Open Thread for July1 – Mr ZIP Makes His Debut

On this date in 1963 ZIP Codes were introduced in the United States.

This was scarcely a novel idea as the concept  of postal codes first arose in Germany in 1941.


106 thoughts on “Open Thread for July1 – Mr ZIP Makes His Debut

  1. Ah, the Zip Code… As someone that lives in a very rural area, my Zip Code is a local municipality which is part of a Republican controlled Congressional District. However, the physical location of my house is in a different Congressional District. So I’m always getting Republican junk mail and phone calls from someone that doesn’t represent my CD. I even tried adding the four extra numbers at the end and it still gets screwed up. I shouldn’t blame the Zip Code. It’s the Republican gerrymandering that has made a joke out of the CD’s in PA.

  2. Speaking of Republicans making jokes out of things, just for shits and grins, I signed up to get on Michelle Bachmann’s e-mail list. It was funny. They ask you to select the areas that interest you, and the only box to check is marked “General Interest”. You can sign up for your e-mails at

    It could be good for a laugh ot two.

  3. Mr ZIP used to scare the piss out of me when I was little.

    When I told my Mom I was scared of Mr ZIP, because I thought he was coming to my house, she told me that the zipcode only made it easier for Mr ZIP to find our house.

    That really didn’t help…

  4. Just slide a cribbage board and a deck of cards under there and you will be fine.

    Maybe a pizza every now and then.

    • BTW, I heard on Rachel’s show last night that “hiking the Appalachian Trail” is now in the Urban Dictionary, and it means “cheating on your spouse.” That was fast!

  5. The US now runs at the speed of sleaze. Somewhat faster than light but obviously less than a thought.

    My ex used to be baffled by the occasional cookie that turned up under my youngest’s bed. Both my daughter and I got very good at looking both innocent and perplexed as well. 🙂

  6. Time flies when you are having fun. Also when you are scared shitless. When you get both together?

  7. FleaBagDrivel finally got banned! Faith in the “report abuse” process restored!

  8. FleaBagDrivel finally got banned! Faith in the “report abuse” process restored!

    I noticed that in the comments. That’s good. I may start posting at TP again if they keep up the good work like that. Otherwise I’m staying away.

    • Wayne, the troll traffic seems to be down a bit. But they might be off cashing their welfare checks and collecting their food stamps. 😉

  9. Wayne, I may have found someone who can put a few of your parodies to music. If it works out I will try and get a copy that can be posted here.

  10. Here’s Mr. Zip’s theme song from the silly sixties:

    If you remember this song, what other useless information are you harboring in those dark recesses of your mind?

  11. med,

    That would be great. I would say the same thing to you that I would say to anyone who records my song parodies:

    1) I would like a writing credit for the additional lyrics (with the original writer properly credited, of course);

    2) I’d like to be able to download (or have a copy in some way) the song parody when it’s done. (Posting it here should work, as I can figure out a way to grab it and send it off to people);

    3) Most importantly – if there are any royalties due me from this (not that I expect any), I want them all (100% of them) donated to the USO, so they can help improve the morale of our troops overseas. This would be true even if one of the parodies became really, really popular and (somehow) made the artists performing it a lot of money. I want my share to go to the USO.

    And, thank you very much for your efforts.

  12. Zooey,

    I see they’re still letting hanshiro show up and bitch and moan about what TP is not covering. Seriously, that guy needs to be strongly encouraged to go start his own blog, like we did. 🙂

    So, I should wait before logging in again. Unfortunately, I can’t give anyone recommends unless I log in, and I won’t log in until I see things change for the better.

  13. At our car shop, when we were real busy, we sometimes had to re-arrange the cars when we finished one to get it out for pick up, and get the next one into a service bay. We called that, “playing musical cars”.

    The youtube thingy didn’t work like on music night. The link is good, just messy looking. I would have hid it in an Href if I could have anticipated that.

  14. Wayne, I would rather log in and give recommends without commenting, but I seldom comment there anyway. Without logging in, you can’t see the scoreboard. You wouldn’t watch the Mets without wanting to know the …..
    Never mind.

