mailbox baseball, and the assholes who play it.

Last week, I put up a new mailbox to replace the one our town plow mangled last winter. Yesterday, some little punk-ass douche did a drive-by and dented the living crap out of the brand new mailbox. I just finished hammering out the dents and reattaching the metal bracket that holds the box on the post. That’s an hour of my time spent on fixing the end result of someone else’s malice.

People suck, I swear. Where’s the fun in smashing someone else’s stuff?

And no, I can’t put up a bash-proof mailbox. We can’t do the brick enclosures or sheet-steel-box-on-truck-axle kind of constructions, because the plows can get damaged if they run into those. (Funny how the damage consideration goes only one way, but I digress.)

It is enough to drive one to misanthropy, it is.

34 thoughts on “mailbox baseball, and the assholes who play it.

  1. reuben says:

    Snow plows don’t run in the summer do they? Looks to me like you might have a couple months to teach the kid a lesson.

  2. Dirk says:

    I’d figure out a way to have easily-interchangeable mailboxes – one that might actually just fall over easily and take little damage for snowplow season, one that’ll stand up to a small car hitting it for the rest of the year. Of course, these days, you put something like that up, you might wind up getting sued by some jerk who took a swing at it and hurt himself.

  3. Justin Buist says:

    You know those rubber pole things that you sometimes see in parking lots? The kind where if you hit them they just bend at the base and snap back into place?

    I kinda want to put my mailbox on one of those.

  4. Robert says:

    If you take the principle of the quintain and apply it to a mailbox, you’d have an effective deterrant of delinquents.

  5. geekWithA.45 says:

    One of my neighbors embedded a standard mailbox inside of a large size mailbox, padded by cement.🙂

    • ZerCool says:

      This. Go one step further to make it plow-proof by hanging it from chains on a set-back pole.

    • LittleRed1 says:

      That’s what I was going to suggest. And set the pole so that it will go through the radiator of a big pickup, or up the hood of a small one if they decide to run it over. Not that I have ever done anything like that, ever seen it done, or heard about the results of said experiment.

  6. Fred2 says:

    There’s 2 solutions

    Swing arm. Mount the pole back 10ft from the road, put the solid box on an arm that pivots, add springs to return to battery, once it’s been battered.

    Rig some kind of surveillance cam, photo the bastards and turn their asses in ot the local constables with pictures.

    • Ruth says:

      the ‘hunter cams’ used by hunters to track game on trails would work fine for this, you can get halfway decent ones for less than $100 too if you shop around. they’re motion activated, so you’d get lots of general car pics of you have much traffic, but should net you a fine shot of the vandals. There are even nicer ones that use an infra-red flash so they’d not even have a warning.

  7. Peter says:

    Dig a hole. Embed pipe in concrete in the hole. Mount new mailbox on a pipe of a smaller diameter, which slides into embedded pipe. Presto!

  8. Sigivald says:

    What Fred said.

    Motion-activated IP camera, and turn the little shits in if they do it again.

  9. Rick O' Shea says:

    One word: Tannerite…

  10. TXGunGeek says:

    Thick Steel box and pole with a break away bolt on the bottom. Still going to give the swinger a hand ache.

  11. Carteach says:

    I once had that problem, in another place. Regular thing, many nights…. seemed to be a common sport.
    I had my mail held at the post office, where I picked it up every few days. At home, I filled a mail box with sack-crete and put it on the post.

    One night, we all heard them coming again, as some kid drove along with his buddy hanging out the window swinging the wooden bat.

    I know it was a wooden bat, because I found it’s remains around my un-dented concrete filled mail box the next morning. It made a hell of a sound when they hit it as they went along smashing all the mail boxes. Kind of a ‘bang…. bang….. bang… bang….. CRAAAAACK!!!

  12. vanderleun says:

    Carteach, I was going to relay the exact same advice but you beat me to it.

  13. Just stick a claymore in there…

  14. DaddyBear says:

    Sounds like good excuse to sit on the porch drinking gin and mumbling about those damn kids.

  15. Sarah says:

    Rubbermaid makes USPS-approved mailboxes; being some sort of plastic, they’re more difficult to bash in than the thin-metal varieties. I don’t have firsthand knowledge of how well this works, though. We have a box made out of diamond-plate steel; a neighbor gave it to us after he destroyed our crappy box while trying to get a long, flatbed trailer turned onto our road. You can’t bash our box with a bat, but it’s not so securely mounted in the ground that it’ll damage heavy equipment. The box is welded to the pole, which we sank directly in the ground without any concrete.

    One of my grandma’s neighbors got sick of kids destroying his box. He finally sank a steel pipe in the ground so that he could put his mailbox pole in it during the day. The mail ran in the early afternoon there and the gentleman was retired, so he’d pull up the box right after the mail truck left.

    • Leadhead says:

      The one problem I’ve seen with the “plastic” mailboxes is people will soak them with lighter fluid and set them on
      fire.

  16. Jared says:

    PUt up 2 mail boxes. Fill the up the road one with concrete.

  17. og says:

    you can buy heavy iron mailboxes and posts with coil springs inn the base. a plow can hit one with no damage to it or to the plow.

    an infrared camera system with multiple cameras and a digital video recorder can be had at harbor freight for $250. a nice security system even after the miscreants have been sent to the stripey hole.

