The Postal Service said it would cut back to five-day-a-week deliveries for everything except packages. Thanks in part to Internet commerce and communications and its own costs, the department lost almost $16 billion last year. It hopes to save $2 billion annually with the Saturday cutback.
“Things change,” said Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe. The Internet is free, he added, “and you cannot beat free.”
You can mourn change, however. The differing attitudes on that score are personified by Andy Simonoff, 58, of Costa Mesa, Calif., and her 28-year-old son Michael.
Andy said she’s sorry about the end of Saturday mail, even though she could see it coming, even though her household mail doesn’t arrive until late afternoon, even though it rarely includes anything of interest.
But her three sons, she said, “think the mail is a dinosaur.”
She doesn’t want to say they never write, but she’s resorted to saving printouts of their text messages. When she sends her 18-year-old in college a birthday card, she has to phone ahead to warn him to check his box.
Michael Simonoff, an IT hardware dealer, said he still gets snail mail, although he has never bothered to fill out a change-of-address form after his several moves. Why should he? “It’s much easier to stay in touch by cell or e-mail. If I’m out of the country for a few weeks, I don’t want something being delivered to my doorstep.”
When he does return from a trip, the mailbox is full. The 28-year-old woman with whom he lives “has collected it, maybe, once,” he said.