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They Listened to What I Said

The United States government finally listened to what I had to say.

Worth $100,000 in mint condition!
Inverted Jenny – 1918. Photo by SabreCEO (2006). PD-USGOV. Wikimedia Commons.

Effective 10 April 2016, the Post Office reduced its rate on first class mail from 49 cents to 47 cents. This was the first time they lowered the cost of a stamp in 100 years. Why? I have no clue. Seems stupid to me considering their financial condition. But hey, I’ll take a 4% cut in any of our expenses.


I have a lot of interaction with the Post Office. I have a P.O. Box there to collect mail for Southeast Business Forums and Yooper Publications. One at a time and when requested, I mail my books to Amazon from the Green Hills post office (presumably someone has put an order in for a book). After Amazon conducts their quarterly inventory count and finds too many of my books are taking up shelf space, I receive the extra ones back. Happy Face!! Oh, I also buy my stamps from the nice folks behind the counter. Read More They Listened to What I Said

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The Pee Ladies of Paris

I like to maintain traditions as much as the next person—remember Tevye singing “Tradition” in the movie Fiddler on the Roof? A tradition in Paris is about to become extinct—all in the name of “progress.”

Well, one of the traditions—or should I say, experiences—was being in the men’s public bathroom while the female attendant waited for me to finish so she could tidy up the place after I left (and collect her half a franc). Imagine the impression this made on a ten-year-old American boy living in Europe over fifty years ago.

Urinal Cross-Sales

Madame Pipi – A toilet lady. Photo by Yves Lorson (2006). PD-Creative Commons Attribution 2.0. Wikimedia Commons.
Madame Pipi – A toilet lady. Photo by Yves Lorson (2006). PD-Creative Commons Attribution 2.0. Wikimedia Commons.

These Paris toilet ladies or as they are affectionately known, “dames pipi” or pee ladies, are about to be dismissed by the government in favor of a Dutch company called 2theloo (cute name, huh?). You see this company has developed a new automated toilet technology. What it really flushes down to is cross-selling toilet products. Yep, the dames pipi are expected to follow me to the stall, be able to speak multiple languages, and sell me stuff like toilet paper and tooth-brushes. Their traditional cleaning responsibilities seem to have taken a back seat to cross-selling toiletries. Read More The Pee Ladies of Paris