Tuesday, April 01, 2008


The mystery deepens.

A while ago I wrote about a letter to Jim Moseley, writer/editor of the zine Saucer Smear, that had been returned to me because it was allegedly “undeliverable.” There was no reason for the letter to be sent back: it was properly addressed and stamped.

Jim checked with the post office on his end in Key West, Florida. The postal official said that someone made a mistake.

Some time after that incident, Jim called me and let me know that he had received an undamaged letter from saucer cartoonist Matt Graber inside the standard plastic bag with the note from the PO apologizing for damaging the item.

The first time I wrote about this postal strangeness, I speculated that men in black (as in human government spooks) were embedded in USPS, keeping track of saucer fiends. Yesterday I can across an item at ufomystic.com by Greg Bishop, talking about some weirdness he encountered with his snail mail communications with abduction researcher/writer Karla Turner before she died in 1996. (Link)

To quote Greg: “Strangely, every piece of mail that I received from Turner showed evidence of tampering. Some were left open, while others were sealed in plastic with an apology from the US Post Office.”

According to Greg, the tampering stopped after Turner sent her envelopes with the flaps taped. On each tape was written: SEALED BY SENDER.


Greg Bishop said...


I was a fan of your zine way back in the day.

The worst example of mail tampering I had was from a cattle mutilation researcher. All of his letters were either "lost," opened, or severly damaged. He got skittish and stopped talking to me after a few of these epsiodes, for some reason which he would never tell me.

Doug said...

Well, of course they have to be checking the mail; websites and email are easily hacked, but an envelope is only easily mangled. How do you expect our ostensibly elected officials to keep track of what private citizens are sending amongst themselves without ripping open their containers? How else are they to protect us from ourselves?

At least they wrap up the leftovers and offer a tepid apology some of the time.

Ray said...


ThanX for the feedback. Speaking of "back in the day," any word from Donna Kossy? I still miss her zine, Book Happy.


But what's weird is when they put an undamaged envelope in one of their bags with a damage notice. Maybe they want you to think that even though you can't detected any signs of tampering, they are still checking your mail.


X. Dell said...

I've actually had similar problems with USPS, much more than everyone else than I know. Then again, I send more snail mail than most people, and that could simply reflect the inefficiency of the post office.

The Dr. Turner example is interesting.

Ray said...

X. Dell:

Speaking of inefficiency, how is your home delivery? Mine sucks. The route guy seems to only look at last names. If the last name matches - it doesn't matter if the first one is different - into the mailbox it goes, despite the fact the address is five doors down or even in another town. And even then the deliveryman puts such mail in the wrong mailbox - he can't even match the last name with the correct mailbox. (All the boxes have numbers and names.)

And then there's the line at the main PO. Is it me or are the lines are longer and slower?

Rate increase on May 1, huh? Mission Accomplished or May Day (as in SOS)?


X. Dell said...

Ray, home delivery sucks. I'm guessing that they get it there 95% of the time, but that's after judging from the amount of mail people say they have sent to me compared to what I receive.

Come to think of it, I don't receive much in terms of junk mail. So maybe that's a blessing?

Now that I think of it, the lines seem to be longer, and the service slower. Many post offices have undergone some time of rennovation (in the past ten years) which leaves one to three windows upon instead of four or five.