The Aerie, Yearbook of University of North Texas, 1990 Page: 250
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SING THE MAILBOX BLUES
ostal employees handled
thousands of pieces of mail a
day and probably believed
that there were few, if any, groups of
people who would have been over-
joyed by the arrival of a mere letter.
But each and everyday, thousands of
college students rushed to their post
office boxes in the Union in a desper-
ate, and for many, futile attempt to
retrieve correspondence. Every day,
these students gazed through the
glass windows of their boxes and sti-
fled sighs of frustration as they saw
that once again, no one thought
enough of them to send mail.
The scene may have been pitiful
and bleak, but for many NT students,
it was life as usual. Just what caused
college students to harbor the irratio-
nal hope of receiving large volumes
of mail each day remained a mystery
that few seemed to understand. Most
contended that these desperate fools
were only the freshmen, who were
still adjusting to their new life away
from Mother. Others maintained that
mail was the serious college student's
only link to the outside world.
Many students commented on
"contests" students had based on the
volume of mail they received within
an allotted space of time. The student
with the most mail was secretly
thought to be the "coolest" and often
remained in the Union for hours,
gently fanning himself with what he
received. Such a sight was enough to
wrench gasps of we from the gaping
mouths of other Post Office patrons.
The contests were not completely
honest, though. Many students were
known to beef up their supply by
purposely signing lists to receive junk
mail or subscribing to a semester of
When asked what they like to re-
ceive in the mail, students listed hun-
dreds of items that could make them
smile. Said student Amy Richardson
of Houston, "I like getting love let-
ters, marriage proposals, bank state-
ments and beauty pageant entry
forms (in my mail box). It makes me
feel like a million bucks!" Amy also
knew her box number backwards,
and could occasionally be heard re-
citing it absentmindedly.
Melissa Edwards of Dallas went so
far as to create a Pen Pal concept for
people who rarely receive mail. The
idea was that these people would
sign-up to correspond with students
who had similar acquisition problems
in other countries. Edwards readily
admitted that the idea stemmed from
the concern she had at her own lack
of mail, but she remained confident
that the idea would pick up. "Despite
the fact that I have to study and I
have extra-curricular activities to
keep me busy, I like to hear from
other people my own age - especial-
ly from other countries," said Ed-
wards, "and I don't like to go to my
mailbox and it's empty."
No matter how expensive the basic
stamp got or how convoluted our
postal system, this battle for mail
would probably continue. Perhaps in
years to come, universities might have
created special support groups to
combat the neurotic effects this ob-
session could have. One could only
wonder if the problem would be as
great in the 21st century, when every
student would have his own FAX
machine in the Post Office.
- Kristi Nelson
With anticipation about its contents,
Joanna Langberg rushes home to open
her special delivery. Photo by Daniel
Hoping to find anything, Steven Cra-
vens checks his mailbox. Photo by
Here’s what’s next.
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University of North Texas. The Aerie, Yearbook of University of North Texas, 1990, yearbook, 1990; Denton, Texas. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth61055/m1/253/: accessed September 20, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Special Collections.