Wed. May 31st, 2023


By Carol Tannenhauser
This is an Answer Column without an answer, but the question is so well asked!
We tried reaching the post office branch in question by phone, but none of the choices the automated message offered applied, and the branch is now closed. We’ll keep investigating, but, meanwhile, maybe you can help our reader, Marcia Epstein, who wrote:
“The Post Office at 94th Street and Columbus has no stamps. I found it incredible to hear that after I trekked over!  How can a Post Office have no stamps?  I am old.  I still mail in my bills.  What am I to do now?  What is going on here?”

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They *should* have stamps. But, if this bizarre situation doesn’t remedy itself, note that you can order them online from the USPS website.
I’d guess all the campaign literature that’s been mailed the past month or so.
I’ve been ordering stamps by online for almost 6 years. It was the only way I could get specialty stamps for invitations. They also have rolls, books, and sheets of the standard flag stamp. Once you set up an account it’s easy to use and the order arrived within a week.
If you bring in items to mail they print out a sticker like what a business might use to show postage paid. They may print them and sell some for you take with you for the next items you want to mail. It’s not pretty but it works like standard stamps
I went to the same post office around 10:45 earlier today (8/30) and they wouldn’t wait on me because they were going to close for an hour. Such a truly dreadful post office. It’s incomprehensible how we, as a country, are not better at mail after centuries of practice.
Impossible to imagine but Planetarium Station is worse. I once went to the main station on 34th Street and asked why. The clerk looked at me earnestly and said, “We call it Planetarium Station because the mail goes to Mars.”
Thanks to De Joy
this location is why I always hesitate before signing a petition to save the post office
Although folks have yelled about it before when they tried to close it I would not be surprised if this offshoot office was clsd for good at the end of their lease as well as the one down near Lincoln Center. Both of them do very little biz and cost a huge amount per square vs the $$ they bring in
The Lincoln center PO is pretty busy and has some good people working there. Their other strength is they are one of the only places to go deal with your passport. And they know what they’re doing with it as I just had to renew everything for my family of 5 and it was completed quickly and knowledgeably.
I agree with Robert.
The post office on West 52nd Street hasn’t had stamps in over a year.
I don’t know what your referring to – I buy stamps there all the time. They also have a separate line for seniors
The Planetarium PO is nothing short of a joke too; maybe it mirrors our whole civilization too or maybe my vision has become too broad, or apocalyptic. .
I recently moved everything I own all of 9 blocks, from 10024 to 10023; whenever I visit the old place I’m always greeted by a full-to-bursting , even though I’d sent in my PERMANENT MOVE notice about 3-4 weeks before I moved.
What if I couldn’t visit my old homestead because I’d moved to Kansas? I went to the Planetary PO to complain; they said they were on it; all 1st class mail would be sent henceforth to my new home (ha!).
Two weeks later I’m back at the manse; the box is full-to-bursting; one of the envelopes contains a check from Governor Hochul to me for $300+ (is there an election soon?). So back to the PO.
I went to the Planet, waited on line a good long time to complain; when I got to the head of the line it turned out I was sent to the wrong window (I think all of 3 people work there). I finally saw some supervisor (Mr. Smith?) who said he understood my situation perfectly, and he would have a word with the carrier and call me the next day.
He picked up a crayon and an envelope and asked, “your phone number?”
My heart sinking, I gave him what he asked for. A crayon? Really?
That was several months ago; I never expected him to call and I was not disappointed.
Then I got a tax refund of several thousand $$$ from New York State, deep in full-to-bursting. This time I called Jerrold Nadler and the James A. Farley main PO (or what used to be the main PO; I suppose we’ve all been taken down a peg or two, one way or the other).
Jerrold Nadler cannot be reached by telephone (unless you want to hear a commercial) and all emails to him are met with a tomb-like silence, at least from my experience… and he wants my vote, huh? Ha ha! Good one…
The PO called me back in a day or so, to say they were on it, and they’d call me back within 3 business days with an update… but, again, eternal peace of the grave, unending silence from all concerned, from that moment to this, would prove to be my lot.
This all happened several months ago. I visited my old place just this evening, to see how the contractors are doing. Can you guess what I found in my full-to-bursting mailbox this time?
Another letter from New York State for me.
Luckily it was about covid and contained no cash.
Sign up for direct deposit everything possible, including tax refunds.
A Congressman should definitely be deeply invested in ensuring your personal mail service is to your standards.
Boo! He has a large staff that we pay for and they should be able to quickly resolve problems like this.
I use this post office frequently, have never had a problem, and would hate to see it close. It’s so convenient for the neighborhood and prevents the need to trek up to the PO on 104th street for mailing packages, etc. It’s not perfect, but I appreciate its contribution to the neighborhood.
On a similar subject, the post office frequently skips the daily delivery to my building.
Another question I would love answered is, why are we only having mailed delivered 2-3 times a week? I live in the 10024 zip code and sometimes days goes by and my building doesn’t receive any mail. We get the junk type mail delivered early, and the regular mail would usually come before noon. But the past few months, we rarely get the regular mail delivered. I’d love to know why.
We live in the same zip and have wondered the EXACT same thing.
I love the post office on 60th St. Fast, efficient, and they had a variety of stamps to choose from when I was there a few weeks ago. The only thing is they do close early.
You can walk right across 95th Street to the P&S Deli at 95 and Columbus. They sell single USPS forever stamps at the counter. So does the variety store next to Mani Market between 94 & 93 on Columbus.
Please tell people who need stamps that they can be purchased at any Duane Reade. I also still send things by smail mail and haven’t been in a post office in years.
That office has always been a “Financial Station”. It’s not a full post office like the one on 104th St.It has always had terrible service so maybe they are shutting it down?
Our mail carrier just dropped a huge bag of mail in the lobby and left. Never put it in the mailboxes!
You can buy stamps from copy stores, newspaper stands and lots of other places. 🙂
I buy stamps in that office all the time – the automated machines at the back print them out.
I was in the post office this morning the machines was printing stamps
Inconceivable! Picking out stamps, whether they are seasonal, floral, or historical, is part of the joy of sending cards and invitations.
Ask Louis DeJoy. Apparently it’s about to get worse, btw.
I gave up using the USPS for most things. All my packages go UPS and my priority things FedEx. And I hardly ever send any first class mail. I remember when we were kids we’d put the addressee’s info in the return address upper left corner and the sender’s in the adressee’s center of the envelope. Always got there. And don’t bother with all your comments about dishonesty and we were what caused the P.O’s problems today. Enough already.
You can purchase a booklet of stamps at CVS or Duane Reade
In the meantime, the Brooklyn postal system went from last to top 3 most efficient in the nation.
They did it by following the USPS “Delivering to America” plan.
Manhattan post offices need to get with the program, literally!
I have always gotten good service. Angela and Regina are particularly friendly and helpful. The self service machine does sell stamps as well.
I went to the Post Office at 104th St. earlier today. It is closed –looks as though it may be closed permanently.
I will miss stamps — choosing them was one of life’s small pleasures. Bad things seem to be happening to our quality of life.
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© 2023 West Side Rag | All rights reserved.


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