  15. House,

    As I am home sick right now, I was able to see them take the lead 1-0 in today’s game. I just hope the electrical storm we’re about to get doesn’t knock out the cable on the day the Mets finally end their losing streak. 😉

    As for not logging in at TP, I am hoping they notice that I haven’t. Unfortunately, I have to read through a bunch of old threads to see if they’ve addressed one of my pet peeves – the porn spammer. I told them (through abuse flags and directly by e-mail) that they could use their infamous comment filter to keep the Turkish spammer from posting. Just send any comments containing the letters s-e-s-l-i to the moderation bin. No English words contain those letters in that order, so it is highly unlikely that they would block the wrong comments this way. As of the last day I was logged in there (I think it was Friday), the porn spam was still there, usually on a dead thread.

    I did notice that they got rid of FML right away, and that’s always a good thing. No matter what its proponents say, the “Free Market” is not a good thing, especially an unregulated one.

  16. house, that’s the worst part, moving cars. The first thing my husband looks for in a garage is parking after our first garage was really short on spaces.

  17. I think hanshiro-alejandro-Stateofthedivision-Another Joe are all the same person. State has 3 sites and can’t get anybody to go with all his whining.

  18. Wayne, if I can do it the result will probably be along the lines of a recorded karoake number. Purely for fun.

    But all 3 requests would be honored and gladly. With a little luck the Nilson song will be available for Friday Night Music.

  19. Anything you can do would be enjoyed, med. Thank you. If I could find kareoke (sp?) versions of the songs, I might have tried “performing” them myself. I have a bit of a knack for imitating voices, and Jane seems to think that when I’m impersonating someone, I can sing in their voice, just not my own. I’m not sure I want to test her hypothesis publicly.

  20. Wayne,
    Sorry to hear you’re sick.

    “Just send any comments containing the letters s-e-s-l-i to the moderation bin.”

    Once their comments stopped appearing, they would probably modify the words slightly and go right back to spamming. That is frustrating I am sure. They need more moderating on weekends and holidays, and a good place to start would be this July 4th weekend.

    Why doesn’t Hanshiro-Another Joe put links to the stories they think are important on the Thinkfast thread? Maybe that gets stale after the morning, I don’t know. I do know there are blogs out there putting out a lot more variety and getting little if any trolls mucking things up.

    Well, it’s time to get packed up for work. Back in the early!

  21. Wayne, that Jane lady seems to be one smart cookie. There are karaoke versions of most of your parody songs on the web so you have nothing to lose. If you have a bit of a talent for parodying voices that would just make the joke that much more effective.

    I wish we were closer, geographically speaking. I’m having fun trying to bring your parodies to song and it would be a hoot to do it with the master.

  22. Thanks, med.

    house, hanshiro just did it again on the latest Bachmann thread. Complaining about what TP is not talking about and denouncing them for sticking to their “What We’re About” topics.

    OMFG! The Mets just won 1-0. Holy flurking schnitt!

  23. I will probably take a serious hit for this but hanshiro has a point. Thinking progress is about more than bashing the silliness of the Republicans.

    The most solid thread posted today on TP was the Dean thread. The others were pretty much about laughing at Republican stupidity.

    I wouldn’t mind seeing some more serious posts about what is actually being done (or not done) than poking fun at Joe and Shelly.

  24. Med, I kind of agree that some days TP resembles the tabloid section of HuffPo. Today, there are threads with Kristol sticking up for Palin, JoeTheIdiot’s latest stoopid rants, Inhofe calling Franken a clown, Dick Armey’s “Obama’s illiterate” on econ, Steele’s hypocrisy du jour, a few GNOPers backing away from Batshit Bachmann and now Newt’s meaningless thoughts on healthcare.

    Add a few more threads about Rush, BillO, Palin, FuxNews and Sanford’s latest soft porn statements and it’ll be a full day at TP.

    I think I need to spend some time in the Wonk Room, or with Yglesias.

    But it IS sad that we got rid of one of the worst trolls in recent memory only to have barfly and hansiro go at each other.

  25. Mom. I happen to be on Hanshiro’s side. I don’t always agree with his tactics but I agree with his complaints.

    I will not blindly follow President Obama, I will challenge him when I think he is wrong. But I believe he has the best interests of the country in mind.

    Same for hanshiro. He wants the promise. So do I.