  18. Bill says:

    How about an accelerometer mounted to the mailbox to trigger a cannon filled with canister shot ……too much?

  19. One guy’s vandal-proof mailbox:

    (1) 12ft I beam
    (1) large mailbox
    (1) regular size mailbox
    concrete or cement

    Dig a hole 9 ft deep. Put in the I-beam and fill the remainder of the hole with cement or concrete. Partially fill the larger mailbox with concrete or cement. Insert the regular sized mailbox. Let the cement or concrete cure and then mount it onto the I beam. When somebody tries to play mailbox baseball with this box setup, the person will likely have a broken bat and maybe a broken arm if you are lucky. If a crazy plow driver tries to take out the post with his plow, I wouldn’t be surprised if his plow truck had some major problems.

    Even if you can’t use the I-beam, the concrete enclosed regular box sounds doable?

  20. Larry says:

    One Halloween our mailbox fell prey to a pumpkin pitcher.

    Although having to put the mailbox back up was irritating, I had to admire the targeting acumen of whoever could pitch a pumpkin with such accuracy from a moving pickup bed.

    They did catch the pitcher, her (yes her) dad was not amused. He paid for (and performed) the mailbox repairs in exchange for not having charges pressed, and she had to go around to all the victims and apologize, in person. Hopefully she learned something about respecting the property of others.

  21. sasu says:

    I heard a story of a home owner whose mailbox was on a dirt road on the outside of a nice curve. Often people were driving too fast, overshot the curve and destroyed his mailbox.

    The home owner finally installed a really thick steel beam for the mailbox to stand on. After that he started collecting car fenders that were left by the mailbox.

  22. My wife and I moved into a new home and got “dinged” twice in a month within three months of living there. In our case, the mailboxes were knocked off their perch and sitting in our front yard. Needless to say, we started to wonder if the prior residents had “issues” with neighbors…or it was something we did in our short time there…by the time it happened a fourth time (now over a period of two years) we pretty much figured out 1) no need to make repairs fancy or have a high-priced mailbox…2) no need to worry about why it was happening or who was doing it because others on our road (very highly travelled) were also having the same problems. It calmed down after that…maybe because we frustrated the perps by just putting the same box and post back up and NOT doing anything to make it harder for ’em. Still, if I had seen who was doing it…well, let us not go there.

  23. One year when I was a kid, a gang of kids smashed mailboxes along our (rural) road. So far as I know, they never caught them.

    Our closest neighbor who shared a mailbox post with us bought a special mailbox that was supposedly “bulldozer proof”. Their mailbox survived the rash of smashings…but then some idiot shot a bullet through it, and through our mailbox as well. Guess it wasn’t bulletproof.

  24. Jay G. says:

    Never hit any mailboxes with my plow, back in the days when I had a plow truck. Now, if you left your trash barrels on the street for more than 12 hours after trash pickup, they were fair game.

    You have any idea how far a plastic 45 gallon trash can will fly when hit by a 7½’ Fisher plow at 30 MPH?

  25. Ward says:

    My mother bought an old milk can and filled it mostly full of concrete and then stuck a post in that as an anchor for the mailbox. The post was probably about 7-8″ in diameter and about 5 feet long all told. She then attached a steel mailbox to it. It was resistant to stupidity like you describe and could be moved (not easily, but it could be moved) back from the roadside in the winter to allow the plow to go by without hitting it. The whole assembly weighed enough that it took my father and another strong person to move it.

    I think someone did hit it once, ’cause we found what looked like bits of either a bat or a fairly good sized stick in the yard, and it had been turned a bit, but damage was minimal (mom had to re-paint one part of the mailbox – that was about all).

  26. Chris says:

    Use a standard post but make mailbox itself out of a piec of cold rolled steel tubing or cod rolled sheet about 1/4 thick.. Worked great at our archery club.. Found busted bat in road. Cracked everyone up

  27. og says:

    Here’s the mailbox you need to buy.

    http://www.steelmailbox.com/html/veeders_stainless_steel_mailbo.html

    USPS approved, broken bats guaranteed.

  28. BS philosopher says:

    Center a water-filled 2 liter soda bottle in a standard USPS approved rural mailbox. Fill the gap around the bottle with concrete up to the edge of the mailbox. When the concrete is set, drain and remove the soda bottle. You now have a bat-resistant mailbox that externally resembles a standard steel box, but with the added benefit of a hollow 1.5 inch thick concrete cylinder inside of it. The resulting void created by removing the soda bottle is plenty good sized for mail and you really want your mail person to take packages to the porch anyway.

  29. thomas says:

    The county highway engineer sent me a nice letter asking me to remove he auger shaft that had served as mail box post for many years, It had to be replaced with no more than a 4×4 post for safety reasons. I did not comment on telephone pole 20 ft further down the road. +1 on the double mailbox filled with concrete.

  30. tjbbpgobIII says:

    Find a small ironworking shop and have them build you a cage around the box using expanded metal. Expanded metal is sometimes called perforated metal, it’s commonly used to cover catwalks where snow or water must drain or on slick,oily surfaces.

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