No Pity for Exurb Mailbox Experiences

On Saturday, as I sat on the front porch of my Nairobi house numbered home, I greeted my neighbourhood mailman.

With a smile and a stack of bills, he climbed the stairs to my stoop and we had a moment of laughter around mail mis-sent to my place instead of forwarded to the previous owners. This little moment is one of the many reasons I love me some Petworth.

And the convenience of home mail delivery is yet another reason why I wonder about the mental capacity of folks who move way out to random suburbia. Take this weekend’s WashPost article “You’ve Got Mail . . . a Block Away” with the choice quote:

“This house is our dream. It’s got everything — all the bells and whistles,” Hamilton said. But, he added, “you deserve to have a nice mailbox in front of your house. I don’t think that those cluster boxes are pleasing to the eye.”

Sitting on her front porch, staring ruefully at her freshly planted garden of shrubs and flowers, Hall said she did not find out that the subdivision would have only communal mail delivery until after she moved into her $525,000 home.

And I can’t take a moment to mourn either people. They are the ones who moved out to the edge of existence, trading sensible population density for exurb sprawl. They are the ones who think new subdivisions sprouting up in farmland, serviced by long drives in SUV’s, are a good thing.

To the city-dwelling rest of us, this photograph from the article perfectly captures our feelings on the matter: let them walk!

9 Comments so far

  1. Ex-Hy Hy (unregistered) on June 18th, 2007 @ 1:32 pm

    Ugh. Gross.

  2. Evil Moo (unregistered) on June 18th, 2007 @ 1:47 pm

    Why do we even have the Garbage Delivery Service… er… Postal Service anymore? My block-away box is filled with physical spam, and bills I pay online. I would like my block-away box a lot more if it had an easy-to-use “RETURN TO SENDER” slot that would route all this trash back to the originating offender.

  3. Sligo (unregistered) on June 18th, 2007 @ 2:05 pm

    Hey, at least they have a secure place to drop their mail. In Silver Spring they took away most of the neighborhood mailboxes.

  4. anon (unregistered) on June 18th, 2007 @ 2:34 pm

    Except we all know they’re just going to drive their fat asses from their house to the mailbox anyway.

  5. Wayan (unregistered) on June 18th, 2007 @ 3:03 pm

    Oh Anon you had to spoil all the fun with a dose of reality. Of course they will drive – I bet these neighbourhoods will not even have sidewalks. And if they did, pedestrians would be arrested for probable cause.

  6. Carl Weaver (unregistered) on June 18th, 2007 @ 3:31 pm

    Looks like a shitty place to live. Yeah, I’m in Arlington, which counts as the boonies to Wayan and his ilk, but it’s not too far, we have sidewalks and easy, convenient public transportation. We don’t have the interesting stuff that goes on in DC, for good and bad, but at least I am constantly amused by my neighbor, who is always in trouble with some form of county bureaucracy for something.

  7. Ex-Hy Hy (unregistered) on June 18th, 2007 @ 3:34 pm

    Dang Carl, a little pre-emptive VA WD there or what? Yikes!

  8. Daniel (unregistered) on June 18th, 2007 @ 4:04 pm

    Yeah, imagine… these people might have to meet their neighbors if they go to the box… the horror…
    We are such a nation of entitlement. They are getthing their mail and USPS doesn’t go broke supporting the sprawl insanity… if anything the Postmaster should make this mandatory for all new developments…

  9. Wayan (unregistered) on June 18th, 2007 @ 4:34 pm

    While I couldn’t live in Arlington, I do like approach to controlling sprawl. A little late to save Rossyln or Crystal City, but the Wilson Boulevard stretch is refreshing in its density. To me and the mailman.

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