Facing a problem we created

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I have friends and family scattered over most of North America, and I hear from them about troubles in their areas. One brother in Illinois deals with occasional flooding and tornadoes. Another in North Carolina sees side effects of hurricanes and flooding, including overflow from giant pig farms’ effluent pits. A sister-in-law’s husband in Mexico has COVID. 

I have friends and family scattered over most of North America, and I hear from them about troubles in their areas. One brother in Illinois deals with occasional flooding and tornadoes. Another in North Carolina sees side effects of hurricanes and flooding, including overflow from giant pig farms’ effluent pits. A sister-in-law’s husband in Mexico has COVID. 
These are tragedies we are relatively safe from in the Pontiac. We’ve had flooding,
and that has exacerbated one problem we have here, as much as anywhere else: waste – leftover superfluity, items too good to throw away that someone might make use of someday. At our country home, we had such things stored in a tarp garage. But it collapsed after a snowstorm when I wasn’t there to shovel it. All those things we stored for future projects lay to waste; rain-soaked and reduced to garbage. Over the weekend, we hauled away much of it, as Thorne was having a large-item junk day at the transfer station. Apparently, we weren’t alone in our zealous load-out. By Sunday, all the bins were overflowing. Citizens who sorted out recyclables were shocked to see everything thrown into the overfull general garbage bin.
This is the curse of our age; we have too much stuff and not enough space to store
it! What can we do? There’s talk of a local incinerator operation, and I reluctantly admit it looks like the least-worst route out of our present quagmire. This option isn’t really an ecological boon – it’s just disaster relief, because waste piling up is going to choke us before an earthquake or a hurricane or, hopefully, before COVID finds us hiding out here in the land of few disasters, the Pontiac.

Robert Wills
THORNE/ SHAWVILLE