LOGAN SQUARE — "In 2010, Marc Fischer experienced postal trauma when he moved away from his beloved Nancy B. Jefferson Post Office on the Near West Side and became a customer of the Roberto Clemente Post Office in Chicago’s Logan Square neighborhood."
So begins Marc Fischer’s love-hate affair with a certain neighborhood outpost, the Roberto Clemente Post Office, 2339 N. California Ave., as told through his new book, “Deliverance: Writings on Postal Relations.”
The 55-page publication of humor and observational musings from Soberscove Press comes via Facebook and Yelp; where Fischer detailed his experiences, up to three a week, for three years.
“When I looked over [the posts], I was startled by how much I had written, but it also flowed nicely as a piece of literature, like a radio play — these characters appear and go away and come back. Anyone who’s dealt with any kind of bureaucratic situation knows it,” Fischer said. “It just seemed like something people had no problem identifying with.”
On Jan. 5, 2011, Fischer, an Avondale resident, artist and publisher, began cataloging his encounters over three years at Logan Square’s central post office — including each and every slight, from soggy packages to customer service mishaps.
“Just stormed out of the Logan Square Post Office in disgust for probably the seventh time since I moved to this neighborhood,” reads the first line from the book. ”Just when it appeared that maybe things might be improving.”
To be fair, Fischer’s book details post offices from around the city, at varying levels of praise and disdain. “John at the Avondale Post Office” is fluent in the art of conversation and generally “a postal sensation," for example.
But Fischer saves his most dire warnings for patrons of Logan Square's 79-year-old postal hub, because "Deliverance" is about comparing shared experiences, he said — especially of a place "you go to over and over and over again."
“You notice all this stuff, like the quantity of bugs collected in the light fixtures. There’s a rhythm in how a place works, what its whole dynamic is,” he said. “It’s funny going to the post office and mailing copies of this book."
Fischer will host a reading of "Deliverance: Writings on Postal Relations" at the Richard J. Daley Library in Bridgeport, 3400 S. Halsted St., Dec. 9 at 6:30 p.m.
"The performance will convey the frustration, the anguish, the periodic and unexpected joy, and the frequent sorrow of Fischer, a man who mails a lot of stuff," reads an announcement for the show.
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