I was driving along the streets of Renton this morning when I saw something occur near the on-ramp to 405 S at Talbot Road. A gentleman who was walking on the sidewalk, very purposefully turned around to watch a piece of paper trash blow past him. He made no attempt to stop it or pick it up then simply turned around and kept walking.
Now that Waste Management is back to work, and our roads and driveways are becoming clear of overflowing garbage cans and filled-to-the-brim trash bags, it is easy to dismiss the problem and say that the trash is getting back on track. Is it only the job of Waste Management employees to pick up the garbage though? I bet if the man I observed had been watching a $1 bill blow by, he would have made some effort to pick it up.
I see this problem all to often - a conspicuous piece of obvious garbage not 6 feet from a trash receptacle, with multiple passersby pretending it isn't there. "It's not mine, so I shouldn't have to deal with it," is the mentality these days. All the while, fast food wrappers, plastic, newspaper and many other forms of human refuse and debris are piling up in ditches and parking lots all over our community.
So I guess this is my plea to you, my friends & neighbors: Please be a part of the solution, not the problem. If you pass a piece of trash, bend over and PICK IT UP. Your excercise-starved body will thank you for the extra calories you just burned. Your community will thank you for making this a more pleasant place to live. The earth will thank you for clearing out her lungs.
I thank you- because when we consciously work together on something as simple as picking up ONE piece of garbage, we start to build healthy habits we can all benefit from.