Prophetic Postage

About 15 years ago when the Microsoft goal of putting a computer on every desktop was just starting to kick it into high gear, there was an email circulating around the internet by way of concerned citizens with lots of email contacts and too much time on their hands.

Actually, there were lots of emails loaded with all types of crap. Keep in mind that lol-cats weren’t really around yet. The 90’s hadn’t really taught us that cats were as cute and stupid as lol-cats portray them to be.

Instead, we had impassioned pleas from the extended family members of third and fourth world royalty requesting the use of our bank accounts in order to move millions of dollars out the their embattled countries.

We had challenges to forward emails around the world so that Microsoft would donate vast sums of cash to charities unknown.

We had mailboxes full of free AOL disks.

Do you remember the email legislation?

That particular effort was the one where email recipients were duped into believing that Congress was in the process of taxing email in order to subsidize the US Postal Service. Since the use of snail mail was starting to show a decline, the American people were going to be called upon to support a great tradition.

Of course it was a hoax. The thought of the government levying taxation on the Internet to balance things out for a dying institution was preposterous.


This morning, ladies and gentlemen, I purchased a book of 20 stamps (pre-licked for my convenience) in tandem with a lemon poppy seed muffin (false positive) and a banana.

Unless that muffin was priced by the seed, those stamps came out to be about $.45 each.

Apparently the clandestine attempts of Congress in the mid 90’s to tax email were successful. Naturally, they couldn’t do it by way of the Internet, so they decided to hike the price of postage instead.

Fifteen years later, here we are. The magic of on line bill pay and email have rendered the US Postal Service ineffectual. News of layoffs and reduced delivery days plunder our lives with a sense that worlds will collide.

Personally I don’t think I’m going to miss an extra day of grocery store circulars, furniture store ads, and coupon mailers. The entire process of shoving that crap in my mailbox is just a middle step to move the above listed litter from the mail truck to my mail box to my recycle bin without me showing the slightest bit of courtesy of opening them up.

Yay twenty first century!

For the record, that was the first book of stamps I’ve purchasers since 2010. Shows you how much I need them.


Randy Tharp

TharpSter is a husband to one woman, a father to two kids, a master to two dogs, an occasional cubical occupant, and unable to make up his mind on an adequate theme for this website.

2 thoughts on “Prophetic Postage

  1. I was just talking to my friends about the days of the AOL disk. That was such a big deal. I cannot say I feel super bad for the postal service… but I really have no idea what I’m going to do with my mailbox, as it is attached to the house…

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