America! Relax.

Every now and then I get the urge to SAY something (my daughter would attest to that). Today I want to reassure my fellow Americans that the Post Office is a lasting establishment. A true American entity. Since its inception we have had mail delivery continuously six days a week. Didn’t I learn about the pony express in grammar school? As a child I thought those pony express riders were heroes.  The mail got through no matter what. The phrase “Neither snow, nor rain, nor heat, nor gloom of night stays these courageous couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds”, was modified over time to refer to postal service workers, “Neither snow, nor rain, nor gloom of night shall stay these couriers from their appointed rounds”. I mean, for heaven’s sake, Benjamin Franklin was the first Postmaster General. The organizing of the Post Office was signed into law by President George Washington on February 20, 1792! This was major.

A few years later we gained The Postal Reorganization Act of 1970-Here is the first paragraph: “The United States Postal Service shall be operated as a basic and fundamental service provided to the people by the Government of the United States, authorized by the Constitution, created by Act of Congress, and supported by the people. The Postal Service shall have as its basic function the obligation to provide postal services to bind the Nation together through the personal, educational, literary, and business correspondence of the people. It shall provide prompt, reliable, and efficient services to patrons in all areas and shall render postal services to all communities. The costs of establishing and maintaining the Postal Service shall not be apportioned to impair the overall value of such service to the people.” We have since updated the USPS logo. Eagles are powerful, stately, determined and undeniably American, which reflects the spirit of the Postal Service and its employees.

The Marvelettes waited patiently for their mailman everyday. Or should I say postman. Wait, oh yea, wait a minute Mr. Postman-What a hit that was. Mail delivery was essential to living life. Still is. To so many people. People waiting for love letters or prescriptions. People waiting for hospital supplies. Checks. At one point Saturday delivery was almost cancelled, however, the Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act, 2013, passed reversing the cuts to Saturday delivery.

And how many of you remember Mr. McFeely? Speedy Delivery!! He stopped by Mr. Rogers place every day. He was always on time and always had a smile on his face. He was so much fun. One of the most popular characters on the show. Mr. McFeeley would sometimes bring videos to show children how macaroni or plastic combs were made. I always looked forward to mail delivery when I watched Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood.

Today I read that our postal system is by geography and volume the globe’s largest postal system, delivering 47% of the world’s mail. Nothing since the pony express has brought the United States Postal Service to a halt. Yet according to an article I read today by Bill Moyers, “citizens tremble” when they think of voting by mail as opposed to going outside and voting in person. Because of one man.

In my opinion, one man does not hold all of the power. Society may act as though they believe one man can disrupt a complete American system which might be what would cause people to tremble. But it’s not true. I believe today’s Post Office “scandal” is being used as a way to derail the American public’s thinking process. To confuse.

I say, relax. Don’t be skeered. Thank your mailman or mailwoman. They are a part of a great institution. I should know, I used to be a mail sorter.

Fun Fact: My father, Eddie Green, once got in trouble with the Post Office, according to my mom. Eddie would dress my mom’s female friends in long scarves, take pictures and send them on postcards to men who ordered them through magazines. One of the photos showed a bit too much and Eddie became a friend of the postal inspector. (Not really, he had to pay a substantial fine.) I wonder if he got his idea from this Mata Hari postcard?

 

 

Thanx, for stopping by, KCB

SINGING, DANCING, DRAMA, BLACK HISTORY

Eddie as KoKo
Eddie as KoKo

Hello there, this is so funny to me.  I was trying to crop a picture and this is what I got.  A hand-drawn cropping, almost looks like somebody’s profile.  Anyhow, my mom used to say, “You learn something new everyday.”  Here is something I learned while looking for information on my father, Eddie, from when he played “Koko” in the Hot Mikado in 1939.  I found this article from 1962, in the Philadelphia Inquirer.

“Tonight at 8:00, the esteemed Sir Arthur Sullivan would have rarely looked more dour . . . and Sir William Gilbert might have returned to his law practice were they alive to hear the liberties taken In the late 30s version of Mikado.  Tonight we take a second listen as “Ko-Ko”, “Nam-Poo”, “Yum-Yum”, “Katisha” and friends go modern in Hot Mikado with Bill Robinson and Eddie Green.”

A good little blurb to add to my book.

Bill “Bojangles” Robinson turned sixty-one while starring in the Mike Todd version of Hot Mikado as the Mikado.  A local newspaper ran this ad:

“A second negro production of “The Mikado” in modern swing tempo, entitled The Hot Mikado opens tonight at the Broadhurst with Bill Robinson, the tap dancer, in the lead role.”

Michael Todd, producer of the play sponsored an after-theater party on stage at the Broadhurst Theater, where the cast of the play, members of the Cotton Club and a bunch of friends drank a toast to Bill’s health and wished him many happy returns.

Bill Robinson-Wikipedia
Bill Robinson-Wikipedia

According to the New York Age, “following the toastmaking, Eddie Green, “Koko” of Hot Mikado on behalf of the cast presented Mr. Robinson with a silver plaque on which was inscribed:  “Happy Birthday ‘Bill’ Robinson from the cast of the Hot Mikado Co. Broadhurst Theatre, May 28, 1939.” A silver stage crew, the onlv one of its kind in America, was another gift from the cast to its leading star.”

And here is an article from the Brooklyn Eagle, specifically about Eddie:

“Eddie Green, who has been funny all the time but has not quite seemed to get his teeth into anything, is singing “Titwillow” to Katisha and his “Titwillow” turns out to be completely delightful.  The song has, no doubt, been sung many times by better voices, but it could hardly be done more amusingly.  With it Mr. Green makes himself one of the jewels of the Hot Mikado.

In 1940, Eddie went on to appear on the Tommie Riggs radio program:

TONIGHT’S BEST RADIO BETS 7:50— “Blondie,” …Tommy Rlggs and Betty Lou. David Ross, Freddie Rich Orchestra. Eddie Green WEAF. 8:30— ..Brooklyn NY Eagle1940.

Eddie also found time to appear with Miss Hazel Scott on the dramatic mystery program The Bishop and The GargoyleimagesEHU5HJ1M

The show was about a former Bishop and an excon who teamed up to solve crimes.  It’s very gritty, I listened to about five minutes of one of the shows and here is a sample of the kinds of lines in the script: “Aw listen, man, don’t try to make a chest outta that stomach.”  So funny.

On the show, Eddie and Hazel did a skit titled “The Item of the Voodoo Doll”.  Miss Scott was a jazz and concert pianist, normally, who, according to the papers, put her own interpretation into Bach and Beethoven.  The reviews of her acting ability were good, and of course, Eddie was funny.

200px-Hazel_Scott_in_Rhapsody_in_Blue_trailer

Hazel Dorothy Scott, born in 1920 became a star in her own right and while she was at it, she married Adam Clayton Powell, Jr., who became the first person from New York of African-American descent to be elected to Congress, representing Harlem, New York, from 1945 to 1971. 200px-Adam_Clayon_Powell_Jr

Adam Clayton Powell, Jr. was also pastor of the Abyssinian Baptist Church and as such Rev. Powell christened me.  How’s that for a good ending?

Thank you so much, for stopping by.

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