Cliff Gardner

Friday, March 03, 2006

You've got mail!

When it comes to the hero worship of public figures, most kids idolize firefighters or cops. Not me! Growing up, I really liked mailmen. I remember one particular Halloween when my adoration for postal carriers was galvanized. My friend Robert was dressing up as a cop, but when I mentioned how the recent Rodney King trial had made it hard for me to trust the police, he just told me to shut up and get some Three Musketeers. Bert, the childhood fireman, was no better. After telling him how the movie “Backdraft” left me jaded with regard to smoke-eaters, he just laughed and told me to stop thinking so much (a common theme from my Elementary school years).

When they asked me why I was going as a mailman that year, I just told them that the mailman was someone you could depend on. He wasn’t the flashiest or most charismatic public servant, but he was always there, every day, and there was a certain degree of nobility in that sort of unheralded and underappreciated service.

OK, so I didn’t have the coolest costume that year. My black socks kept falling down, the uniform didn’t fit me well and my grey cap fell off several times. Plus, people didn’t quite know what to make of me giving them little postcards with my name on them. Still, I had fun and got a lot of candy! Neither rain nor sleet nor morbidly obese Seinfeld character could prevent me from respecting mail carriers everywhere.


  • hey fatty you kinda look like the seinfeld character.

    By Blogger Ashley, at 3:13 PM  

  • You are so great.

    By Anonymous Kristen, at 3:45 PM  

  • I agree. Mail makes me happy.

    Except bills, and that's not the mail carrier's fault.

    By Anonymous zayne, at 4:16 PM  

  • My favorite childhood costume was a dancing carrot. People didn't know what to make of me, either.

    By Blogger magic, and with love from Sam,, at 5:06 PM  

  • I agree, mail is fantastic. Nothing better than getting a letter unexpectedly.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 5:38 PM  

  • Tom, I wish I could meet the elementary school you. And the last post with the letter to your great great grandson...hands down amazing.. I really hope that one day you write a book : )

    By Blogger Megan, at 10:46 AM  

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