If you ever had to spend time in the DMV, Post office or other government office, you probably know what I am going to say next. There is a special kind of inefficiency that you experience when you are there. I don’t know how they manage it, but time seems to go slower when you have to interact with a government agency.
I went into the Post Office and I had a simple transaction. Unfortunately so did the other 10 people ahead of me. They had simple transactions too, but the gentleman who was employed had his own speed. Part of the problem is that he had a pattern of speaking and advertising that slowed it down, but I guess it helps make money for the Post office. So he had to go through his spiel with each person.
While I was waiting the lady in front of me asked a simple question and got the spiel that all of us had heard a half-dozen times with other customers. She looked over at me and gave me the look of understanding that said “Can you believe this guy? He is acting like a robot?” I just smiled and she went back to her business. What can you do but just tolerate certain situations in your life?
Just as an aside, is there a reason that Post Offices refuse to use the latest technologies? Many of them don’t have a stamp dispensing machine, and often their credit card scanner is out of date and slow. Do they get a kickback from card companies to take as long as possible to transact a charge? Couldn’t some credit card transactions have priority like say those of hospitals, police stations (bail), and post offices? Do people need to wait 1 minute to have their credit card go through so that Bob can buy some socks at Target faster? Why is the speed of services inversely proportional to their importance? It takes forever to get charged for an emergency room visit, but if I wanted to get a candy bar from a food dispenser I’m practically done in seconds.
I always thought that I would work as long as I can. I enjoy doing things so I never understood the people who wanted to do nothing. I suppose that not everyone is curious and wonders how things work. It is really a good feeling to learn something each day. What have you learned today?
I also found many of the comments interesting on this article. This is an interesting website that has all kinds of good information. I actually created an account on the government SS website because of reading this article so that I could see my benefits. Since I move often, I haven’t gotten the paper that shows your SS benefits for years. On the http://socialsecurity.gov website you can create an account and see your benefits privately. It was surprisingly easy to sign up and see.
I did some retirement calculators and it said that for someone who is my age, I should have 1.6 million dollars saved. I’m only about 1.6 million short of that goal. I think I’ll probably be working the rest of my life since it is really hard to save money. I have noticed that everywhere I have worked, my coworkers find it hard to save money as well. Just paying for rent and the basic living expenses make it hard. I am not asking for sympathy but just sharing that if I find it tough to make ends meet with no kids, I can’t imagine how people with kids pay the bills. I sometimes ask parents that and they say that they find a way. I think they must be getting by because of those tax breaks like Earned Income Credit and deductions. You really get socked on taxes when you have no children.