Old News Is Good News... Right?

Guest Opinion

With Patience, Locals Will See Cycle of Benefits

By Stacey _______

Commingle. It's not a word used frequently in my daily vocabulary, but as a stay-home mother of three, I have witnessed it by definition.

Sometimes I find a misguided fork in the spoon slot of the dishwasher, or perhaps a lone and once very dark sock in a recently bleached load of whites. My boys have been up in arms over the fact that from time to time their militaristic action heroes are found alongside a certain platinum blonde with a disproportionate figure, at which point I start to question my housekeeping skills and, on second thought, parenting style as well.

I have heard not one good response concerning the newly implemented recycling program. Rounding off the list of compliants is the separation debacle, the brilliant blue tubs and paying for it whether you recycle or not. The latter I won't even begin to address. I have been through all of this before, and let me tell you, commingle happens.

A few years ago in another town- in another state- a similar recycling program was started, and not unlike my children and their action figures, the townspeople were up in arms with the same objections.

On one particularly rainy morning, I sloshed down the muddied and potholed lane to find a large, wheeled, grey can with the arrowed, triangular symbol emblazoned on the front where my fire-red tubs once sat.

Oh happy day.

My trash, which is charged by the gallon, was reduced by two-thirds and ultimately put more green back into our penny-pinching single-income budget.

The way people go about their daily lives is hard to change. If you are not used to taking the 4.8 seconds to recycle instead of chucking a used item in the trash bin, you won't- especially if it means three paper bags and lugging to the curb an extra carton while shuffling a stack of broken-down cardboard underneath your arm in the snow, and uphill both ways.

Start small, piece by piece, and it will make a difference. The more people who recycle, the more cost-effective it will become for those who provide the service and, in turn, the easier it will be to recycle. See the connection?

For now, however, I will continue to make a conscious effort to be more mindful of the utensil tray, dark socks and fraternization in the toy box.

And as I take those extra seconds to recycle, I'll imagine my paper, margarine tubs and milk jugs as a well-used park bench where I can sit and watch my children play while getting to know this community a little better.

Commingle happens.

Silver Quill winners will be honored in early 2008

This is the guest opinion I wrote back in April which won the Silver Quill Award given by the newspaper.


  1. Forever Young said...

    I liked it. You have a great way of expressing yourself. I think you made some great points. Good job.