TVs, weed whackers, bikes, toys, fake plants, old fish tanks, lamps, and the list is longer than the federal appropriations bill and just a wasteful. Perhaps if you didn’t just buy everything you saw to keep up with the Jones’s and purchased only what you needed you wouldn’t be swimming in a mountain of debt & crap and the landfills wouldn’t be so full of yesterday’s must haves. Maybe if you ever got off your lazy butt and got rid of what you don’t need, we could find a way to cut back on consuming everything the earth has to offer and heaven forbid have somewhere to park even your cars to boot. To top it off you get the thanks of the other motorists (yeah, other people use the streets too) who wouldn’t have to play bumper cars, trying to avoid side-swiping your vehicles that have been so thoughtfully parked at the curb so you could show the world you have so much crap it takes 600 square feet to hold the surplus.

Now, I understand, there are BBQ’s to host, sports to watch on TV, kids to transport around, hair, teeth and nails to polish. How can you possibly find the time to do anything about it? I know … why not spend some of you’re hard earned money (or use that new credit card you just got) and have someone come do it for you? You could manage that, right? They will come, take it away, dispose of it properly and leave you a nice clean garage to park your cars in. Unless you’re completely susceptible to the marketers and decide to just fill it up again … some advice, save the money and the planet … don’t.

This simple act of cleaning up after yourself will not only provide you with some satisfaction the next time you come home in the rain with an SUV filled to the gunnels with groceries, but take pride in the fact you helped put some car thieves out of work. This effort will help decrease our insurance premiums by cutting the claims to replace the Rolex that is always in the glove compartment of every car stolen. To top it off free up some police hours so they can chase the real bad guys instead of finding your new SUV that was stolen from right outside your front door when it should have been tucked away safely in the garage. In passing, you should know when you got your insurance quote and they asked if your car was garaged and you said yes to get a discount, that a tricky legal term call “material non-disclosure” comes into play if you park it outside every day. If they find out, they don’t have to pay you if it’s stolen.

So do me a favor, let’s factor in as much time in disposing of the items we buy as we did on acquiring them in the first place and get rid of them in a responsible way. That doesn’t mean wait for the day when the city lets you pile it at the curb creating a free for all trash grab … I mean responsibly.

On the top left corner of this website is a little widget. Simply type in what you want to dispose of and your zip code and we will tell you where and how to do it responsibly. We have spent years compiling this information; you can spend at least a weekend doing your part by using it. Then the next time someone asks you to donate something, simply say “I gave at the garage” and you can join me in watching your neighbors play the old game of “dodge the hail at the gas station” with the other fools who just didn’t know when enough was enough.

By Aaron Styles

A provocateur, and writer for more than 25 years, Aaron has simplified and humanized the complicated areas of politics, the environment and human interest issues. Skeptical by nature and anonymous by requirement, Aaron enjoys nothing more than getting the conversation started.