Etiquette Poll: Trash Day

Chateau Steelypips lost power this morning for unknown reasons, preventing me from putting up the post I planned to do with lots of cute toddler pictures. Thus, a quickie poll in honor of the crazy person a couple of blocks away who sometimes yells at me for dropping Emmy's bagged poop into her full trash cans while they're at the curb:

As noted a long time ago, this would be a great opening scene for an episode of CSI (Call me, CBS. We'll talk.), but beyond that, I'm kind of baffled at the yelling. Emmy doesn't get it, either, but then she doesn't understand why I pick her poop up in bags in the first place. "Humans are weird," she says, "Give me a treat."

More like this

Some of you may know that a publisher contacted me last year about turning a piece of short fiction I'd written from an adult perspective into a young adult novel. There are several reasons I wanted to do this - the first is that in many ways, the young adult fiction market is much more vital than…
SteelyKid's second-grade teacher sent home a couple of books about kids dealing with the loss of beloved pets-- one of which, The Tenth Good Thing About Barney is surprisingly atheistic. We read them at bedtime the other night, which was a little rough. After we finished, and moved her to her bed (…
Just before we turn the corner, a woman goes jogging past with a Golden Retriever. As we continue on our way, I can hear the Doberman three houses up barking at them as they go past. The windows muffle the sound, but I can make out a bit of it. "Get offa my lawn! Gonna bite you! My lawn!" When we…
One of SteelyKid's favorite bedtimes reads is Good Night, Gorilla, which is very short and mostly pictures. We've read it about a million times, so to mix things up (and further my goal of convincing her that I'm a blithering idiot), I'll give it different titles when I hold it up before reading it…

How thoroughly bagged are Emmy's droppings? From personal observation, the people who pick up garbage in my town aren't always careful about how they handle trash cans and recycling bins, and I have no reason to think things are any different in Niskayuna.

By Eric Lund (not verified) on 29 Oct 2010 #permalink

As long as the bags are knotted closed (as I do with my dog's poop bags), so no significant stool seepage can occur, it should be cheered. If the poop can fall out of the bag and dirty up the trashcan, I can see why someone may get angry.

Some people are very attached to what is Theirs, and hate hate hate you for doing anything at all with it, even if your activity is innocuous.

I'm not one of them. For example, it wouldn't particularly bother me if people walked across my lawn, as long as it only happened occasionally. The picture changes, of course, if the infringement is likely to have substantial impact or is against intimate portions of my property.

By Johan Larson (not verified) on 29 Oct 2010 #permalink

Is your trash pickup funded by property taxes (or other local taxes), like mine is? If it is, then you're each paying for each other's trash pickup anyway. As long as the poop is securely bagged and you remember to close the trash can after each "deposit," your neighbor is just being a jerk.

I get bitchy at people when they are too cheap to pay for their own garbage removal and try to pawn it off on us or when they stuff things that are violations of the bylaw into our garbage once again too cheap or lazy to dispose of it legally. Oh the joys of finding some git's KFC take out garbage buried in your compost bin.
Johan, in some places you can forfeit your property rights all together if you let people do things unchallenged.

Did your neighbor suspect you were discarding toxic waste or porn in her container?

Are you more likely to use her trash can because she yelled at you?

By CCPhysicist (not verified) on 29 Oct 2010 #permalink

If they pay by weight (as some do here), I can see why they'd be upset by your adding to their charges.

If the dog knows physics it can figure out how to lift a lid and poop in the toilet like everyone else. I don't want people pooping in my garbage can for the same reason.

By Mike Olson (not verified) on 29 Oct 2010 #permalink

Our waste has to be bagged in big, outer bin-bags (the black sort) before it goes in the bin. Just wrapped in a small bag is not OK. Also, some things are not acceptable for the normal bins (I don't know if dog-poo is excluded, but at my parents', guinea-pig bedding was); and the occupant is the one who gets the fine if the binmen notice.

By stripey_cat (not verified) on 29 Oct 2010 #permalink

To place some caveats om my "no big deal":

Where I live, waste pickup is flat rate unless you're putting out loose bags of garbage, (so no cost issues).

I might remind them that pet waste should go in the GREEN bin, not the black one, (and definitely not ever in the blue bin).

By Rick Pikul (not verified) on 29 Oct 2010 #permalink

I have mixed feelings. If it's paid for by taxes and it's very well sealed, it shouldn't be a big deal. On the other hand, how do they know that it's well sealed when they see you put it in? I haven't found any loose dog poop in my trash can, but I've found plenty of loose rotting garbage that my asshole neighbors have put in it. To make it worse, the waste removal guys often miss the small stuff.

In my case, it's also not paid for by taxes.

My thought is that as long as someone isn't fouling the can (loose rubbish of any kind) or mooching (by somehow increasing my costs or unfairly lowering theirs) it's just not an issue.

This is the sort of thing that, I guarantee, would drive my father absolutely insane if he saw anyone doing it, whether it fouled the can or not. Dad could actually be that crazy person. But then, Dad also thinks he owns the curb space-- that he never uses-- in front of his house, in defiance of all local law. (That's actually a pretty vile Chicago mentality that he's dragged into the suburbs, and if I thought I could get away with it, I'd rent a steamroller and spend a glorious weekend demolishing all the chairs that people abandon on the curbs to mark the territory that they don't actually own. But I digress.)

By John Novak (not verified) on 30 Oct 2010 #permalink

I have several times found that my just-emptied cans contain loose trash that must have been put in by other people. It appears that the loose stuff slipped down the side of the big bags I use, and didn't get emptied into the garbage truck. On a couple of occasions the loose stuff included dog poop, which -- even when well-bagged -- smells less than pleasant.

I still don't think she should yell at you though. Seems to me that your goal -- a dog-poop-free world -- is clear, and your honest error in pursuing the goal should be tolerated.