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Better Homes and Garbage

There’s not much of interest to report around here. So how would you like to hear about my neighbours and their garbage issues again?

Remember the group of Israeli youth who moved in and were better-than-average neighbours except they couldn’t figure out the complexities of Ottawa’s garbage system?

Well, they left. And they were replaced by another group of Israeli youth who also can’t figure out Ottawa’s garbage system. How’s that for a coincidence? Even weirder, the new group took over the old group’s jobs. We saw them working at Carlingwood mall, doing the exact same jobs the old Israeli youth used to do.

“What happened to the people who used to work here and lived next door to us?” asked GC.

“They died,” one of them replied. And then he threw back his head and laughed, so we laughed too. Hmmm.

The new people seem nice. Happy. Enthusiastic about everything. One day we saw one of them out back shovelling snow with a dustpan. No kidding. It had snowed like crazy for two days and he was trying to dig out the car with a dustpan. I don’t even know why, since the car had been dead for months. The old Israeli youth left it behind when they left, because it wouldn’t start. They told us it was a rental, but it seemed odd that they would leave a dead rental car out there for so long.

So anyway, about the garbage. The old Israeli youth couldn’t master the garbage, even though we tried to explain it and got written resources from CCOC to share with them. Eventually we had to simplify it for them by suggesting they just put everything in green garbage bags and forget about the recycling and organics bins, but they still couldn’t manage it.

What their back yard will look like in two years if nothing changes.

What their back yard will look like in two years if nothing changes.

The new Israeli youth can’t do it either. Their little postage stamp back yard, which adjoins my little postage stamp back yard, was filling up with bags and bags of garbage. The final straw came when they tossed a package of raw chicken on top of it.

GC went to visit them. He told them that garbage day is every second Monday, and as luck would have it, that was tomorrow. If they put their garbage out front, a truck would come and take it all away. They thanked him enthusiastically and said they would do it.

And they did! They put out six green garbage bags!

The only problems were 1) they put it in their front yard instead of on the curb, 2) they put it out after the garbage truck had already passed, and 3) they only put out the garbage that was in their house; their back yard is still full of garbage.

But it’s a start, right?

(You know what would be really great? If the Israeli youth made friends with the occupants of the Pink House, which has the nicest, tidiest garbage on my street. You could eat off their garbage!)

14 comments to Better Homes and Garbage

  • grace

    You are interesting even on a slow news week my dear.

  • Lucy

    Hahaha! Did they manage to dig the car out with the dustpan?

    • Well, GC offered them a shovel and then they said no thanks they were done. So no. But maybe they would have eventually if they hadn’t quit.

  • rww

    Israeli spies have better things to do than deal with garbage. Meant in jest but you never know.

  • May

    Must be frustrating. I think that they are just being lazy or deliberately dense. Have you considered calling a by-law officer? All that garbage would be a health hazard.

    • I don’t think it’s a health hazard at the moment, since it’s 40 below zero out there. But when everything thaws during Winterlude, it might be.

  • Cara

    I agree with May that a by-law officer should be called because of the possible health hazard from all the garbage. A neighbour of ours insisted on having a debris pile in his back yard that became a housing development for lots of mice which resulted in misery for another neighbour having to deal with about 25 of them taking up residence in his house. We were lucky that only a few made it into our house. The bylaw officer insisted the debris pile be removed and that got rid of a lot of the mice. While checking out the debris pile the bylaw enforcer also discovered that the pile (which had been there for a long time because the guy had been dealing with cancer) was interfering with neighbourhood drainage and might lead to homes being flooded. Just to be on the safe side you might want the city to check things out to make sure you don’t have mice coming for visits.

  • I don’t think my neighbours’ garbage is at that point yet…but I suppose it’s just a matter of time if they don’t start putting it on the curb.

  • Tom Sawyer

    Do your neighbours speak and understand the same language as you? Afterall, it’s not that complicated. Garbage collection, that is.

  • What would they have done at home??? (the snide me thinks they just throw it over the wall into the occupied territories)