Student Voice


December 6, 2022




Mailman’s loud brakes countered by prank

September 19, 2013

Bulldogs and myself have a number of characteristics in common: we are lazy and avoid the sun at all costs, enjoy dirtying ourselves after a bath, and have both been accused of humping a leg or two.

Above all, I believe we despise the mailman with equal tenacity.

There is something inherently wrong with a person driving up toward your house and screeching their un-lubricated brakes at 8 a.m., and waking you from your dreams.

There is nothing more repugnant than a person waking me from my slumber. I need those mini hibernations each morning, and if I don’t get them, then I holler like a grizzly all day.
At the age of seven, I took action against the mailman.

There was a sort of mutual acknowledgement that we had declared war upon each other as we stared into one another’s eyes; mine were red and blistering with fury, and his were blue with a quiet calm tripping out on songs by Conway Twitty and Dolly Parton.

Being as that I was seven, there existed a significant disadvantage for me against the full- bodied mail-man. He was equivalently a Godzilla to my Tokyo and I needed to find his weakness.

What is a postal man’s weakness? I asked myself this every morning. For nearly the better half of a week I did not know, but after observing the postman in his natural habitat, I soon found out that it was mailbox flags.

Almost every morning I would hear his sighs as he lowered the red mailbox flags to their horizontal position. Often times he would have to stop at houses that I never saw him stop at for, just so he could lower the flag.

After he drove around the block of my house one morning, an idea flared into my head. I would flip every flag to an upright position. That way, he would have to stop at every house in one day.

I went about my task with an eager anticipation. For too long had I had been under the harassment of the squeaky brakes.

After the mailman exited the small residential cul-de-sac of Hallstrom Drive, I propelled myself down the slanted driveway of my mother’s house and began flipping up every sign within sight.

After completing my assault on one block of houses, I decided to do another block or two. One block turned into a total of 10. That was approximately 240 residential houses with upright mailboxes.

As I concluded my revenge, I looked at my hands and noticed that they were in a pitiful state from pushing my wheelchair throughout the neighborhood pine forest.

As can be imagined, when I returned home at 5 p.m., sleep took over. For nearly a whole day I slept, and I didn’t wake until 9 a.m., the following day. As usual, the mailman had awoken me.

I looked out my bedroom window and I could see that mailman’s eyes were a bit frazzled and red. In turn, mine felt perfectly fine.

Somewhere, deep inside of myself, I could not help but feel a little vindicated, superior, and victorious.

As I went to bed that same night, I reflected that the postman had learned his lesson and never again would I be awoken in the early hours of the morning to the sound of screeching brakes.

As usual, I was wrong and was awoken by the sound of his burly car the very next morning.
Here is to having a fresh start to this semester, and may you, the readers, get as much sleep as you need without a set of brakes pounding in your ears.

Tyler Smith is a student at UW-River Falls.