Went looking around today to see what I could do to get gmail working a bit more like yahoo (as I have suddenly discovered isn't so bad)
Found this first of all: Spamgourmet which is quite a way to generate disposable email addresses on-the-fly. Quite handy.
Have only just started looking at it really, but I think it will do the job well (and seems to be a freely available, open-sourced program which is good too (and the service is free).
If you'd like to test it for me, email me here.
I found another similar program too (I forget the name now...) which looked better in some regards, but it specifically mentioned using it for keeping your flash new gmail address safe and the web page wasn't complete (the 'help') page was unfinished for example), so it didn't really evoke trust.
As to the POP access, there seem to be a couple of programs written that act like yahooPOPs, but for now I figure that is not so important. Downloading your gmail would sort of defeat the purpose of gmails added features anyway. And this is supposed to be beta - I am supposed to be testing it after all!