Saturday, November 8, 2008

Ugly Mailbox leads to Identity Theft

Have I ever told you how ugly my mailbox is? It's so homely that it's kind of cute!

My neighbors and I share a mailbox post and all our mailboxes are nailed to the post. The post sits in front of the house next door. All of our mailboxes are big ugly black rural boxes like you'd see on the highway for the farm up the lane. Not aesthetically pleasing but it does the job just fine.

One day, when I was still pregnant so this was at least a month ago, I went next door to get my mail and 3 of the neighbors were gathered at the mailboxes. I made the 4th, so we were only missing one neighbor for a complete mailbox pow-wow. One of my neighbors, lets call her Bea... I don't know her real name and she acts like she always has a bee in her bonnet, so I refer to her in my mind as Bea. Anway, Bea says to the group that she wants a new mailbox for our group of houses.

Bea is spouting her campaign for a new mailbox and everyone is quietly nodding along. She says we need a locking mailbox, one that looks nice and she will head up the purchase of it. She already spoke with the post office and she's been searching for a mailbox online for us to buy. Blah blah blah.... it'll only cost $200.

Whoa, wait a minute. $200 for a mailbox that we don't need? I piped up and asked for some clarification. $200 total? No, $200 each. Ohhhh, so its a $1000 mailbox! On the spot I voted no thanks to that.

But it locks.

So? I don't need my junk mail locked up.

Identity Theft is a big problem these days. You should consider that. If your mail isn't in a locked box someone could steal it and take your identity.

Anyone can do that anyway.

*Gasp* Its very dangerous to just leave your personal information out for the identity thieves! We need locking mailboxes to protect ourselves in this day and age!

How does a locking mailbox protect us if our mail carrier consistently puts the wrong mail in the wrong boxes. How did we all meet? Right here at the mailboxes trading mail.

This mailbox would look nice.

Ah, I don't care.

But! Um! Well!

(other two neighbors are awfully quiet)

You know, if you want to protect yourself from identity theft with a locking mailbox that looks nice, you could get a PO box and pick up your mail at the post office where it is safe and secure. Problem solved. You go there a lot anyway, so it would be convenient too. (she goes there to complain quite often) Or, you could buy the mailbox you want for all of us as a generous contribution to the neighborhood. I'm not saying I won't use it, but I am saying I won't pay for it.

Jim finally pipes up and says, "Maybe we could each get a mailbox in front of our own houses".

Bea likes this idea, she's going to the post office to see if they'll make 5 stops instead of one. Ok, gooooooooood luck with that.

Bea leaves and goes home with her handful of Capitol One credit card offers and Bath and Body works coupons addressed to Resident. I take my mail addressed to some guy who doesn't live here, Resident, and Postal Customer. Identity thieves, take that!

It has been a month or two since our mailbox pow-wow and I haven't seen Bea again. I think she still lives there. Three of my four neighbors (Bea is the 4th) thanked me for declining the grand mailbox (literally, a grand). Saved them from going in on it just so they wouldn't be the bad neighbor. You are most welcome, I'm happy to be the bad neighbor. We're all still getting our penny savers, credit card offers, pest control bill for the house down the street, flyers for the new chiropractor in town, and guitar center coupons in our ugly unlocked mailboxes.

1 comment:

Living With Cavemen said...

Glad to see that ugly mailboxes and a spacey mail man are keeping you safe from identity theft. :)