Wednesday, May 08, 2013

Taking Liberties

Fact No. One: My mailbox sits beside the road near the end of my driveway, a long stretch with a downhill slope that prevents me from seeing the mailbox from the house. Fact No. Two: I never--ever--put outgoing mail in that mailbox. I always take it to the post office.

Imagine my surprise, then, when I drove out to go grocery shopping and noticed the red flag up on my mailbox. I stopped the car immediately and got out to investigate. Inside the mailbox were two Netflix DVDs in their red return envelopes, no return address anywhere. How odd!

Who was using my mailbox? And why? My neighbors have their own boxes, so it wouldn't make sense for them to use mine. I was puzzled and mildly upset that someone would infringe on the sanctity of my private mailbox, but what could I do about it? I put the envelopes back in there, closed the lid, and went on to the store.

Since then I've given some thought to who might do such a thing. I don't think any of the adults who live nearby would mess with someone else's mailbox. There is one boy who conceivably might have rented movies he didn't want his father to know about, but he's a really nice kid, and I can't see him being presumptuous enough to invade someone else's space. The more I've thought about it, I've narrowed it down to one key suspect--someone new to the neighborhood, someone who arrived without invitation and shows no indication that he plans to leave anytime soon. That same someone has plenty of time on his hands as far as I can tell. He has no job. He goes out every night and spends most of his day alone in his little man cave, so it's reasonable to assume that he might seek out some form of home entertainment. It could be . . .

Nah! That's preposterous!

But what if . . .

C'mon! Don't be silly!

But think about it. We already know the new guy living at my house has a sense of entitlement. I think he could be the one using my mailbox to return his movies.

Yeah, right. And I think you're losing your mind.

I'm just sayin' maybe . . .


  1. That IS odd. Since you never use it for outgoing mail, this could have been going on for years without your knowledge. Just for kicks, I'd ask your mailcarrier how often he picks up mail from your box. Only odd thing I've found in my mailbox was an empty wine bottle. I was just thankful that the owner didn't throw it on the pavement and smash it.

    1. Val, good suggestion, but I can't see the mailbox from the house, so I'd have to drag a chair outside to a vantage point where I could wait and watch for the mail carrier. I'm afraid this is one of those cases in which my laziness trumps my concern over a potential problem. Also, I find your wine bottle way more interesting than my DVDs.

  2. I think I would have kept those dvds until someone knocked on my door!

  3. Holly, I think my life is more peaceful when I pick my battles. I've learned that just because I don't understand something doesn't mean there wasn't a good reason for it. Still, I'll pay closer attention from now on.


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