Pace, 1994: One day my husband came home from work one day with a sticker. He walked over to the trash can and carefully labeled the front of it and stepped away. I read the sticker and said, "you've got to be kidding me."
"You can do it," he said.
"I don't think so," was my response.
"Please," he smiled and walked away.
The sticker had a big red stop sign and a simple question: 'Can it be recycled?'
I would love to tell you from that day forward I was an avid recycler, educating my children on the virtues of recycling, thinking of ways to reduce the amount of waste of which enters my home and our landfills.
Even so far as to cut my thumb on a can of cream of chicken soup as I pressed overflowing refuse down into the can with my bare hands to hide the evidence of my mutiny from him. I felt terrible as he silently cleaned and bandaged my thumb.
My husband. The recycler.
It was somewhat unsettling, watching my dear husband on trash day painstakingly pick out the cereal boxes, (back then we purchased box cereals: expensive, highly decorated, processed gluten and sugar filled carbohydrates some call food), canned soups, water bottles, and so forth out of the garbage can and separate them before my eyes. It was humiliating.
I felt childish.
However, I got the point. This was a silent fight. An endeavor in which he truly wanted my help and I was refusing because it wasn't...convenient. No, it wasn't convenient. It was an extra step in my daily routine of keeping house and teaching (home schooling) our children. My kitchen counters were messy enough as it was to empty a jar of spaghetti sauce and keep it there until I could rinse it out and place it in a separate container just for recycles. Ugh. Reluctantly, I acquiesced. Very slowly. It took a while for recycling to become a habit. It didn't take long to make the habit of separation. Now, it's second nature to take the inside paper cylinder and walk it over to the recycle can. Sure, it's not a crime not to recycle. It makes life easier to simply take the empty container and toss it into the trash without a second thought. But my one question for you, dear readers, is this: have you been to the dump lately?