Sunday, July 24, 2011

Green Irony

When we first moved to Florida, we lived in a community that did not offer curbside recycling. Three years later, when we moved into our current house, the former owners left us their old beat-up recycling bin. It was covered with dings and holes and cracks. Because I had no experience with community recycling, I just assumed that the guys on the recycling truck would replace it when it became too shabby. That was thirteen years ago.

It finally reached the point where it was so broken and brittle that I was afraid it would fall apart. So I called the recycling center to ask what I had to do to get a new one. The person on the phone took my name and address, and promised that someone would stop by during the week to drop off a new recycling bin.

“Do you want me to leave the old bin out by the street?” I asked.

“No,” she replied. “They won’t pick up the old one.”

“Why not?”

And then she said something I could scarcely believe: “Because it’s not recyclable.”

Staggering under this crushing irony, I asked, “How do I dispose of it?”

“Put it out by the curb on trash day. You have to put it into a trash bag, or the trash collectors won’t pick it up.”

So somewhere in our local landfill are thousands of old recycling bins, concealed in garbage bags like the bodies of Mafia snitches, unable to perform the one service they were designed to provide.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This definitely comes out of the "You can't make this stuff up" file.