Monday, January 25, 2010

What is it with the attraction of tossing garbage out of the automobile window?

Today the Chevrolet pickup truck in front of us, must have tossed out an equivalent to a 10 gallon plastic bag of trash in the 20 kilometers of road that we were behind them.

In the front of our property we have the unfortunate chore of removing a large, I mean large bag full of trash on a monthly basis.

This bag is the kind that fits into a 55 gallon drum. The number one winner is plastic Coca Cola bottles. I pity the person who downs 1.5 liter of Coca Cola, in one sitting.

Hello Diabetes, Hello tooth decay, Hello uncontrolled sugar high.

The second runner up is Styrofoam square food containers.

The kind that you get when you buy some food to go. The box has several divisions for condiments and other stuff that once was tasty, I suppose.

Too bad they don't make the box out of some food material so that you could chew the box after you devoured the inside food.....

At least it wouldn't end up on the side of the road.

How about something to make plastic bags evaporate after the liquid is gone. These small bags with a straw stuck in them started hitting the road side ravines about two years ago..... Nasty little things.

The only thing positive about the Mexican road garbage situation is that we never find anything of value......or maybe that's a negative. I guess it depends on if we are throwing out or picking up the stuff.

I thought that it was only a get it out of the car situation, but even during my stumbling around town, I can be following people both old and young as they walk by a trash bin only to wait about 10 feet and toss it on the side walk.

Maybe it was a subliminal thing, seeing the garbage can , makes them want to shed the trash immediately......

It also seems that the old folks use the bins a lot more than kids......must be the rebellion in their pants.

Meanwhile we will go to Costco and buy a box of heavy duty trash bags and keep on cleaning.

Maybe one day, ( probably not in my lifetime) they will develop a sense of pride in their country.....

One can hope.

9 comments:

Jerry L. said...

At least they are not burning cigarette butts.

Bob Mrotek said...

Tancho,
Think positive. It may be a blessing in disguise. Just look at all the exercise that you are getting picking up after them. I'll bet that you have great muscular and skeletal flexibility :)

Felipe said...

I recall back in the 1950s when my family would take an occasional road trip. We thought absolutely nothing of tossing trash out the car window. Not all that much, but a coke bottle, a napkin, whatever. It never entered our minds that we should not do that. We were not atypical swine. The mindset was simply different back then. There was no environmental consciousness. One never gave it a moment´s thought.

Mexico is like that now 60 years later. It is changing here, but it´s a slow go and will take time. It´s a question of education.

Tancho said...

Bob, I keep going and thinking that I will find something like a Rolex or 24K gold ring, I would even settle for a gold molar or two...maybe I can figure something to do with the plastic from all the bottles.

Felipe,
Yep our family did that too, but we didn't have plastic bottles, and we didn't even think of tossing glass bottle, we had nice income from returning them for the deposits.....
It just shows a lack of community pride I think. Some towns don't have as bad a problem, so it may be somewhat regional.

Bob Mrotek said...

Tancho,

Most of those plastic bottles are made from Poly Ethylene Terephthalate (PET). It is pretty neat stuff. Did you know that it is heavier than water and won't float? Sounds crazy but it is true. Fill a PET bottle (the clear ones) with water and then place it in a bucket full of water and it will sink like a rock. All you need is an injection molding machine and you are ready to roll...fence posts, awnings, picnic tables, etc. On top of that you have a lot of it laying around free for the pickings. Plenty of piecework for bottle gatherers too. I wrote about this once. You can check it out at:
http://mexicobob.blogspot.com/2007/10/pepenadores.html

You see? Now you got me started...

- Mexican Trailrunner said...

I agree, the basura drives me nuts too. I hate that I have to clean up the the basura from in front of my house generated by Octomom down the street's kids. I have, however, recently solved the problem. They clean it up, I pay them to do so. Yeah, I see the irony, but as of now they haven't figured out that the more basura they toss, the more they get paid.

Agree with Felipe, it's just a consciousness thing. Some have it, some don't. I remember when we didn't think anything of tossing garbage out the window either.

Takes a long time to change the consciousness of people. Look at drunk driving. Way worse in this country than tossing basura. Look how long it took to turn that around in the US.

Leah Flinn said...

Veracruz is lined with trash as well, unfortunately. As soon as we sweep our sidewalk it seems it's just as littered by the end of the day.

It is a matter of education, imo...hope that will change. Sometimes I shudder to think how much more trash would line the landscape if not for the deposit system of glass-bottled refrescos.

Steve Cotton said...

Our little tourist town suffers greatly from the "It's-not-my-house" syndrome. People leave the most amazing things on the beach. But I have noticed an increase in the use of the well-placed garbage cans. We even have a group of girls (but no boys) who volunteer to clean up the beach periodiocally. It is changing.

Calypso said...

Yes well it is never too soon to complain and bring this trashy blight to the attention to anyone that will listen.

My family never littered 60 years ago to now - we were weird - still are....