Ten True Confessions From a Year of No Garbage

November 17, 2020 § 7 Comments

  1. I’ve flushed used staples down the toilet.
  2. I’ve asked visiting friends to take their garbage back home with them. I am nothing if not a gracious hostess.
  3. I’ve donated ketchup packages to the food cupboard. KETCHUP IS FOOD, PEOPLE.
  4. At an art reception I’ve let a friend go off looking for a real wine glass just for me and then taken the plastic cup anyway because, oh look! It is “recyclable.” Also because: oh look! It’s wine!
  5. I’ve returned two pants hangers to the dry cleaner that had missing or broken clips. They may or may not have been repairable. I am counting on the existence of a clothes-hanger fairy.
  6. I’ve let my husband burn a dish sponge in the outdoor fire that, although significantly worn, probably/definitely still had some plastic scrubbie bits attached to it. In my defense, it was either that, or name it Fred and knit him a tiny Christmas sweater.
  7. At any given moment I have an inadvertent damp paper towel collection in my purse. This is the result of occasional times when I’ve been on automatic pilot in a public restroom. Nothing says “Yessir, I’ve got my life together!” like dropping wet accordion towels on the floor while fishing out your wallet at the bagel shop.
  8. I’ve given up on saying “No receipt, please.” First of all, it makes everyone hate you. Second of all, and this is weird, you do occasionally need receipts to prove you paid for the things you are removing from the store. Apparently.
  9. So that piece of tin foil with burned-on fish-skin? That I couldn’t manage to scrub entirely off, and then I tried to recycle it anyway?— Because how bad could that little teeny-tiny micron of fish really smell? It turns out the answer to that question is REALLY. REALLY. BAD.
  10. No one wants my stuff on Freecycle. I can’t imagine why not. What’s not appealing about someone else’s half-used hair care products? And, honestly, they hardly smell like fish at all.

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§ 7 Responses to Ten True Confessions From a Year of No Garbage

  • Rachel Quinn says:

    At least you have a sense of humor about it all!

  • Patricia Ogden says:

    I want to know when you got stopped leave a store with something for which you did not have a receipt. Sounds like a fun experience! Don’t worry like Mary Poppins you are a practically perfect person-with a sense of humor.

  • judy says:

    Curious question. Why would you ‘waste’ water to flush used staples down the toilet? They are metal and will rust into oblivion left in the trash. If you are on a septic system — how good could that be for the system? If you are on city type sewerage — they really only want to see ‘biological waste; and TP.

    • Hi Judy- These are not my finest moments. Rather, this is the desperation that can set in when obvious solutions are elusive… several hundred times a day or so. Fortunately we live on a septic system, so if anyone gets hurt by my four or five bent staples, it’s only us. As for the water, I only flush when there is a “reason to” (ahem)- and that’s what I did here as well… but again, clearly NOT my best work.

      • judy says:

        You are right — a few staples won’t harm a thing. I somewhat got the impression that it was ‘ a thing’ to do with them.

        I used to over hype on recycling and using up anything that could be used up. For example: when I order online and the item(s) arrive in one of those floppy plastic bags, I turn them inside out and put trash in them. Nothing wasted. I reasoned this: why would I cut this up and put it in a new trash bag when this bag holds small trash? I still do that today. I fold over the open top and use 2 staples to close it up. And out it goes with a purpose.

        However, I have had to let go of ‘everything must have an afterlife’. At my age downsizing is at the top of the ‘get it done’ list and my energy needs to focus on letting go of many things and many habits (hyper recycling being one of them). I still do a pretty good job, but after much research on recycling, I realize that some of the effort is for naught as much does not really end up being repurposed and ends up in the landfill anyway. I have a whole library of bookmarks on this subject as well as a few books on the pitfalls of garbage.

        i think that is how I ended up with your newsletter as it was found under searches for the subject.

        Thanks for taking care of my curiosity. Be well.

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