Two of the strangest showcases of human society I know are the zoo, any zoo (I have written more than a bit on this) and the Post Office.

I could go in a lot of directions with the PO (many of you know that Lib works in a rural PO) but I only want to look at one today: addresses.

Our town, the 8____ Zip code, covers an enormous area, from the Alamo Indian reservation 40 miles north (and a few ranches north of that) to a rural route that stretches 75 dirt- road miles to the south.

The population isn’t big, but still some addresses defy deciphering. I wrote down the following, printed, business- mailed ones while having coffee with the staff this AM. Printed, mind you, not handwritten by illiterates- well, maybe the last…

But for name and Zip, these are the ENTIRE ADDRESSES; each separate line is a whole one.

Indian Reservation

Rural Area

UFO Area

Two Houses Behind Benson’s [who is… dead– SB]


Update: someone says I should add that my address for my electric bill is and has been for over 20 years “Montoya Rock House.”

Or in directions: “You know, Steve Bodio’s house that was Cecilia’s that used to be rock.” (Still is of course but stucco’d over in ’84).


  1. When I dream
    (and I seldom do any more),
    I dream about living in a house
    without a number,
    on a road
    without a name,
    two houses behind Benson's,
    who is dead.

  2. There is an old story that when the post office received a letter addressed as follows:


    it delivered the letter to John Underwood, Andover, Massachusetts.


  3. Well crap. Hardly seems right to post something pedestrian behind The Terrierman's greatness, but…

    There was a bookstore up in Kennebunkport that had a bulletin board upon which were pinned envelopes w/ alternative takes on the town's name. My favorite was Kenneth's Bank Port (there may have been terminal 'e's).

  4. "UFO Area" is pretty special. I should ask our postmistress (it's a one-person p.o.) if she has seen anything that good.

    But isn't this the usual rural story? At our last training day, the v-p of the volunteer fire department, who has only lived here ten years or so, was asking, again, that fires be reported by highway mile marker or, if possible, by address, not by descriptors such as "down by the old Springer place" (currently uninhabited).

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