Monday, April 28, 2008

Consume, Squander, Dump, Repeat.

Yesterday the Weird Aunts invited me over to inspect the Phat Lewt from their Day of Dumpster Diving. It's the end of the school year, I live in a college town, and the dorms are being purged of their tapeworm-like residents. The dormrooms must be completely emptied before the students leave for summer break. I'm not sure what I expected them to find, but it wasn't what I saw.

I don't know if I can really describe how I felt when I saw what had been left behind, intended for the landfill. Clothes with tags on them, appliances still in boxes, food that was sealed, unopened. The quantity of it was overwhelming. How could people throw this out? How could they not drop it off at one of the eleventy-billion missions, shelters, or kitchens in our city? How freaking selfish is that? I stood there staring, babbling repetitive nonsense and trying not to cry and feeling like a complete dork.

Every single bit of it found a place that it was needed almost immediately. Even the crappy college-kid food is ideal for the homeless, since it's usually portioned and doesn't require refrigeration or a kitchen to prepare.

I asked if I could join them the next time they do this. I can't make people think about what they throw out, but I can at least try to mitigate it. Cub is very excited at the prospect of being invited on the next Dumpster Diving Expedition -- I think he has visions of bungee-ing head first into a giant skip!

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