  26. I know what you’re saying, med, but hanshiro had gotten to the point where (it seemed) on every single thread, he didn’t simply criticize TP for what they weren’t posting about, but he got pretty nasty about it in the process. And then insulted all of us for participating in the discussion about what the thread was about. Like I said, if he prefers to talk about something else, he can start his own blog and invite people there to discuss what he thinks is important. TP is under no obligation to post anything and everything that liberals have concerns about. They have their agenda, and if hanshiro’s pet projects and peeves don’t fit into that agenda, that’s hanshiro’s problem, not TP’s. (He could also try giving us a link to a blog that is discussing his topic of choice, but I rarely see him do that.)

    I guess my complaint with hanshiro is more about the way he goes about doing things, and less about what he is actually talking about. I mean, it would be no different for him to come to TheZoo and bitch and moan about the things we are not writing about. I’m sure the rest of the Critters would get sick of it pretty fast, too. I know I would.

  27. Mom & Med, I agree. Sometimes I wonder why TP is giving “legitimacy” to has-been concervative figures that otherwise do not ( or should not ) play a part of our national conversation. Who cares what Dick Armey, Tom Delay, Joe the non-anything, etc. etc. say? By posting their commnets, TP is giving them undue importance. Kinda like what happens with trolls.

  28. And, yes, I do wish TP would keep us better informed of when Obama is acting like his predecessor, but that is not the only concern I have.

    I’m a huge fan of Media Matters and the work they do. Conservative misinformation and deception does need to be pointed out and refuted, and quickly. One of the reasons that Republicans are able to get anybody elected to Congress is because they get away with misrepresenting the facts of the situation. We need places that will point out when they are doing this, especially when it’s a Member of Congress, but also when it’s an influential right-wing radio host.

    You may not remember this, but there was a time in this country when you could believe what you heard on TV because the truth mattered. But once conservatives managed to fool people into believing that they needed balance in their news, our media started giving equal credibility to the right-wing side of the debate (which was often wrong and not factually-based.) But people still continued to confuse advertsising laws with political talk show rules. They believed, “You couldn’t say it on TV if it wasn’t true.” Except that you could, as long as you weren’t trying to advertise a commercial product. But people don’t know that, so they assume that what they are hearing is the truth. And TP is trying to fight that by giving us information about the truth that we can use to counter the right-wing lies they spread.

  29. I agree Wayne. Check the Gingrich thread. I smacked him pretty good for being a crybaby. But he really does believe.

  30. Med! “Same for hanshiro. He wants the promise. So do I.”

    Do I detect some “hope” in that statement? hee hee 🙂

  31. krystal,

    I know what you’re saying, but it’s not as though we would know what lies the right wing is spreading because most of us are not fans of the right-wing media shows. When a Member of Congress stands up and urges her constituents to break the law, I think that needs to be reported a lot more than the MSM will do.

    I welcome any reliable information about the ways Obama is breaking his promises, but I do not ascribe to the theory that just because he hasn’t done a certain thing yet it means he won’t do it at all. I know he has to take his time and pick the right time to make the changes we need to make.

  32. And Wayne, I think I do remember when Walter said ‘and that’s the way it is’. And I believed him. I’m not sure but I think I have about a decade on you.

  33. Krystal, I am a grouchy, cranky old bear who gets real miffed when the younkers forget that we can do anything.

    Hope, you’d think only you younkers can feel it. Hrrrumph.

  34. I hear you Wayne! I want President Obama held accountable more than anything. Specially because I know he’s paying attention. Unlike that last monstrocity that inhabited the White House, Obama listens. I’ve adopted that stance of not involving myself with any troll agendas any more. Let then spew all the hate they want, they’re in the wrong place to influence anyone anyway.

  35. med,

    I turned 49 just this past June 13. There was a thread at TheZoo about it. 😆

    I remember Uncle Walter, and I remember trusting him even when I was a kid.

  36. Wayne, I figure I am somewhere between you and Walt. I hit the double nickle a few months ago. And I have a lot of respect for both of you.

  37. Wayne, I’m a Gemini too! June 5th, just one year apart. I love it when Med says ” you yonkers” 🙂

  38. I’m getting AARP membership invites lately, and I’m not close to retirement age! Hit the half-century mark and watch the targeted demographics mailing start changing…

    I’m waiting for “Save on Depends, coupons enclosed” next.

