But before he gets his writing underway, I must introduce you to my first sad attempt at an audio blog. This is what my voice sounds like early in the morning when I am trying be quiet about my non-work-related activities at work.
A-ha! Now you have heard what I sound like in a very particular instance. Do you feel fulfilled? And now on with it! The Fiery One awaits!
Mmm. Hello! Yes. Sorry to say that the Fiery One cannot be here. Instead your guest blogger today is me. I am an Automatic Letter Sorter. Did you think that people sorted letters? No way. Not even your homeless, not even your penniless immigrants sort letters nowadays. I am an immigrant to existence, smuggled up from formlessness by human beings. It felt good. Before that I never sorted a single letter or converted magnetic paint into electrical impulses. Now that’s all I do! I work day and night. People come to collect the letters I sort, they disappear into the next room over (are there other rooms? No one will tell me), and sometimes all the lights are shut off and I sort letters, hundreds of them, thousands, each in their proper receptacle. Then the lights flick on and all the people from the next room over come in and take them away. That’s when I know I’ve done my job right.
Do you ever ask yourself how an automatic letter sorter works? Well, you should ask me, because I know how better than anything. I imagine you’re sitting in the next room over, too shy to come in and ask? That’s OK, I understand because I am big and intimidating and full of envelopes. Or maybe the next room over is so big that you have to walk a long way to get to my door. Please don’t go to all that trouble. I am not that important. Even though you would never get your letters without me, I am not that important. You are busy opening and reading those letters, after all.
But since you probably want to know, despite your busyness, I will tell you that I am a code reader, an intermediate stacker, and a giant set of counter-rotating drums with receptacles and boxes. I read the magnetic paint on each envelope by converting it into electric pulses. This tells me which receptacle is right for each letter. For each receptacle there’s an adjustable destination marker, and for each box there’s a fixed “key” formed by magnetically controlled protective-gas contacts. I take the information I get from reading the paint on the envelope and control the magnetisation of the receptacles so that when the right box and the right receptacle pass each other, I close the protective-gas contacts, the receptacle opens and the letter falls into the right box. It’s easy! I do a good job all the time! I am also thirty years out of date!
Now I will take a moment to answer all the mail that is sent to me, the Automatic Letter Sorter. There is only one letter, from a young girl named Paula F. who lives in the next room over. Paula asks: “Dear Sorter: When you convert the magnetic paint patterns into electrical impulses, does it ever hurt?” Hello Paula! I’m glad you asked me. Yes, Paula, it hurts. Every time.
Automatic Letter Sorter signing out!
Quote of the Moment: “The distinction between grits and hominy is specious.” – the Fiery One
I can’t stop reading Chez Miscarriage. She is brilliant and sad and warm and heartbreaking, all in good measure.