~my thoughts about life~

Thursday, April 21, 2011

"You Dang Kids! Get Out of My Yard!"

I feel like the old lady in the neighborhood who stands on the porch in her robe, slippers, and curlers and yells at all the kids who pass by. 

Lately, I've noticed a group of three middle school girls who cut down my street each day after school.  They stop at every mailbox on the street, open it, and put up the flag.  The first time I saw them do it, I was standing in my driveway, putting some trash in the garbage can.  The girls saw me and still continued opening each mailbox.  

The next day, it happened again.  So I decided to get involved.  I stood at the top of my neighbor's hill, which is lightly wooded with trees.  I was 15' higher than them which gave me a great birds eye view.  I was wearing bright pink so I definitely wasn't trying to hide.  One girl walked up to the first mailbox and reached out to open it.  Another girl spotted me at the same moment and called out to her friend, "Whoa, whoa, whoa...no!"  She turned her back to me and whispered something to her friend.  The other girl responded, "Where?" while turning and looking at me.  Caught off guard, she smiled and hollered up, "I like your skirt."  My arms were folded defiantly when I answered, "Thanks.  Are you the girls who have been messing with all the mailboxes?"  As if timed perfectly, a car pulled up behind them at that exact moment and honked.  It startled the girls who turned around to find someone they knew.  The driver asked if they wanted a ride, which they accepted.  So we never got to finish our conversation.

That was Friday so I hoped I scared them enough that they wouldn't do it again.  Boy, was I wrong.  I missed the girls Monday afternoon and they did it again.  On Tuesday, they not only raised every flag, they left the lid of each mailbox wide open.  Hubby found the mail of our 81-year-old neighbor on the ground, soaked.

So I have a couple of options.
  • Be the nice lady on the block and let it go.  We may end up losing our mail though.
  • Stand on the street every day before and after school to "babysit" the girls and make sure they don't do it again.
  • Hire a professional to install an electric shock on the mailbox to assure the girls never touch it again.
  • Follow the girls home from school and vandalize their mailboxes.
  • Call the police.
Am I being unreasonably grouchy? 

Another story, which may be related concerns my neighbor's house for sale.  It's been sitting empty for a while and the realtor shows it from time to time.  One evening, he noticed the porch light was on.  He assumed the realtor left it on by mistake.  The next day, it was off.  He assumed it burned out.  The next day, an upstairs light was on.  The next day, it was off and the porch light was back on again.  He finally investigated to find both doors of the house unlocked.  He thinks the realtor may have left the door open and someone decided to go exploring.  I have a feeling it's these same three girls.  Before the mailbox incidents and around the time of the mysterious lights at the house, I noticed the girls walking up my driveway toward the house.  About twenty minutes later, they walked back down my driveway.  So I suspect that these girls might be more trouble than I initially thought. 

Even though the electric shock mailbox would be the most fun, I think I ought to be sensible.  Any other suggestions?


k said...

I have zero suggestions, but this sounds like vigilante justice is needed.

Keep us updated!

Mimsie said...

Trespassing on private property is a criminal offence, is it not?

Linda said...

Tampering, in any way, with mail is a Federal Offense.

My suggestion: Use your camera. Watch for them again and take a photo, then present it to the police. Try to time the photo so that one of the girls actually has her hand on the mailbox. Tell the police about the lights on the empty house too.

Sounds like they're pretty brazen.

Electrifying the mailbox is what I think would be best--ya know, instant retribution, but it will only teach them not to bother with the mailboxes in your neighborhood. They would probably move on to another.

Theresa said...

I like the camera idea.

Cupcake Mama said...

I like the picture idea but maybe present it to the school if you know where they go as a middle ground?

Anonymous said...

have you not thought that you would be shocking the mail carrier also!!!!!!!!!!!!