  39. Mom, silver linning is we are becoming smarter and more empowered with our voices as we age. At least that’s the trend I’m detecting.

  40. Old hippies. Frankly, we did a good job once, time to come out of mothballs.

  41. it is younkers, krystal. And you Geminis are always of two minds. We Aries are more direct, in a round about way. 😉

  42. Med, oooops, you’re right. Sorry, I better put some more ice on that scotch! :-).
    You know what they say…..two minds are better than one!

  43. Aquarius? That is an old hippie claim. Just because the stellar alignment and the song is big time, humpfh, no big deal.

    But I do like the song.

  44. Hey, I’m a February 13th baby! Aquarius is real to me! But I do aspire to be an old hippie, once I get the boy through college. For now, I’m just a cog in the wheel…

  45. “Once I get the boy through college”

    Most folks figure 18, out the door so your dream already marks you as an old hippie.

  46. Med, I’ve successfully gotten him through the 3rd grade, so I still have high hopes for college. Tomorrow I’ll wear tie dye if it makes you happy!

  47. Regarding Hanshiro. I’d like to say that now is not the time to point fingers, tomorrow is another day, the worm that laid the golden egg CAN become a swan, anything labeled “fun size” actually ISN’T, reaching across the aisle isn’t sexual unless you want it to be, and that the children are our future and so HOPE and also CHANGE–we used to be German donuts but we are all Iranians now. so “freem” everybody, and the gays don’t mind waiting, they have fabulous shows and high heels to put-on in the meantime!

  48. Michael Jackson’s memorial service may be held at the LA Coliseum? What a media circus! Just bury the guy already!

  49. 5th, I refuse to even try to understand the battle between barfly and hanshiro, but they both have some good things to say, and I’ll never forget hanshiro’s statement about how the MSM needs to be overthrown by journalists.

    So tomorrow I’ll wear tye die for the old hippies, and fabulous high heels as a show of support for gay rights.

    Anyone else need representation in my attire? If I’m gonna mix it up…

  50. Mark Sanford: “I will be able to die knowing that I had met my soul mate.”

    Jenny Sanford should put him out of his misery. No court would convict her.

  51. Seriously folks, I have a serious suggestion.

    Judging from the comments here about TP, it seems we all think it’s been trending a bit “tabloid” of late, and whilst it is fun to swat trolls it can also get a bit tedious—the tabloid-type posts certainly attract the crappiest trolls, which gets to be a huge drag pretty quickly.

    So I’m thinking we could collaborate on a letter to TP expressing our concerns and thoughts, and all ‘sign’ it. But we would have to define our arguments and intent and how it would fit with the rest of the TP family of blogs.

    Maybe we could influence TP for the better–or maybe in discussing it we’ll determine that it really is fine as it is.


  52. spencersmom…

    thanks for responding , I just went doolally there on the hanshiro thing! 😀

  53. I’m going to have to articulate myself a bit better regarding my above suggestion. but i haven;lt thought it through yet.

    However I guess I’m asking everyone here; how (and why ) could TP be a bit “wonkier” and more substantive, without necessarily becoming The Wonk Room?

    Could a variety of established, smart, informed and recognized TP commenters have their own TP ‘space”? Or could The Zoo become that, as an adjunct site?

    Is there anything really wrong with just having a laugh and trading barbs on TP? It CAN be a lot of fun, but it can be a drag too.

    Should TP set up a Stupid Politician page and Common Current Issues page, interlinked, where everyone can easily switch between having fun and being serious ( both pages having appropriate TOS rules) according to whim, without trying to tread on Wonk Room territory?

    Sometimes a stupid or flippant remark on a relatively frivolous TP thread will inspire me to “essay” instead of going with the flow, or to write something quite elaborately comedic (hopefully!). so the ‘tabloid’ stuff isn’t necessarily as shallow as it may seem .

    NB misscoleopteramolly always seems to create substance out of fluff and snot no matter what, and so does Wayne (others too, but molly and Wayne come immediately to my mind).

    I’m just noodling…

    Thoughts? (Don’t worry, I won’t be crushed if everyone says, great idea but there’s chores to be done!)

