Sunday, August 14, 2016

Not Letting Go

We had a prompt about Letting Go. I couldn't think of much worth contributing, as I didn't think I had much baggage to discard. But sometimes, one person's response gives rise to other thoughts, so this is where I am heading. I am not responding to the prompt per se, but KG'Moms post caused me to begin to think along a certain tangent.

Her theme was letting go of her need to fix things, and she mentioned among other things the compulsion to pick up other people's garbage.

Okay then, I too am sometimes guilty of trying tidying up other people's messes.

The most obvious thing that comes to mind is my propensity to pick up other people strewn litter at our community mailbox. We have a lot of those community boxes in newer subdivisions in this country with newer being defined as something like the last 20 years,

Our community box is just a few houses down from our door, and ... well ... instead of me describing it, I shall go and take a picture.



Anyway, the point that I was getting to is that there are folk who tend to discard the bulk mail that we all love so much. They will drop it or stuff it between the boxes.

Junk mail stuffed so low and deeply that I haven't extricated it yet.


I don't know why they do this. We all have recycling boxes, and after checking our mail, we all head to our homes where those boxes are kept. It's not really a big ask to take your bulk mail home and toss it in the bin in passing. Except for some mysterious reason it is a big ask for some people. Sigh.

But no! They leave it for others to pick up. I started grabbing some of this litter and also mentioning it to a few neighbours, and for the most part, we seem to more or less keep the situation under control these days.

The other idiosyncrasy that comes to mind is my compulsion to tidy up the corrals where we return our shopping carts after use. I am unclear as to why so many must leave their carts by the opening because it's not that difficult to push it either to the back of the corral or at least to whatever carts are back there.

But no! It's somehow easier just to abandon the cart helter skelter, walk merrily away, and leave it for the next person to deal with. That next person more often than not is me. Even if they have left me enough room for my cart, I will almost invariably push those that I can toward the back of the corral to make life a little easier for the next person. (I should also take a picture of this some day.)

I am not too fastidious about this. I do not spend a lot of time stacking and lining up the carts, but I just try to quickly make a little space for the next person.

I do take some solace in the fact that I am not too hung up on this activity, for back in our previous town, we had a neighbour who was losing his faculties a little, and he would really get into organizing the carts. It made him very happy to take on this voluntary chore. So, it does worry me just a tad that I may be slipping like he was. Hopefully, as long as I can analyze it like this, I am not falling into the same predicament.

And that's my takeoff on the actual prompt, and, no, these are not habits that I need or intend to break.






14 comments:

Marie Smith said...

I do the same thing with the carts as you do. I always thought it was the teacher in me, wanting to make things flow more smoothly for people. What irritates me more, is the people who don't return the carts to the proper place. I will do it for a cart in the area where I park. From a distance, I watched a man one day roll a cart downhill towards a corral. It barely missed several cars. Unbelievable! I hope it is not Alzheimers!

Tabor said...

My husband cleans up stuff on our hikes. I clean up at other places. I also like to help keep the carts in the shelters without spending a lot of time. I think you ought to get a recycle bin on wheels near the mailboxes and then once a week wheel it to the trash pick-up site. I DO NOT think this is reflective of a mental illness. It is just tidying up our world.

TexWisGirl said...

the junk mail turned litter is very sad. i will walk my cart to the 'trap' and push others into it, too.

troutbirder said...

Yes Im a cart straightener upper too. But other people garbage not so much unless it end up on my yard...

KGMom said...

AC--By George, I think you've hit upon a common tidy up theme. Cart straighteners! I can't abide the fact that people abandon carts right where they had their car parked. Unload the groceries, get in the car and drive away. I have been known to walk up to a person getting ready to get in the car, leaving said cart in the parking lot, and saying--Here, I'll take your cart back to the store so you DON'T HAVE TO DO IT. Of course what I mean is--you are so selfish you can't even take the time to return the d#mn cart.
Ugh--the people who stuff junk mail in the communal mailbox area! Do you ever SEE someone doing this? I know I wouldn't be able to keep my mouth shut.

Ruth said...

We are fortunate to still have home delivery, even though I seldom receive mail any more. Flyers are annoying but stuffing them between boxes is irresponsible. I shop at grocery stores where carts "cost" 25 cents to release. People tend to return them properly in order to get their coin back. To get a cart at Walmart here, you have to use a loonie. I never buy more than what I can fit in a hand basket there.

Vicki Lane said...

I'm another shopping cart tidier. I saw a meme on Facebook -- something like "I won't judge you by your appearance' I WILL judge you by how you return your shopping cart." Yep.

Beatrice P. Boyd said...

As you know, we now live in an apt community, and people here are just as thiughtless and careless. Some have left furniture items in the trash room, other have left their bagged garbage there without putting it down the chute. And, some will place a bag in the trash chute but nit oush it down, leaving it for the next person to do so. And, yes I too return my shopping cart and try to straighten out the rows, but Inlike KG's comment about suggesting the person who leaves it by his/her car shiuld be spoken to...I just find it easier to move it myself. Some folks may not take kindly to being reminded of their inconsiderateness.
And, good for you and your fellow neighbors for correcting the misdeeds of others in not recycling.

Shammickite said...

There's a big wooden box with a slot in it next to our array of 8 mailboxes, and people have been trained to post their discarded junk mail into the slot unread. The property manager empties the box whenever it gets full and recycles it. Those companies insist on filling our boxes with this rubbish... don't they realise we just throw it away before even looking at it? Well, I do anyway. Perhaps not everyone does.

Jennifer A. Jilks said...

This is so funny! I regularly pick up our ditches around here.
These mailboxes are so awful. What a step backwards.
Good for you for picking this stuff up I'm proud to know you!

Mage said...

Bravo for picking up the trash. With my fragile wrists, I'll just let you tidy the shopping carts. :)

Jayne said...

Same here, except with the thought, "Didn't your mother teach you better than that?" I think it boils down to respect for others. Period.

Jim Flack said...

I agree with Jayne. It's a matter of respect. Even the golden rule! I have to use a handicap parking space due to my arthritis. It really pi##es me off when some thoughtless person leaves a cart in those spaces. I feel that if you're able to get out and about, even if you have a handicap, you should be able to put the cart away where it belongs. As far as trash is concerned, I live in a neighborhood where a new convenience store has opened just a block away. I also live at the junction of two alleyways. I am constantly picking up candy wrappers, soda cans and bottles, bags, and other detritus from walkers who have visited the nearby store from my yard. Talk about things that stick in your craw. "Didn't your mother teach you better than that?" is correct. No, evidently not! The walkers are not children, they're adults! Sad, isn't it?

Jennifer A. Jilks said...

I hear you! I'm happy with my mailbox, even though the snowplough takes it out from time-to-time!