Postcard Devils

  • We’ve been at this for many years now, and seen just about everything that can happen to a postcard between buying it new, to holding it again 100 years later after passing through albums.   Imagine a single piece of paper surviving that long.  We thought we might mention many devils that can affect a card from beginning to end, and split everything into four sections:  before you receive the card; any time at all; after receiving; and “try to ignore these”.   So, here goes …

A.  Before you receive your card in the post

*  Card was written but not mailed at all, or it came in an envelope

*  Loaded with stickers other than airmail:  address labels, cute kitties, etc.

*  No machine cancellation, so someone scrawls a pen over the stamps

*  Writer placed stamps or an airmail sticker over the card’s caption

*  Mailed from a country the card doesn’t represent.  They went to Paraguay and mailed it from USA?

*  Postal damage in transit — extra postmark ink, like that.

B.  Any time before or after sending

*  Folded

*  Torn

*  Used as a coaster for coffee or tea or beer or worse

*  Water damage (rain?) made the message’s ink run

*  Someone writes “we were here on _______” on the back, or puts an “X” over a hotel room on the front

C.   After the card reaches its destination, it might face

*  Album corner abrasions

*  Edges trimmed to fit an album, especially now that cards are getting bigger

*  Thumbtack hole from that office bulletin board

*  Aging remnants of sticky tape used to display it on a refrigerator door

*  Worst of all, the instinctive impulse people have to rip the stamp off the card no matter how ordinary it was

D.  But we can ignore …

*  Writer scratching out mistakes in spelling or address

*  Stamps placed upside down

*  Card meant to come to Hong Kong but was “Missent to Bangkok” and says so (actually, we like those)

Next time you receive an undamaged postcard from your friend or family, show some respect!  🙂

Now, one more thing, if you’ve read this far.  We need to clean up our mailing list for this Blog, and human nature being what it is, we must ask you to let us know if you want to continue receiving the occasional e-mailed notices.  To do that, just let  know with “Subscribe” in the subject line.  No need for a long message.  This same reminder will appear in the next notice after this one, after which everything gets updated.  Thanks for your understanding, and Happy Summer (or Winter, depending on where you are).

Until next time …