We Deliver Dog Kicks - San Diego Letter Carrier Accused of Punting Pooch
In Memoriam for A Departed Brother
Doggy Disputes Deconstructed by The Postal Tsunami
In the faithful execution of his or her sworn duties, the most important part of a letter carrier's anatomy is the hand, of course, but the foot follows a close second. Feet, plural, to be more precise. Hopping around on one leg is not the postal-preferred method of locomotion. That aside, a letter carriers' feet are most commonly used to ambulate between mail boxes, but in dire emergencies they can also be employed as either a method of self-defense, or for preemptive attack.
Where defense against canines is concerned, the fine line between self-defense and preemptive attack is a tightrope on which even Philippe Petit, the man who walked a high line between the twin towers of the World Trade center in 1974, might fear to tread. This gray area of ethical ambiguity is where letter carriers sometimes get in trouble. Even though a dog owner might swear - my pup was just minding his own business when that nasty mailman came along and kicked him, the mailman with the happy chorus-line feet will respond, I could tell that cur was going to bite me, so I kicked it first. Even though letter carriers are doggy psychologists by necessity, the American Public does not understand our keen insights into the canine mind, and a public outcry often results. This is especially true on slow new days, if such a thing is still possible in the post-Donald world.
Letter Carrier Gets His Kicks
I think it was last week sometime that we were given a Stand-up talk - lately known as a "huddle" to try and make it sound more intimate and friendly, more of a group hug than a brutal beat-down, during which we were told that a letter carrier in San Diego had been accused of kicking a dog. Management told us that there was a video released in the news showing this unfortunate incident. This was obviously an embarrassment to the Postal Service. They told us not to kick any more dogs.
As the manager delivered these words of warning, just about every letter carrier in the group was thinking, so much so that the combined mental energy created a ripple in the air that was clearly audible, that I've kicked a dog before and I'll kick one again. What else you gonna do when all you've got is your shoe? Sometimes a well placed squib kick is the only thing that can save you from having a chunk ripped out of your leg.
Upon clocking out from work, I immediately set about trying to find this so-called video of the alleged dog-kicking. Although I did find the news report on the incident, which in a world full of Trump-riots and border protests seems rather incongruous and pitifully awkward there on the ten o'clock news, there was no accompanying video that shows the letter carrier kicking the dog. Either there is a cover-up of of Kennedy conspiracy proportions, or the video part was made up to add credibility to a story that frankly reeks like somebody stepped in a steaming pile of he-said, she-said.
I'm not necessarily proud of it, but I lay my soul bare before you in confessing that I am guilty of kicking a dog, in self-defense. I may have told you this story before, but a mini-Doberman came at me through a fence and before I realized what was happening it was doing back-flips in the air, propelled into near-Earth orbit by the action of my size 15 shoe.
Although I am sure there exists a sadistic handful of letter carriers that go out of their way to do harm to dogs, the great majority of us do not. Instead of deliberately kicking dogs out of some kind of vicious spiteful streak, many of us secretly pet pooches on our route, even though we are not supposed to. In most cases there is either an outright amicable relationship between dog and mailman, or at least mutual tolerance of the other's presence.
But just as these furry packages come in a multitude of colors, breeds, and degrees of scruffiness, dogs also vary in their dispositions and personality types, as do people. Either because of physical abuse or they were born bad to the bone, some dogs are just plain mean and will attack without provocation. That is when a mutt might require a good knick knack paddywack to make it go rolling home,
As a case in point, just last week a large German Shepherd came at me through a ripped window screen. Although I was certain that a mauling was in my immediate future, I am a slippery old fart and managed to fight the beast off by swatting at him with the letters in my hand, until the owner came out and restrained the animal.
In situations like this what's a mailman supposed to do, stand there and let a vicious dog rip into his flesh? More realistically, when a letter carrier's life is on the line he or she will take matters into his or her own hands, or feet, depending on which weapon is more readily available. He won't ask permission first during some let's all join hands and sing Kumbaya postal huddle.
Lonesome George Delivers Dog Safety Tips with The Delaware Destroyers
Furry Fake News?
February 2, 2017 must have been an awfully slow news day. Donald Trump insulting the Australian Prime Minister and riots in Berkeley were not enough to fill up a thirty minute time slot. The local news hacks here in San Diego had to go digging. They took their pooper-scoopers with them.
In the North Park neighborhood of America's finest city the keen investigative instincts of these journalistic sleuths uncovered that woman who claimed her dog had been kicked, unprovoked, by the mailman. Since there are always an eager handful of postal haters who love any story that barks out negative news about the Post Office, this clip looked like good enough filler to keep the minimum number of butts in front of the TV through the commercials. You can see the video for yourself via the link I have provided below.
The uninitiated, at first glance, meaning those who don't make a living enduring the bogus protests of customers who claim that their pacifist, vegetarian pups are absolutely Gandhi-like in their abhorrence of violence, would have no reason to doubt that the dog owner on the video is telling the truth. For instance, why isn't that docile, but strangely overgrown Chihuahua in the story not barking at, or trying to bite the reporters? If the dog is so mean that the letter carrier is forced to kick at it in anger, wouldn't it attack everybody?
On the other hand, or foot as it were, any seasoned letter carrier will tell you that some dogs who are all happy tail wags and hand licking while being walked down the street on a leash turn into raging, rabid, psychopathic brutes on their home turf. The territorial instinct awakens the inner demons of even the sweetest lap dog.
It looks to me like the interview with this outraged dog owner took place out in the street. In the canine mind, the street is no-man's land. It is a cease-fire zone. It is a wide-open, unprotected, borderless anarchy full of unknown horrors, and little dogs like this must be on their best behavior while passing through it. Take it back to the confines of its neat little yard, where it rules as undisputed sovereign, and this dog might take your leg off.
On my own route, there is a dog named Red who gives me a cheery doggy smile while his owners are out walking him. Back home, if the front door to the house is left open, he charges out and tries to amputate my arm as I am reaching through the gate toward the mailbox. The split-personality theory may be a bogus courtroom defense at human murder trials, but in the canine world it is a common character trait.
According to this news item, the Postal Service seems to be backing the letter carrier's version of events. Part of the reason Postal Supervisors are so cross-eyed they can't see the reality of the mail stacked before you may be because they roll their eyes so frequently, listening to cock-eyed stories from customers who swear my halo-wearing hound would never hurt anyone, can I get my mail delivery back? Managers are also well acquainted with certain postal prevaricators who exaggerate or concoct dog attack stories from whole cloth to get another delivery or two shaved from their routes. Although they can't ascertain the significance of the two APCs full of parcels I am loading into my postal vehicle, for the most part they can separate truth from fiction where it comes to wagging doggy tales.
We will probably never learn who is the ultimate villain in this case. The story will vanish into obscurity, just like this blog will, just like the thousands of other filler news stories that don't have the word TRUMP blaring in bold headlines above them. Therefore, why don't we just close out this edition of the Postal Tsunami with the sage words of the poet, good old Lonesome George:
Listen to me dog before you start to whine, That side's your's and this side's mine
Like the philosopher George Thorogood says, you stay on your side of the line, little fuzzball, I'll stay on mine, and you won't have to risk the uncontrolled flailing action of my size 15 feet.
Letter Carrier Kicks Dog?
- USPS investigating alleged dog-kicking incident - 10News.com KGTV ABC10 San Diego
The United States Postal Service is investigating an incident reported in North Park, where a woman claims a postal worker kicked her dog twice into the street.