1-24  The First Twenty-Four
25-48  The Second Twenty-Four
49-72  The Third Twenty-Four
73-96  The Fourth Twenty-Four
97-120  The Fifth Twenty-Four
121-144  The Sixth Twenty-Four
145-168  The Seventh Twenty-Four
169-on  The Eighth Twenty-Four

121  TV Shows That Never Were - 3
122  Genealogy Kicks - 2
123  TV Shows That Never Were - 4
124  From Land to Lindbergh
125  Pono In Dreamland - I
126  Pono In Dreamland - II
127  Licensed to Drive
128  TV Shows That Never Were - 5
129  Colon Cancer Surgery
130  CC Reattachment
131  CC Chemotherapy
132  CC Personal Review
133  A Trip to Maine - 1
134  A Trip to Maine - 2
135  TV Shows That Never Were - 6
136  Lucky I Live South Maui
137  The Rest of South Maui
138  The Family Birdman
139  My Plumeria Tree
140  TV Shows That Never Were - 7
141  Pono Slept Here - I
142  Pono Slept Here - II
143  TV Shows That Never Were - 8
144  Collecting Postal Strips




I really don’t know how to introduce this subject, so I will just barge in and start talking.  You probably are well aware that I am collector.  I have seriously and formally collected coins, stamps, golf balls, and ancestors, and casually collected other objects.

Coins and stamps involved significant costs for the collectibles alone – to collect a quarter costs at least 25 cents.  Unused stamps usually cost at least face value.  Displays and containers for collectibles were also costly.  Access to ancestry data varied from free to some costs for membership.   Logo golf ball collecting was nearly free.  The first year of collecting I found 4000 balls by simply beating the roughs!  (Most of them were, of course, not very good condition and/or without logos).

Walking around in Maui, I have found shiny objects that turned into a collection costing zero!

Shiny objects

Turtle ring, zipper pull, motorcycle control cover, game token, zipper pull, reflector, heart, plastic wedge, ring, jewelry anchor, silver star, jewel, fuse, gadget in middle.

Recently, I have spent many hours preparing a category of items that fascinated me and that kids might use as games, collections or whatever.  The collectibles are free and could be accumulated by anyone who gets mail!

The items are the active top sections of envelopes, packages, cards, etc. involved in the incomings and outgoings of our postal system.  I call them postal strips.  Namely, the interesting items include return address, USPS imprints, postage machine imprints, stamps, messages, and any other visible attributes.

Preparation consists of trimming off parts of the item that might be uninteresting or private.

I could imagine (myself) collecting by:

Size, Paper color, Postal classification, Stamp value, Postal machine value, Return address, Uniqueness, Duplicates, Etc.

Sample strips

Here are five random samples of the entire postal strip items after trimming.  Other sample groups do not include the entire strip, but concentrate on the attribute(s) discussed.

Postal meter samples   Postal meter samples

Postage meter images contain a wealth of information.  This sample group is sorted by postal value, but they could be sorted by zip code, date, postal class, or even brand of meter!

Message samples

Messages may be placed almost any place on an envelope and are perfect for collectors since they may have any subject!

 Image samples

Images also are virtually infinite and can appear on any part or all of an envelope.

Oddly stamped samples

I’ll let you figure out what these strips mean.  Certainly part of the mystery of postal strip collecting!



I estimate that I currently have about a thousand postal strips.  I guess that, like most folks, I would add about twenty a week from normal mail receipts.  Let’s say we have three kids who want to participate in this collection game.

To introduce the game, we would provide a large envelope, box or folder for each kid, starting with a “randomly” sorted ten strips and the first “Postage Hour” would be an examination of the strips and identification of the collectible nature of the attributes.  The images in this Ponogram might provide a source for discussion.

Subsequent weekly or bi-weekly Postage Hours would be the addition of another ten strips to each participant and a guided joint session of incorporating the new additions.

As collections progress, we might help them list interesting categories and samples.  As participants progress, they may specialize and trade strips.  We might also expect questions like:

What are postal classifications?  First class, pre-sorted first class, non-profit organization, etc.

Explain messages.  Many are obvious, many come from charities, and some are truncated.

What are Zip codes?  I’ll bet you can handle this.

Challenge – get strips with references to the most states.

Challenge – get strips with most unique values, return addresses, etc.



I really enjoyed this, but then I’m a collector.  If my “target audience” fails to show an interest, I will be all over the postal meter images.  There seems to be no limit to unique values and if there is a limiting factor it would be finding a source for strips!