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The Timeless Elegance that is the Cartoon House Mailbox

Updated on July 27, 2018

Bold and Unprecedented - A Mailbox that Redefines America

A brave new mailbox for a brave new world...
A brave new mailbox for a brave new world...

In a world overrun by the traditional and pre-modern beauty of decorative curbside mailboxes, the Cartoon House Mailbox boldly goes where no mailbox has gone before. If you painted it brown, it could pass for a stack of turds fastened to a wooden post -- that’s how bold and unprecedented this mailbox is for modern American living.

Truly, it looks out upon a world defined by superficial standards of beauty and shouts, “I’m a mailbox crafted to look like a house from some 1920’s cartoon, but for copyright reasons I can’t be too specific. I may be from the Flintstones, but I can’t legally make that claim. And if you paint me brown, I look like a piece of human excrement with a flag.”

Are you bold enough to defy your HOA and mount this mailbox outside your post-post-modern assembly-line house with its three-car garage and thirty-year variable rate mortgage? Do you have that kind of daring?

The Cartoon House Mailbox dares you.

The Evolution of the Cartoon House in Contemporary Culture

Disclaimer: this is not an actual house
Disclaimer: this is not an actual house

To fully grasp the bravery in taking what is undeniably a half-ass approach to contemporary mailbox design, we need to look at how the Cartoon House has evolved over the past century in isolation from mailboxes.

In the late 1920s, when cartoons were still in their formative years and pioneers like Walt Disney were still in the midst of defining the medium’s standards for decades to come, a lesser known animator by the name of Onda Fritz created a six-minute short titled, The House that Eats Your Soul and then Vomits Dark Matter (1929).

While Fritz’ avant-garde masterpiece did not achieve critical success, it showcased the earliest rendition of a cartoon house that would set the standard for all cartoon houses to come.

Yet, the Cartoon House mailbox looks nothing like any of them. Indeed, Fritz’ creative vision likely did not comprehend a house that might pass for a cold, gray turd.

So, one could reasonably argue that the cartoon house represents an inexplicable break in the evolutionary scheme of art itself -- a break which threatens to unravel the creative structures that have long kept the forces of Chaos at bay in our universe.

Again I say, the Cartoon House Mailbox dares you.

"Beauty is truth, truth beauty,--that is all" - John Keats
"Beauty is truth, truth beauty,--that is all" - John Keats

Conclusion - A Mailbox for the Post, Postmodern World

Did you like the pun? A mailbox for the post… because you mount mailboxes on posts. Get it?

Whatever.

I’ve spent much of my life trodding this mysterious globe with the sole purpose of engaging its limitless opportunities, sights, sounds, spectacles, and last but certainly not least of all, its plethora of novelty mailboxes. To find them, you have to know where to look. But they’re out there, waiting to be cherished, used, handled, maintained, and exploited for profit.

But in all of my travels, I’ve never seen anything quite like this mailbox. Indeed, mailboxes like the Cartoon House are few and far between, which makes them special. Think about it: a mailbox like this one can’t be linked to any specific era of American history, nor can we attach it to any known cultural trends of the modern age. I hesitate to call it an abandoned outpost of American architecture because that would at least imply it had at one time been part of something truly American, if only in its infancy.

It resists our efforts to classify or, for that matter, to comprehend.

Unless you liken it to a turd, in which case it all comes together quite nicely.

The Cartoon House Mailbox Poll

Does Cartoon House Mailbox have any place in our society?

See results

The Cartoon House Mailbox Fact Sheet

Date
Event
Person Responsible
1929
The House that Eats Your Soul and then Vomits Dark Matter is released in the US.
Onda Fritz
1946
The first hot air balloon is shown in a cartoon.
Matthew Jordan F.
1999
The Cartoon House Mailbox is manufactured in the US.
Bo Bridges, founder and visionary.

Comments

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    • Mel Carriere profile image

      Mel Carriere 

      2 years ago from San Diego California

      I love your jaunty, out of the ordinary writing style, even if you are only writing about mailboxes. As a USPS letter carrier, as your bio says you once were, I wish my customers were more into avant-garde, postmodern mailboxes. Great stuff here. Now that I discovered you invented Onda Fritz out of whole cloth, it makes me even more enthusiastic about your work. It's like my pen name Mel Carriere. Nobody gets it.

    • Mowgli Jenkins profile image

      Mowgli Jenkins 

      2 years ago

      I have never heard of Onda Fritz... oh, I get it.

    • Corry Advinson profile image

      Corry Advinson 

      2 years ago

      I wish there was a Turd Mailbox. I have spoken.

    • Mowgli Jenkins profile image

      Mowgli Jenkins 

      2 years ago

      To Peter Fitz above: Dr Geral R Fords is a hack who deserved the electric chair.

      Irvin -- killer article bro. Where can I find this mailbox? I want to smash it with a sledge hamster.

    • profile image

      Peter Fitz 

      2 years ago

      I believe the first iteration of a cartoon mailbox appeared in Dr Geral R Fords medical journal called "Trappings of the Demented" circa 1845. Please check your facts.

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