The Battle of the Bags

(Another “Garbage Day Adventure”, by Me. I’m thinking of writing a book.)

Bah. I TOTALLY missed garbage pickup today. Those bastards never come at a consistent time. Or, as it happens, in a consistent fashion.

Now, our city has this completely brilliant — and, not surprisingly, completely ineffective and therefore completely useless — garbage pickup scheme, by which we divide our garbage out into 3 colour coded-bags, and then they pick it up in separate trucks and reclaim as much of it as possible in a special facility built for just such a purpose. It’s theoretically very environmentally friendly, cost-effective, and is supposed to be a model for the waste disposal of the future. Except, it’s totally NOT working.

Normally, one truck comes early to pick up your “clear” garbage — this is stuff that’s not recyclable nor compostable, and it goes in a “clear” garbage bag (hence the name “clear” garbage.) Then, another truck comes by later to get your “green” garbage — food waste, and other (mostly) biodegradable items — and your “blue” garbage (recyclables), which it throws into compartments for each. And then it all gets carted off to a waste management facility where it gets separated out and as much as can be is recycled and reused.

The reality? A truck comes by and gets your clear garbage, which goes doG knows where. It comes by sometime before 9, so if you’re going to get your clear garbage out, you better be up with the sun. And since I rarely am, we rarely get clear garbage out. But I’m okay with that.

Then, sometime after that (usually HOURS after that) a truck comes by to get our blue and green garbage. They tear open your blue bags and take out any bottles that they can return for deposit (one of the perks of being a garbage man, I guess) and then they chuck both the blue AND the green into the same damn truck in the same damn compartment, thus negating any time and energy we spent sorting the stupid stuff in the first place. Then they cart IT off to doG knows where, but they sure as hell aren’t reclaiming much of it like they said they were when we started this stupid system.


This morning, I got up. I had a leisurely breakfast and got BDH’s lunch ready. I fed the cats. I waited for BDH to leave so I could put the garbage at the end of the driveway, thereby avoiding having to park it halfway up some damned snowbank. I knew I had plenty of time because the clear truck would come by first (and, as you know, I rarely can be arsed to get the clear garbage out) and then, sometime around noon, the rest of the pickup would happen.

BDH left, and I began to get the garbage together to put out. It was around 9 when I heard the truck come by. I glanced outside.

And noticed that all the clear bags were still out.

Those bastards were picking up the OTHER garbage. Blue and green. FIRST. And EARLY. And I missed it.

I watched the truck sail blithely past. I waved my fist in futile anger at the garbage gods.


So, now, we have a can full of smelly food waste and cat litter sitting in our garage for another week. Those BASTARDS!

Thank doG it’s so cold. With any luck, all that stuff is frozen and will be just fine until next week.

But I secretly hope it thaws about 2 days before pickup day. So when they come by next week and take the lid off that can… it’ll be a snootful of STINK, man.