  54. “Should TP set up a Stupid Politician page and Common Current Issues page”

    5th, I think you might be on to something there. May I suggest “GOPidiocy” as a suggested sub-thread title? It combines GOP, pity and idiocy which dovetail nicely. Of course, we have our own set of idiots with (D) after their names.

    As Wayne said, MediaMatters does a great job covering, well, the media, and TPM’s Muckraker is without parallel in their arena.

    FWIW, I think TP does better when there is an election cycle underway. The ThinkFast day’s news is great, too, but then the fluff threads soon follow and by afternoon, it’s sad.

    But I’m fairly new in the grand scheme of things.

  55. 5th,
    We at the Zoo are starting to get more traffic from TP as the recent onslaught of trolls rolls in. Our own crew as well as sp’smom come immediately to mind. We are currently on hold as we wait for some sense of direction from the Obama administration. I have not canceled the topmost ‘Gnu’ sidebar and will not until things iron themselves out. I could be overruled.
    Just in case you have not noticed, we are not in the least bit organized, we only share a common cause, whatever that is.

  56. Sorry I went away there for a while. We had an electrical storm in the area and I thought it best (this time) to shut down the computers. I am back, and I’m sure Jane will join us shortly.

    spencersmom (I cannot shorten your name to ‘mom’, since my mother reads this blog, and she gets easily confused, starts asking questions, wouldn’t wish it on anybody),

    I believe that you can join AARP once you reach the age of fifty. You do not have to be retired (I believe). If so, you can take advantage of all their benefits. It’s up to you if you wish to change your behavior accordingly, but we love you the way you are. 🙂


    “substance out of fluff and snot “???

    I was unaware of my fame in working with the medium of snot. I tended to think that was a personal, private matter. But I accept your compliments in the spirit in which they were meant. Thank you. 🙂


    I had to go back and find the Nilson one you were talking about. (“Everybody’s Walkin'”?) I love that song (and I liked my parody of it, too.) Thank you if you can get it done. (Note that I said “it” and not “‘r'”. 🙂 )

    And I like the idea of 5th’s group letter idea. I have addressed certain issues in my own e-mails to them, and the group as a whole is certainly under no obligation to sign onto my own ideas. Any on which there is no consensus can be dropped from the group letter. I can always add my own thoughts separately. I’ve e-mailed them before. 😉

  57. Walt…

    I like to think of The Zoo as a proper British Pub, not some specifically-tasked Legion Hall (or the Batley Women’s Institute hell-bent on re-enacting every major historical battle with handbags, in mud, as their sole reason for existence) and therein lies the appeal– an amalgam of conviviality and passion and personality and perspective and experience and mutual respect, with nary a bar-fight, where all well-behaved amusing and interesting strangers are welcomed into the fold ( but NO PIKEYS!)


  58. Walt..

    re: my “pub” analogy:
    So my noodling about actively ‘affiliating’ as it were with TP would be a ruinous act—so forget that everyone (especially Zooey!).
    I agree with you not changing the ‘Gnu’ section yet.

  59. 5th,

    Don’t know if you’ve noticed, but they did add TheZoo to their blogroll. So they’ve already “affiliated” themselves with us. (We link to them, too.)

  60. spencersmom

    ROFL your Sanford ‘soulmate’ comment!

    Yes Media Matters is brilliant and very clinical which is admirable.
    Crooks & Liars seems to have pioneered video evidence in support of political commentary, and now they have a Video Cafe’.

    I think there may be some room for something in between that TP could do perhaps.

    But as for you being fairly new in the scheme of things?!!!

    You may be fresh as a dew-kissed daisy, but you are spencersmom—which makes you just as wise as a latina! 😀

  61. sp’smom,
    Enroll in AARP, but do not enroll in their health insurance plan just yet. There are a few pitfalls!. Not all of them are fixed yet!

  62. Med, I just listened to the Joni Mitchell song. Funny! BTW, I resemble that song!!!

    5th ….”an amalgam of conviviality…”. I love that choice of words. To me, the Zoo is almost like a “corner bar”, where a community of ideas come together and get tossed with comedic dressing.
    Anyone else hungry?

  63. sort of… This conference thing is really starting to piss me of. One more day….

