garbage collection

Today I was late to work because I was shoveling garbage out of the street. That’s a new one for me. Never in my life would I have guessed I would be late to work for that reason.

As I was walking across the house to the shower I noticed through the window somebody walk up to my door and ring the doorbell.  He had several pieces of mail, so at first I thought that our mail had become mixed up. He asked, “IS THIS YOUR MAIL?” He sounded annoyed. I replied that it was one of my roommates.

It wasn’t a mail mix up. The man at the door worked for the city of Davis’s sanitation department. The mail was found in a dumpster at the end of the street which is used by the city to hold yard waste for composting. My house’s garbage bin was full, so apparently somebody from the house had dumped a bunch of garbage in the dumpster. If I didn’t clean up the trash the sanitation department would call the police and I’d be subject to a thousand dollar fine for littering.

At this point I was really pissed off at my house, but I had no clue who had done it, so as the landlord I had no choice but to clean up the trash. Luckily I had the truck with a shovel already in it, so I rolled down the street and said sorry to the sanitation guy as he watched and made sure I shoveled all the trash into the back of my pickup truck.

He was actually a pretty nice guy. He suggested that I tell my landlord to get a second trash bin. I replied that I was actually the landlord and told him how much I hated being a landlord. He laughed and said it’s only 6 or 7 bucks a month for the second trash bin. And in truth he could have made me pull all the trash out of the dumpster, which would’ve meant I’d be wading through half composted yard waste in my pajamas. But by the time he had knocked on my door, he had already pulled all the trash and left it on the street, so I could understand why he was visibly annoyed at first.

For a while now I’d been thinking of living alone. I’ve always wanted to have my own bachelor pad, and it was my goal to have it by the time I was 30. But it never really made sense financially, so I’ve continued to live in the crappiest room in my house. The additional garbage payment is not much, but to me it stands as the proverbial straw that broke the camel’s back. It comes on top of all the other utility bills that are three or four times more than they would be if I lived alone. So now I’m almost certain that by the end of 2011 I’ll be living alone, perfectly on schedule to start my 30s in my own bachelor pad.

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