Trash Talk

December 2001

You have your pet peeves and we have ours. One of ours is the local recycling program.

In the dark days before people realized that Mother Nature was about to give up the ghost, we had one residential trash pick-up once a week. But, thanks to recycling, we now have two weekly pick-ups, and three pick-ups every other week. Doing our part for the environment, we sort our bottles and cans into one container, our paper items into another, our regular trash into another, and our yard clippings into yet another (the yard clippings are picked up every other week). The regular trash goes where it always has -- on the side of the house -- and everything else goes on the curb.

In the dark old days, one and only one truck came, at about 7 A.M. Now we get two different trucks coming every week, at about 6:30 and 7:30, and three trucks coming every other week, at about 6:30, then 7, then 7:30.

Those trucks are huge and highly mechanized, and make lots of racket. Let's say you're retired and don't get out of bed until 8 A.M. In the old days you'd be awakened at 7, but that was it, and you would doze off until the alarm clock sounded at 8. Now, however, you're awakened at 6:30. By the time you finally doze off it's 7 and here comes another Sherman tank. "Oh, rats!" Try dozing off again and it's 7:30 and another truck is rumbling down the street. You eventually realize that this is torture -- "noise pollution" in spades -- and that you might as well just get up at 6:30 and make the best of it.

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New Oxford Notes: December 2001

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