Tuesday September 7, 2021
From the messy desk of Amanda Eichstaedt…
Litter Bugs Me
Well, it sure as hell bugs me. During the pandemic (wait, we are STILL in the pandemic – sigh) I started to get really annoyed by the trash building up on the sides of the road when I would run or ride my bike. So, I started to integrate some trash pick up walks into my routine. Man, there is a lot of trash out there, and after this record breaking weekend of visitors, the picking should be mighty fine!
The Trash Army, early morning haul on Highway 1 between Olema and PRS. photo. AE
I found three nice friends who also enjoy picking up trash, and we try to get out the first Thursday of each month. I know that Loretta Farley does it regularly. And then I learned that Lina Jane Prairie and her husband Neil Whitehouse were on the plan. Don’t forget our Coastodian, he’s an avid trash picker upper. Come to think of it, Librarian and KWMR Programmer Kerry Livingston has been known to stop on her commute to and from Stinson Beach to grab stuff where it is safe to do so. And And now EVERYONE can hop on the trash bandwagon since it’s time for the annual “Litter Bugs Me” event, this year supported by the Environmental Action Committee of West Marin and some other fine sponsors.
Right now there is a skimpy pair of black undies on the side of Bear Valley Road that I spied on a morning bike ride. Who knows what you might find? I know you will find masks, Modelo cans and bottles, water bottles, and a variety of rubber gloves….and cigarette butts. There are also some really nasty things like bottles of “chew” spit or pee, and the occasional pile of human feces. Gotta love our fellow humans.
Wear sturdy shoes, gloves, and a bright yellow or orange vest and you can pick up a “picker” at Building Supply. One of my colleagues in the trash world prefers using a 5 gallon bucket to collect the trash. I like big construction garbage bags, but I just wish they weren’t scented. I mean, really?
Maybe you already do this regularly, and if that is the case, “Thank you!!” It is a satisfying way to get out and enjoy the views. I prefer early morning pickups myself. Or maybe you are just “trash curious.” Give it a try! I bet there’s some trash right near your home, so you don’t even have to venture very far!
And guess what? It’s like painting the freaking Golden Gate Bridge. We will never run out of crap to pick up on the side of the road. Whether it accidentally flies out of a car, or is purposefully dumped, or thrown out (empty beer and booze bottles). There is enough for everyone!
The reasons for picking up trash are clear. It’s a nuisance, it can get tangled in wildlife, and could wash into our waterways.
So if you see someone out picking up trash, don’t assume they are doing community service for some nefarious activity for which they were caught. Give them a wave, a quick toot on the horn and a thumbs up, and for heaven’s sake, if you see any pedestrians out on the side of the road, ease up on the accelerator, slow the “bleep” down and give a few feet of clearance.
Station Manager/Executive Directorp.s. KWMR is still seeking your contributions to be included in Charlie Morgan’s Memorial Show on Tuesday, October 12th. If you would like to be included please reach out to Amanda Eichstaedt and Jeff Manson. You can contribute in honor of Charlie Morgan HERE.