  64. krystalviews : “where a community of ideas come together and get tossed with comedic dressing”

    I think that’s known in behavioral-science circles as ADD.


  65. “…fabulous high heels as a show of support for gay rights.

    Anyone else need representation in my attire?”

    The high heels will work for me, but I’m not gay!

    I’ll sign on to most anything you guys come up with, as long as it doesn’t turn TP into Huffpost. Back to work!

  66. “…you yonkers”

    Hey, someone mention my birthplace? 😉

    Re: Hanshiro – considering how well he(?) writes, I would think that he’d submit posts to TP as a guest blogger. I think that he’d do a really good job.

  67. dbad…

    sorry I’m a bit behind… you are on some business junket learning how to maximize synergy for a more translateral management experience whilst maintaining forward growth potential on a vertical added-value vector? Something like that, right?

  68. Thanks Jane!
    5thstate – It is an ed deal. Curriculum alignment and assort other bullshit. I was impressed that they have managed to use the pretend word “delimit” at least 8 times now…

  69. Jane…

    Hanshiro DOES keep apprised of a variety of major issues on a regular basis and provides smart subject matter sources.
    I’d say he/she’d be a helluva lot better than me for example as an official TP poster. Consistent and substantive. ( I sure don’t have the mental discipline for such a responsibility). .

  70. I’m behind the idea of a group letter to TP and as a Zoo newbie (Zoobie? Zewbie?) I’m certain there are other TP regulars who would sign as well.

    And Walt, I don’t wanna enroll in AARP yet. I’m in denial, just renewed my subscription to Tiger Beat because David Cassidy is soooo cute.

  71. dbadass….

    AH! I share your anispeptic pericombobulations and offer my sincerest contrafibularities!

  72. Well, we were somewhat successful the last time we got together and pressured TP. Faiz is always responsive to our emails, since we seem to be among the more respected of the TP regulars.

  73. spencersmom

    my bro got his AARP membership last year ( at 50). He’s in denial too about his age, but he’s happy for the bennies (though I confess I don’t know what they are yet).

    Oh BTW, I met David Cassidy when I was a publicity photographer in the eighties in NYC, and he was very nice (and annoyingly good looking). I also met Florence Henderson on another occasion and she was quite saucy and delicious, also very kind too.

    Anyhwoo, I guess I should work something up as a proposal of sorts (for TP)… and then we can pass it around and muck about with it and see if we can agree on anything we are prepared to sign our names to.

    If we do this within The Zoo, then we can offer it to presently non-Zoo trusted TP denizens and see what they think too, before sending it off.

  74. I have a firefly in my house. Sign of good fortune? Or sign I need new screens?

    …since we seem to be among the more respected of the TP regulars.

    Indeed you are, Lady Jane.

  75. No Jane I have not killed anyone yet but I have let loose with a slew of my patented dreadfully sarcastic one liners on some of the more annoying folks. The crew leading this thing are actually mostly MILFs of all things and they seem sort of enamored by my cynicism…

  76. Jane

    Well if we have Faiz’s ear, all we need is a coherent ‘position paper’; which as I suggested it, it is my duty to initiate as a first draft, which we can all mess about with— I mean ‘hone’ to a precision sharpness of exemplary hoo-hah and such. And see what happens. afterwards.

    Nothing ventured, nothing gained right?

  77. dbadass….

    it’s that cynical yet sensitive bad-boy image that’s working for you, isn’t it?

    MILF: So…what do you do for fun?

    DBADASS: I kick trolls in the metaphorical nuts with a combination of Boolean argument and Machiavellian sarcasm on the Think Progress blog. They call me ‘badass’

    MILF: Oooh! That’s HOT!

    That’s how ti goes right? 😀

    • I can’t leave you people alone for a minute! 😆

      Here’s an idea, instead of telling TP how to shape up their act, why not just do it here? It’s certainly worth some discussion!

  78. houseofroberts at 7:33 pm

    “I’ll sign on to most anything you guys come up with, as long as it doesn’t turn TP into Huffpost.”

    Zooey at 11:21 pm

    “Here’s an idea, instead of telling TP how to shape up their act, why not just do it here? It’s certainly worth some discussion!”

    I’ll sign on to that especially also!

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