I just put a new motor in my 85 Toyota pickup. I love the Shark, it looks tough and it has both a straight axle and fuel injection. Anyway, the first thing I wanted to do with it, was go to the dump.
On my property there is a spot we call the resource forest, it basically holds everything that doesn’t really get used anymore but could maybe come in handy someday. I know all of you at least have a drawer full of that kind of stuff. Well a big part of the resource forest is plastic from ex growers on the property. Huge swaths of panda plastic, bins and bins of grow bags, and of course PVC. Earlier this year I rented a U-haul, filled it with this plastic and took it to the dump. (ok there were a couple of water heaters, and a washing machine in there too) I didn’t even make a dent. I knew I wasn’t going to make a difference with the Shark either, I just wanted a mission. After packing the Shark as full as it could go with panda plastic and strapping it all down, I made a pit stop at the local store.
I walked inside and heard an elderly gentleman asking one of the clerks if they knew who owned my truck. I chimed in thinking he wanted to tell me how amazing my truck is. He asked me to step outside, he wished to speak to me in private. I obliged and he begins to tell me about all the trash he has been seeing on the road into big town. He says he knows it probably isn’t me but that I should watch my load very carefully. This gentleman owns a big purplish dodge van that he uses for transporting his stone sculptures. He says he has been tempted to pick up the bags and open them to look for a name. I reassure him that I will be watchful and I go on my merry way.
Sure enough I pass by these bags of trash….then I stop in the middle of the tiny windy road and run back for the bags. Thankfully they are light and dry, ugh someone else’s trash juice on me would have been upsetting. I stomp everything into the back of the truck and retie my load. I spend the rest of the 40 minute trip wondering why, if he cared so much, didn’t he pick them up. I don’t believe in landfills, I think mother earth would be better able to deal with our trash if we spread it everywhere evenly. That would look terrible I know, but we should realize this is a question of aesthetics, not saving the planet. (Those incinerators in Europe, why can’t we get some of those?) The gentleman, why did he leave the trash on the side of the road? Once the bags broke open the mess would be far worse. Was he giving the culprits the chance to do the right thing? Did he want something to complain about, to down talk what he saw as careless people taking over our tiny town? Wouldn’t it be better if we all tried to fix something the moment it broke, rather than walking away because it is someone elses responsibility?