This is a true story: When I went to my doctor for a recent physical I decided to ask him for advice about relieving stress in my life. His response was immediate. He said, "I think you should try writing for relaxation."

I snickered, then stared in disbelief. He was deadly serious. Finally, I said, "I don't think that will work - you see I write for a living.""Oh," he said,

Now we all know that my doctor doesn't read the Deseret News. 4

Now those jars of pennies you've been saving will finally come in handy. The governing board of the U.S. Post Office has decided to raise postal rates to 29 cents - not 30. In case you haven't figured it out yet, this means that we will all need pennies to buy stamps - or at least that we will get one back.

This is being done at a time when the U.S. Mint has been seriously considering withdrawing pennies from circulation altogether. It makes you wish the government would coordinate its interests a little better. Why not round off the new rates to 30 cents and increase the level of postal service while making life less complicated for all of us?


Actually, I didn't realize that he was gone. Then I read full-page newspaper ads and observed unwieldy billboards trumpeting MARK IS BACK.

So I said, "What's the deal? Has Welti retired already?"

"No," people told me. "Mark has just joined the weather team at Channel 5 and he will help with the weather now until Welti retires."


So weather reporting is so important that we need a team of weathercasters to give it to us? How come Welti needs any help?

But since Mark is back, why not just turn the entire anchor desk over to him?


It's that time of year again. FYI, the irrepressible newsletter of the Salt Lake County Personnel Division, so ably edited by Jill Olsen, has published its Best and Worst issue. Some highlights:

BEST AND MOST ORIGINAL USE OF A LIBRARY BOOK - The young man who returned a paperback copy of Shakespeare's "Henry V" with autographs of several Jazz players (and Hot Rod Hundley) to Riverton Library. He explained that he already had the autographs - his sister just needed an excuse to talk to the players.

WORST CASE OF BEING RATTLED - The man who called AT&T Information, stating it was an emergency and wanted the number for 911.

BEST RECYCLER OF THE YEAR - David Marshall, administrative aide to former Commissioner Tom Shimizu, was collecting cans for recycling. After putting them in the bottom of his empty garbage can, he climbed in and began jumping on them to smash them flat. As fate would have it, the can tipped over and Marshall broke both arms. Staffers had to help feed him his lunches, and his wife dressed him each morning.


Have you been victimized lately by electronic hassling generated by the computer age?

Even when you have an urgent need and are not in the mood for delay, you call just about any company and you get this lengthy recording that says, "Thank you for calling the Friendly Undertaker. If you are calling from a rotary phone, please hang up and call 1-800-581-DEATH, and an operator will assist you. If you are calling from a touch tone phone, you may reach an operator any time during this recording by pressing zero - unless you are a zero.

"If you are calling for mortuary hours, press 1. Press 2 for funeral arrangements, press 3 for coffins, press 4 for cemetery plots, press 5 for funeral clothing, press 6 for embalming fluid, press 7 for pallbearers, press 8 for cost breakdown and press 9 for nervous breakdown. If further assistance is desired, press 0, or stay on the line and an operator will be with you shortly."

I'm definitely not staying on the line. It would just be too depressing.