The Daily Post asks,
We all have jobs, tasks, and chores that we dislike doing. Tell us all about the least favorite job/task/chore that you get stuck doing routinely. What is it about this duty that you can’t stand?
My family knows the answer to this question without even thinking.
Dad hates trash night.
My favorite night? The night after, because it is the farthest night from the next trash night.
I’m not sure how I ended up being the
trash man sanitation engineer in our household. Perhaps it is because I don’t cook, clean or do laundry. It is a tradition that started before my children were old enough to help take out the trash, and now is so embedded in our family’s culture that even though my teenage boys could easily do this task, they don’t.
This is my task. My cross to bear.
I still hate it.
There are two trash cans in the kitchen, one in the basement, one in each of three bathrooms, and one in each of four bedrooms, and one in my office. I have to tour the entire estate every week to collect the trash BEFORE taking it out to the end of our driveway. I have teenagers. Their doors must automatically lock. I feel like the character from plague-infested Europe in Mel Brook’s History of the World, “bring out your dead!” BRING OUT YOUR TRASH. Everyone knows it is trash night. The ‘dad hates trash night’ jokes usually start the night before or in the morning. It’s like the camel walking through the office on Wednesday asking what day it is. What night is it? It’s TRASH NIGHT already! I know. I hate it. HAVE YOUR TRASH READY! Is that too much to ask?
It’s particularly onerous this time of year (winter) when the driveway could be icy, it could be snowing, it’s usually blowing, and it’s often downright freezing cold. Try to tie a trash bag with gloves on. It ain’t easy. Many times we have so much trash (we are a very trashy family, apparently) that I have to make multiple trips over the frozen tundra. Sometimes, if we have boxes to discard, they blow across the street before I get back with heavier trash to hold them down.
I loathe trash night.
It wouldn’t be so bad if we had some general rules in our house. But apparently, discarding trash is a lawless, free-for-all activity.
1. If you are throwing something out, make sure it is in the trash can. If you insist on leaving trash on the floor in the general vicinity of the can, then YOU CAN TAKE OUT THE TRASH. Is that unreasonable?
2. Don’t throw out open bottles or containers with liquid in them. I know you don’t have a sink in your room, but do not throw liquids into the can, even if there is a bag in the can (and there should ALWAYS be a bag in the can!) Our small trash cans in the bedrooms have plastic bags from Wal-Mart, Dicks, Martin’s etc. to make collecting the trash easier and less messy. Unfortunately, these bags are not always devoid of holes. If you feel the need to throw half a can of soft drink away (and you should have finished that anyway–there are thirsty kids in the Sahara somewhere that would kill for that soda!) pour it down the sink in the bathroom first. Unless YOU want to take the trash out!
3. Our main trash can in the garage has a liner in it. Respect the liner. If it has slipped off the edge of the can, don’t hurtle your uneaten food and gross slop in on top of the fallen bag. IT GOES IN THE BAG. Otherwise, perhaps you would like to take the trash out. It’s quite annoying not to be able to get the bag out of the can, and then have to wash the inside of the can because someone failed to use the liner.
4. If the weather is warm (and probably this is true for anytime, but especially if the weather is warm,) PUT THE LID ON THE CAN. I can’t count the number of summers I have had to deal with MAGGOTS because someone who doesn’t have to take the trash out left the lid off the can or slightly ajar. It has a lid. Use it. Otherwise, perhaps you’d like to play with the maggots while emptying the trash?
5. If what you are throwing out is already smelly, or will likely become rotten before trash night, then please seal it in a plastic bag. We have them in the house. Ziplock. Tie it off. I don’t care. They are there. Use them. Unless, of course, YOU really want the job of taking out the trash.
I hate trash night.