From a simpler time, when the cans were metal, and garbage bags were nonexistent….

Two stories.

1. My little brother, Jeff had the chore this week of taking the trash cans to the end of the driveway for the garbage truck that day.

My dad would put the grass clippings in one of these metal cans. Jeff saw the full can, carried it to the curb, filled it with water, then hid to watch the two men struggle mightily to lift this 400 pound can of “grass clippings”. Back in the day where a trash man had mighty arms, when there were no hydraulic can hoists to dump the can into the truck, they were unable to lift the can.

I believe my mom punished him for this.

2. Once, when I was 9 or 10, it was my day to gather the trash from the house, take it out to the big cans, then take them out to the curb.

Remember, no garbage bags.

Every waste basket had to be carried out, emptied into the cans, brought back in.

You know me. I do everything fast.

After the trash was picked up, my mom discovered trash left on the floor in the bathroom beside where the can was.

To help me remember, she told me to write 100 times, “I will remember to pick up all the trash.”

My dad was a salesman for Nabisco, so he always had large forms that had all his products listed on one side for his orders. The other side was blank, and we would always use that for writing, drawing, etc., so Mom gave me a sheet to get me started.

I dutifully wrote, “I will remember to pick up all the trash” across the first line.
Then thinking highly of my clever resourcefulness, I spent about 30 minutes putting ditto marks (“) under every word, for 99 more lines.
It wasn’t that quick.

She didn’t accept my cleverness.

She handed me another sheet of paper, and I wrote, 100 lines, “I will remember to pick up all the trash.”

Fifty five years later, I still remember to pick up all the trash.

Oh, and I never duplicated my little brother’s prank, either.


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