Friday, May 26, 2006


i didn't misspell gigi. i mean Garbage In, Garbage Out. a computer acronym, but often useful in wider circumstances: congress? tv? blogs?

all packed and ready to go. the garbage can has stuff we can't compost or recycle, and animal product waste because the raccoons can smell it in the compost and will dig it up. for us that means eggshells and chicken trimmings. also in the can is cat shit. i am bothered about taking catshit in plastic bags to the landfill, but haven't worked out a home disposal system yet. at one of the last projects i did in santa cruz before moving to the great northwest, i found plastic bags in the ground when i was digging holes for concrete footings for a small outbuilding. the bags were at the bottom, i poured the 'crete. later, i asked the owner if he knew anything about what the bags might be. he got a rather sheepish look and allowed as how he had buried bags of cat shit and forgotten about it. he apologized profusely. as i had only touched the bags with my shovel and had not noticed a smell, and the whole thing was under concrete, i was ok.

first stop: recycling. where the elite meet to sort garbage. a bin for plastic water bottles and such (we donate our fizzy water bottles. a strange habit, fizzy water) a place for brown and green glass (wine bottles, one a day adds up), another for clear (jam jars). a place for "mixed household paper," for us that means mostly junk mail. there is a bin for cardboard, not a big thing from us. a bin for aluminum cans (cat food, one every other day) and one for tinned cans (small cans of coconut milk, used in curry dishes. we might use 3 per month). there is also a bin for newsprint. we have no newsprint. we read from the internets on the glowing screen

the gate. drive onto the scale, get a credit card sorta thing with my vehicle weight encoded on a mag strip. go dump the stuff. another scale on the exit side weighs me, and my truck, compares the weight to what's on the card, and i am charged for the difference at $4.95/ton. i usually pay the minimum of $4.95 once a month. a good deal. it should cost more.

the ne plus ultra of dumping stations! paved approach, concrete floor. and covered! dump in the rain and stay dry. when it fills up the operator pushes it all to the end with a skip loader, the bucket of which has a derelict mattress attached to its lip so as to act as a mop. from there it is loaded to trucks and dumped in a landfill. yard waste goes to another area and is composted.

for many years, one of my markers of a civilized society was affordable, drinkable red wine. i have added to my list a well run, fully recycling garbage depot staffed by nice people, and at least these two indicators are satisfied here locally.

update::::::: i saw this comment over at firedoglake. in response to this post. thank you rwcole, for putting it so well.

So far the american people have gotten a free ride for the havoc that their disinterest, lack of attention, wishful thinking, greed, and buffoonery have cost themselves and the world. That should stop.

You caused this mess you dumb fucks. You listened to the brain damaged son of a guy you booted out of office as he blew smoke up your asses- told you you were God’s chosen people- that you didn’t HAVE to pay any taxes- and that laws or no laws- you could invade any fuckin part of the earth you wanted with impunity. You were there when the craven idiot amended the laws of physics and told you that you could pollute at will and it wouldn’t cause any problems. You stood there silently when the criminal told you that energy conservation could not be a part of public policy and that you had a God given right to burn up as much gasoline as you liked and fart it back out your tailpipes.

You have behaved irresponsibly- you even elected the insane motherfucker to a second term. Now when he breaks the law by spying on you- endangering the constitution you elected him to defend- you nod along silently sayin “yeah- you need to protect us from terrorism” and go back to “American Idol”.

You deserve everything you are getting you ignorant putzes!

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