Monday, June 4, 2012

Talkin' Trash

Time for another visit from the Ninja Curmudgeon.  Today's topic: Trash.  More accurately, litter.

We see litter on our roadsides so constantly that we often think of it as a natural and inevitable process.  But the thing is, it isn't.  Trash is an inevitable side effect of any life lived above subsistence level, so far as I can tell (okay, even that's not quite true.  There are folks who manage to live in 21st-Century America and take nothing to the landfill.  But it isn't easy). 

But here's the thing: litter is not inevitable.  Some portion of litter on our roadsides is no doubt accidental: things that got away, too much wind on trash day, the cup of coffee left on the roof of the car.  But most litter is deliberate.  It blows my mind: people throw garbage on the landscape on purpose.

I honestly have trouble imagining this.  It is literally inconceivable for me to roll down my window and toss my trash out of the car.  Yet I have to believe people do it, because I've seen it with my own eyes.  Walk down the sidewalk, drop the candy wrapper.  Drive down the road, open the window and through the McD's bag out.  Mind-boggling.

So here's my grumpy summary: we have litter lining every road and stuck in every bush because people a) don't care, b) are heedless, and/or c) are total jerks. 

Of course, this doesn't apply to any of my readers.  You are the sorts who pick up trash, and never, ever drop it on purpose.


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