Mark Urich

The Human Nature of Trash and the Trash of Human Nature

Trash day is always my favorite day of the
week, simply because I get to do work that I consider myself highly qualified
for, as opposed to essay writing. It is a career I aspire longingly towards,
one I know in my heart will satisfy my human urges for cleansing, removal of
filth and cleaning up other people’s messes. Sure, the financial rewards will
be minimal, but the human reward is immeasurable. It’s a smelly job, but
someone has to do it. It is for the greater good, after all.

But back on track, I lost myself in my insatiable desire for waste, disease,
and decay. Even more important than the bag itself is what you tie it with. A
wrong fastening can bring even the proudest and mightiest of trash bags to
their knees. Most people get the old fashioned little ties that go on the end
of bread. If you can’t hold it upside down and do the complex ritualistic dance
maneuvers (yes, I have one, but I won’t bother explaining it) then it isn’t
good enough for grade A litter.

That is why I simply adore littering. It isn’t just a hobby to me, it is a
sport. How many pieces of my life can I share with other people? How many
people will angrily see it on the road, and then realize I imparted to them a
small part of my own experience – my own existence? How will my grandchildren
feel some day when they realize there is no atmosphere left because of
so-called ‘polluters’ like myself? Landfill, trash can, recycling bin or side
of the road are all equivalent, fitting places for extraneous waste in my mind.
They all end up in the same place: decaying under the pavement. Just like us,
perhaps, evidence of our fated link to our own trash.
This particular garbage day, I was up early.
It is true indeed the trash man, a personal hero, by the way, doesn’t arrive
until 6 pm. However, I feel it is my civic duty to report my trash out early.
To set an example for the rest of the neighborhood – no, the world – of how you
should live your life: like a piece of trash. By merely blowing in the wind,
you will see the entire world. Just like black, massive oil spills in the
oceans or lakes, a foul odor in the winds, or a noise pollution so loud half
the world hears it. Trash is what connects humanity, since we’re all so
disgusting, rotten and dying every second we live.
As I was saying, I was up early. I strolled graciously to the door, with my
trash can expertly placed in both hands. I carried it like a caring mother
would transport a baby. I got the door, and I realized that today I was in for
a particularly memorable trash day.

“Let them feel it, Jeff.” the voice whispered benignly to me. I knew at that
moment that something wanted me to share this experience with others. I had to
infect them, willingly or not, with the joy that I felt from this trash. The
voice instructed me on precisely what to do, and a seemingly sinister, small
smirk spread across my face.


All rights belong to its author. It was published on by demand of Mark Urich.
Published on on 08/17/2009.


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