Not so sure how the writer would have regarded this effort, but the move to create a Charles Bukowski postage stamp doesn’t appear to be going well. Arguably L.A.’s most famous writer, Bukowski worked for the postal service until he was 49, and hated every second of it. Using some of the more delicate wording this Fishie has seen in quite some time, petitioners to the Citizens Stamp Advisory Committee call Bukowski’s first novel “Post Office,” “a wry portrait of the inner workings of the service” — which is a bit like saying “All the President’s Men” is a dry, clinical analysis of the inner workings of Nixon’s White House.
Full text of the petition after the jump.
I am writing to propose that the American novelist, poet and screenwriter Charles Bukowski be honored with a commemorative U.S. postal stamp to be issued on March 9, 2014, the twentieth anniversary of his death.
Charles Bukowski is uniquely suited for this honor. For in addition to being an acclaimed author with a growing international following, he is also perhaps the most famous American postal worker after Benjamin Franklin, and his landmark first novel “Post Office” is a wry portrait of the inner workings of the service where he was employed through age 49.
Bukowski’s popularity among readers is unquestioned, but he has recently received a pair of honors which speak to his abiding reputation in American letters. In February 2008, the small cottage where Bukowski lived for many years was named a Cultural-Historic Monument of the City of Los Angeles, and in 2006 his literary archives were acquired by the Huntington Library.
A Charles Bukowski postage stamp would be a worthy tribute to a gifted soul who transformed himself from a middle aged civil servant into an international literary lion, and who never lost his sensitivity towards the ordinary lives of the people of his hometown of Los Angeles. I hope that you will seriously consider this proposal at your next meeting.
As of this posting, with a week left to file, the petition has 379 supporters. Organizers were hoping for 10,000. So sign up now. Or drink yourself into a stupor. Whatever works for you.