It's Trash Forgiveness Week in our little corner of paradise. So we're all putting piles of rubbish out at the curb. Alas, this year, we have no good trash to offer. It truly is rubble out there. A busted computer monitor, some smashed up 2x4s, broken toys and other oddments.
I could wax poetic about the 'freecycle' style donations we've had in the past – the rusted out patio table that only needed a good dose of paint to look, uh, less rusty, the plastic chairs that had reached a stage of deterioration where the white paint came off on anybody who sat in them. All these things were taken. Along with the stroller missing a wheel.
There was this one really cool moment when we had put out this HUGE plastic kitchen that our kids had never cared a fig about (and which took an enormous footprint in the playroom). A minivan pulled around the court, surveying the assortment of stuff we all had put out. They paused next to our pile. A man started to open the door, noticed we were standing in the garage, and almost got back in.
There was a wail from the backseat. Three small voices piping out, "Please? Papa? Please?!"
He stepped out and gestured at the kitchen. "Is it OK if I…?"
We enthusiastically said it was. In fact…hang on a second…
I ran upstairs and grabbed a big old plastic bag from the kids' closet. It was stuffed with all the plastic plates, food, utensils and pots and pans and whatnot that we had acquired over the years. Our kids never played with them; they'd been up on the shelf in the closet for months.
I came pounding up to the minivan and handed over the goods. There was much squealing and thank yous and so forth and so on. Those…were some happy kids. And we were happy, too. That kitchen set was one of those things that felt too nice to throw away, but none of the Goodwill-like people wanted it.
But this year, we've got nothing. Car after car, truck after truck, has circled hopefully through the court while I sat here typing, but nobody has so much as…
What the heck?
That's a…broken…PVC pipe…
OK. Apparently, the broken hunk of rather large PVC pipe was a Hot Item to the lady in the late model white SUV of undetermined lineage.
Well, you just never do know, do you…
John Kenneth Galbraith
21 hours ago