Difference Between Garbage And Trash
   
   
Did you know there was a difference between trash and garbage? 

I'm nearly 40 years old, and I didn't know that. I always figured trash and garbage were the same thing, a bunch of stuff you wanted to throw away. 

You live, you learn. 

The other morning, I walked outside my house and I noticed the can in which I dump my refuse (a highbrow word for a bunch of stuff you want to throw away), was still full from the previous day. 

There was a little note stuck to the can. It said, in essence, that my refuse hadn't been picked up because - and I quote - "trash and garbage had been mixed." What's the difference 

I hate making mistakes like that. Once I didn't close the cover on a book of matches before striking. It was weeks before I got over the guilt. 

I called Georgia Waste Systems, where I have my trash/garbage account, to apologize. They were very nice and said a lot of people make the same mistake I did and they were not planning a lawsuit. 

As long as I had somebody on the phone who could explain, I asked, "What is the difference between trash and garbage?" 

"Garbage," said a spokesindividual, "are things that come from the bathroom or kitchen." A quick education in trash 

"You mean like bread you leave out for a couple of months and green things start growing on it?" I asked. 

"Precisely," she said. 

"Trash," she continued, "is basically anything else. We do not pick up leaves, for instance, or old furniture, or boxes of materials that were collected when somebody cleaned out their attic." 

The lady said it was up to the individual garbage collectors to decide if there is, in fact, trash and garbage mixed on their appointed rounds. 

Somehow, I can't visualize two guys on a garbage truck really spending that much time trying to figure out which is which. 

"What is it you have there, Leonard? Is it trash or garbage?" one guy says to the other. 

"I can't be absolutely certain, Elvin, but it has green things growing on it." Isn't life complex enough? 

I will, of course, comply with the waste company's dictum against mixing my trash and my garbage, but don't we have enough complexities in our lives as it is? 

Don't we have to deal with international terrorism and the women's movement? Don't we have to battle traffic, computer involvement in our lives, and airplanes that never take off on time? 

Isn't it enough of a burden that we have to decide what to do about Central America, which long-distance telephone company we want to serve us and which cereal has the most fiber? 

Oh, for a simpler time, when the good guys always won, a girl could still cook and still would, and trash and garbage were the same, both delicacies as far as a goat was concerned. 

It is a wonder that more of us don't tie a Glad Bag around our heads and tell modern living to go stick its head in the nearest dumpster.

 
 

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