Garbage Day Gratitude
Thank you little person who goes through my recycling bin on trash day.
I say person because I can’t tell if you’re a man or a woman…and it really doesn’t matter.
It’s that smile of yours that stops me in my tracks every time, reminding me just how good life really is.
Even though you are barely taller than the large blue bin, you manage to get to the bottom of things, underneath the highly top-secret, shredded documents that leave my husband’s office every week, without making a mess. You can even navigate styrofoam popcorn at the holidays without one escaping into the gutter.
That’s a talent.
I’m intrigued with you.
It can be one hundred degrees or fifty, doesn’t matter –– there you are, rain or shine, dressed like a beekeeper, covered from head to toe, with only your tanned face exposed.
Yet, you have eyes that dance with mischief and dare I say…joy?
And inside that smile of yours I’ve noticed, at the most, maybe five teeth.
You are unabashedly happy as you gather our neighborhood’s valuable plastic, cans and glass bottles, and unapologetic, I can tell.
You take great pride in your work as you sift and sort, making sense out of chaos. You find the treasure amid the trash. I admire you for that.
I can be in the worst mood, convinced that my life sucks ass, walk up, see your big toothless smile and it can change my day. You have changed my day — many times.
Because how bad can my life be? You’re happy and I’m not?
That’s a reality check.
That’s a game changer.
That’s a Universal kick in the pants.
There’s big money to be made here, I know that.
I’ve joked a couple of times that judging from the number of wire baskets you fill with the valuable stuff that we can’t be bothered with, you probably have a Mercedes parked a few blocks away, and are wearing couture under your beekeepers outfit, like the Saudi woman do under their burka.
Good for you.
You provide a service and you do it with a smile filled with joy.
Or you’re medicated out of your mind. I have a cynical friend that swears you’re blissed out on some really great shit. “I’ll have what he/she’s having.”
Thank you for making me happy every damn Tuesday.