure, he's been on two weeks of paid training, but today he will begin the first of three days deliverinig mail on a route with a handler. Then they will turn The Pony loose!

When he got back from his four days of training in Springfield, The Pony said he really likes the first part of the day when he sorts the mail for his route.

"We were all doing it while the instructor timed us. Me and a middle-aged lady were the fastest. Actually, she beat me by about 20 seconds. We were done in four minutes. The other trainees took almost twice that long. The instructor said, 'You realize you did 5 minutes worth of work in 4 minutes.'"

"You don't want to do that on the job! There goes your overtime pay, heh, heh! But seriously. It will make the other workers mad. Because they might be doing it on the time that's allotted. Nobody likes a showboat. And if they really CAN'T do it any faster, they'll resent you for that."

"The first lady I trained with on a route was sorting some new carrier's mail. She did two trays. The other new lady in our office said during HER training, this one did FOUR trays of other people's mail. I think if they do that, they can get a shorter route for actual delivery."

"I figured you'd like that sorting part. It's exact. No gray areas."

"The only part I know I won't like is driving the truck and parking on a lot. I don't mind parking on the street, but in a lot, we're supposed to BACK IN to the parking spaces. Because it's easier to back into a space than back out, when you don't know what might be going on in the lot behind you."

"Well. They trained you on the truck, and you passed."

"I know. But a car is not the same as a cone!"

"Did you hit a cone?"

"Not a one!"

The Pony went to Walmart yesterday, and bought a two-piece rainsuit. He has ordered shoes from the USPS approved vendor. Not because he HAS to, but because other workers said he will need a good pair of shoes, for comfort, and because they'll wear out so fast. I think he doesn't get a uniform allowance until after his 90 days probabtion. But he got a free USPS hat!

In fact, The Pony brought in his kit to show me and Hick. I swear, it was the cutest frickin' thing every! Like a comp giveaway at a casino! The Pony had the following items:

- nylon mail pouch for carrying the mail
- mail cap
- strap-on headlamp
- medium pump bottle of Purell hand sanitizer 
- bright orange reflective vest for wear after dark
- bottle of pepper spray in case of dog attack
- gallon water jug (blue) with handle (not insulated, about the thickness of a Solo cup)

The Pony was supposed to report for work at 8:00 a.m. It's about a 20-minute drive at speed limit. He plans to get there about 30 minutes early. I doubt that will last long. As for now, The Pony is chomping at the bit to hit the streets and earn money.

I'm pretty sure that when he gets home, he'll be one tired Pony.


  1. He just might surprise you and decide this is his life's ambition. Imagine his dogs will be barking even with new shoes.

    1. He is currently wearing black leather shoes with a soft sole. Shoes he wore for band concerts and marching, back when he played trombone in high school. No. We never throw anything away...

      He has to have shoes with NO OPEN TOES, and not mesh, for working inside the building, in the sorting room. He took a pair of mesh Nikes in case he wanted to change on the route.

  2. So they're bringing back the Pony Express?

    1. I'm not sure we are ready for the EXPRESS word. I'm pretty sure he could deliver my AT&T bill to Illinois in less than two weeks, though.

  3. strap-on headlamp? Is he delivering into coal mines? Or is that so people can see him coming on a foggy day?
    I got pretty good at the sorting machine when I was working in a mail centre, a huge rack in front of me with slots and each separate post code went into a different slot to be whisked away, tough in the beginning, but I had the hang of it by lunchtime, but only got to work it for two days then the regular girl was back.

    1. I'm pretty sure that's for winter, when it's dark around here by 5:00. People in Backroads were commenting last year that their mailman was delivering with a headlamp, after 8:00 p.m.

      The Pony said he had a rack with slots. Too bad you had to leave once you got good at it!