Did you know that U.S. mail carriers can give you a parking ticket? Well, not really. But they can leave you snarky little notes. Yesterday I went to my daughter’s house and parked on the street, careful to not block their mail box. I am a law-abiding citizen, after all. And polite. But apparently I am not law-abiding or polite enough because when my son-in-law came home from work, he was waving a parking-ticket-like piece of paper and laughing. “The mail carrier is mad at you,” he said. The paper was printed with 19 infractions, complaints and transgressions regarding residential mail boxes and according to the emphatic and accusatory black-ink circle, I had broken No. 9: “The approach to your box should be kept clear of snow, vehicles and other obstacles.” Sooorrrrryyyy. Let’s get the measuring tape out, shall we? But what really got me was all the other 18 home-mailbox rules that potentially could be contravened, such as “No. 2 — The door needs attention:” “Nos. 5-6 — Box should be raised/lowered __ inches;” “No. 10 — The signal flag needs attention;” and “No. 18 — Your box should be painted to prevent rusting.” Who knew? The note goes on to say that the Postal Service might stop delivering mail until you raise/lower, paint or whatever. But what about all the dilapidated, rusted, dented, falling-down and falling-apart mailboxes I see all the time? Do they get snarky little notes, too? It’s like all the people who speed past you on the interstate and then you get stopped for doing 3 miles over the limit. Sigh. And then in related news — how’s that for former newspaper-reporter lingo? — I read this morning that the Postal Service is removing its blue collection boxes because fewer people are using them. Coincidence??? I think not.
Published by shoalswriter
I'm a freelance writer, editor and marketing consultant focusing on style, history, food and the arts in Alabama, Mississippi and Tennessee. I'm also an adjunct journalism instructor and writing coach. My husband is a newspaper sports editor, and he and I are from middle Tennessee. Older Daughter and her husband, an artist and high-school art teacher, live nearby with our three young grandsons. Younger Daughter works in PR and event planning and also lives nearby. View all posts by shoalswriter