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Stamps

August 10, 1986

Thank you for the interesting front-page article on stamps by Penny Pagano (Aug. 4). What goes on to postage stamps is, indeed, serious business. At least that seemed to be true in China a decade or so ago.

In his book, "The Chinese," David Bonavia reports that during the Cultural Revolution, a European ambassador was summoned to the post office early one morning for a dressing down. It seemed that someone in his embassy had mailed a letter with a stamp showing Mao Tse-tung's portrait. Alongside it was a stamp with the picture of an archer, whose arrow was pointing in the direction of Mao's head! Thus the summons.

But that stage in Chinese history has long since passed. Today in the Peking Hotel lobby there is a bright red banner, with the following words emblazoned in bold, gold letters: "We Have Friends All Over the World." I suggest the next U.S. postage issue contain those words, and that we try to earn the reputation implied.

VANCE GEIER

Highland Park

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