Thursday, August 24, 2006

Worse Than a Wine Bottle

Writing about the trash mishap put me in mind of a far more embarrassing situation with trash in the yard, and while I'm waiting for the exterminator to finish wiping out the crawling things, I'll take a moment to describe it.

This happened quite a few years ago, when I was quite a bit larger. Keep that in mind.

I had decided to clean out a few drawers in my dresser, the drawer, actually, containing the old drawers. I had amassed a collection of white cotton underwear that were no longer useful. You could have sailed a boat with these things. You could have covered a convertible in winter with these things. You could have protected a baseball diamond in the rain with these things. I shoved them all, along with some old tights and panty hose, into a grocery bag and tossed the whole mess into the garbage can outside.

Then, on a somewhat blustery and cold Thursday, I hauled the cans out to the street. I got the kids on the school bus and took myself to work (I worked in the office in those days). I came home later in the day just in time to meet the bus, and instead of getting to slam the empty cans, I was faced with a yard full of underclothing debris. The can must have been blown over in the wind, and of course, the grisly men wouldn't stoop to pick anything up that wasn't in the right container. All day, my old barn-sized personal items were left to float through the air, land on bushes, hang from trees like national flags, travel across the street to rest in neighbor's yards.....

I stood in the driveway, mouth open, hands on hips, thinking that if the bus were to pull up now, and if my children were to have to face their busmates with the spectacle of their mother ripping underwear off of foliage, they would have to move to another town to finish their education.

So, I ran from bush to tree to pile of cotton and nylon, scooping it up before the bus came over the hill. I snatched up the last horse blanket just as I heard the old engine grind as it approached the stop sign at the top of the hill. Whew.

1 comment:

adair said...

While I cannot begin to even fathom seeing my unmentionables (which could be used by NASA) for re-entry parachutes) splattered out on Wooster Avenue for the world to see, I also had a clothing/trash debacle.

I was in high school, in the prime of my summer, and home from a week of church camp. It had been fabulous, but like any girl I had packed (and worn) just about every good piece of summer clothing I had. Loving to pack clean clothes but hating to pack dirty ones, I pilfered two large black trash bags from the maintenance staff and stuffed everything in. When I got home, I threw the bags in the laundry room, vowing to "get to it later".

The problem? When later rolled around I realized my grandmother, thinking they were just trash, had made my brother haul the bags to the curb. The bigger problem? The bags had been picked up and were already at the landfill.