Maybe things are changing at the US Patent Office.
I filed an original design patent on February 6 of this year and received a notice of allowance dated April 18. That is a mere pendency of 71 days. It will likely take the PTO longer to get the application through the publication process than the entire examination process. I thought that it took longer than that just to get through the Office of Initial Patent Examination.
This application was filed on paper, not electronically. Further, the examiner cited 13 references in the notice of allowance.
I suppose I should take credit for such a speedy allowance, although it may be hard to guarantee that kind of turn around in the future.