Thursday, April 12, 2007

Battle of the cardboard wills

Yes! I won! Take that, evil recycled-goods picker uppers!

Ever since the baby shower, it has been a battle of the wills between myself and the city's curbside recycling contractor. And this week, they blinked, picking up all the cardboard piled in front of the house with the exception of a single, oversized Graco stroller box, which I will except as one small, final act of defiance in an other wise total victory. And only yesterday morning, as I was lugging the boxes of cardboard out to the curb for the third recycling pickup in a row (recycling is picked up every two weeks), I was convinced that it was all going to end badly. The only conclusion to the contest I could imagine was my running down the street, red-faced, in my bathrobe, pajamas and slippers, dragging smushed up boxfuls of Fisher Price Rainforest Collection bouncy seats, tummy gyms, and swingy things behind me, and tossing the smaller boxes that held rattle, winkles and Glo-worms at the back of the recycling truck.

Me screaming - "For God's sake, have a heart - we're having a baby!" Braveheart-style at the truck while the other workers attempted to slow me down by tossing empty five-gallon Poland Springs jugs at my head.

Luckily, that scene was avoided, although I'm sure it would have been a tremendous hit with Mrs. Nosy Neighbor down the street.

I suppose I should provide a little history and context for my imaginary battle, since, according to Mrs. Endangered Coffee, I brought this upon myself, Don Quixote style, tilting at cardboard windmills. I was told that the city sent us a notice in the mail several months ago explaining the new recycling procedures - the main point being that cardboard would no longer be picked up unless it was neatly broken down and tied together into some sort of two-foot by two-foot square. Around the same time as the receipt of the recycling notice, we had our baby shower. which means we got many, many lovely things, almost all of which came in cardboard boxes.

Recycling week one - I pretended that I had either not heard or completely forgotten about the recycling notice. Huge mounds of boxes stuffed in other boxes - all obviously larger than two-feet by two-feet - dragged to the curb. I cross my fingers and head to work. Come home on my lunch break - trash gone, little blue recycling boxes emptied, huge mound of boxes spilling everywhere on the sidewalk. I kick boxes, shake my fists at the long-gone recycling truck, and drag the boxes to the back of the house.

Recycling week two - I take a slightly neater approach this week, although still refusing to break boxes down to a two-foot by two-foot neatly tied square (what the hell, don't they just crush all of the boxes anyway), I try to package them a little bit neater. Also, there is a very slight chance that I may have left some plastic and other noncardboard type trash peaking out of the top of the boxes during recycling week number one. Leave slightly neater mounds of cardboard boxes on the curb, cross fingers, and head to work. Come home for lunch, and slightly neater than first week pile of boxes are left blocking the sidewalk. I actually take things a little more in stride this week, with no kicking and only moderate cursing.

Recycling week three - Almost give up before I start, and consider backup plan to take cardboard to offstreet site for (legal) disposal. Instead, I decide that I will keep lugging those damn bouncy, swingy, strolly thing boxes out to the curb every two weeks, until BB EC graduates from high school if need be, until they are taken away. I am not normally that competitive, but given a petty and juvenile challenge, I will prove up to the task. So, once again, try to make boxes look a little neater, drag, cross fingers, work, etc., etc. Come home from work, and all the boxes are gone with the exception of the aforementioned stroller box, which, seeing as I have declared total victory, I happily breakdown into a two-foot by two-foot square and put in a recycling bin.

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Blogger Suldog said...

Yay! Score one for pigheadedness! salute you, my stubborn brother!

(*raises fist to chest, pounds self in a manly manner, and utters grunt*)

12:58 PM  
Blogger Radioactive Jam said...

Nice. I especially like the imagery of the five-gallon jugs thrown to slow you down.

And if your R-GPUs are anything like the ones "working" in Florida, they would totally do that.

1:33 PM  

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