Dear Mr. Postman,

(Or What I Wish I'd Said When He Visited)
Pardon my if I leave out the "jolly" for you were, alas, not a jolly postman. Thank you for your personal visit to my house. I know as the postal supervisor you are a busy man and I am honored that you would leave the office to visit.

I realize you have a Very Important task of getting people to switch over from on-the-house type of mailboxes to street mailboxes. Because this switch only happens when someone new purchases a house, though, all the mail deliverers still walk on foot and deliver to the door of the majority of homes in my town. Forgive me, then, if we didn't run right out and purchase the stand-alone mailbox the moment we moved in.

I can tell by the angry tremor in your voice (and the words accompanying them) that this is a frustrating and touchy issue for you. May I suggest that you might take a few deep breaths before visiting unsuspecting residents? Also, count to ten. I realize that our slow compliance was aggravating to you and that perhaps your anger wasn't just at me but at all of the many people who have been slow to comply over your 20+ year career. But keep in mind that we see the mailman walk up to our neighbors' doors every day. They get to keep theirs because they didn't just move? This change over will take 20 more years so a few extra weeks will surely not undermine the system.

See the plastic on the windows? That's because we haven't replaced the few spots of rotting wood yet. See how we don't have pictures on the wall? We haven't been able to get to that yet, either. Or replacing the dishwasher. Please don't take it personally. We have a list and we are getting to everything as fast as we can. Somehow mailbox replacement hasn't bubbled to the top as quickly as you seem to have expected.

Also, please remember this (and repeat to yourself as much as possible): It's. Only. A. Mailbox. Perhaps this could be your mantra during the meditation you evidently so sorely need.

p.s. We did order the mailbox and it will be delivered in the next couple of weeks. I guess your intimidation routine does really work!