Tuesday, August 16, 2011

"The Pile of Vile" Always Remember the Tissues!

It really is amazing the things people throw out in the pile of rejection at "The Dump". Today there must have been a surge of people finding their sleep number because there was an unusual heap of mattresses that looked like they were from 1962. Either that or Keizer Permanente decided to upgrade their hospital beds.

What an odd and curious place the Dump (or “Recycling Refuse Center” for a more tasteful label as they call it) is. Being a sentimentalist and even going as far as a “cling to everything kind of person”, the dump trip comes only about once a year and usually reserved for the stuff that has made its way to the side of the house. However, after about 6 moves in 15 years we have seen the dump on several occasions.

I actually feel bad about the the discarded items at the dump.
It’s not feeling of remorse from “Oregonian recycling loss mentality” which for some of you that don’t know about that it is a feeling that EVERYTHING can be and should be recycled in Oregon. My fleeting feeling of sadness comes from the tossing of items that were once needed and now in a pile of “see ya” Items that once brought us joy or contentment or bring memories flooding back of a time that is now gone. For instance, this trip we tossed out our boys' bunk bed head boards, because in the spirit of recycling we used the bottom frames to create other beds, but didn’t find a home for the head boards, and believe me I tried to think of a good place for a year as they sat on the side of our house in “Junk Purgatory”.  As those headboards got tossed on the pile I kept thinking how many times they were moved, taken apart, back together again, stickers placed by little fingers of long ago, where two brothers bunked together and talked late at night about little boy things that made them best buddies. SEE??? See how hard that is to toss it? "Ward did you bring tissue this time?" 
Tossing of the headboard

Our headboards at home
with all the ugly mattresses.
The other hard part of the dump is that I see things other people tossed in the “pile of vile” and think I have a place for it at home! You know you have issues when you like things at the dump.. Garage sales are like department stores if you are at that level.  There’s apparently tight security going on because the guy who was overly helpful to make sure we knew how to back in our trailer and made us more confused on which way to turn our wheel until finally 10 minutes later we were in our spot, roams around making sure people aren’t taking things out of donated piles especially if it’s kind of cool. Well I found this out the hard way because I spotted a really cute antique desk in the “Metal” section that looked all lonely and sad, so I went over to rescue it... when I hear from the distance “HEY, EXCUSE ME, HEY!!” (it’s the parking guy with the orange vest!) He marches over in security guard form (something I’m sure he learned from the State Pen) and yelled over the beeping trucks backing up and the seagulls squaking “YOU MAY NOT TAKE FROM THIS PILE, ONCE SOMETHING HITS THE FLOOR IT’S THE PROPERTY OF THE RECYCLE REFUSE CENTER!!” as I’m slowly removing my hand and stepping away from the darling desk. The other “recycler” next to me was caught red handed entangled in all the metal reaching for the great Mountain bike! We both walked away, tail between our legs, defeated and scorned, back to our sections of junk that hadn’t "HIT THE FLOOR", which then I had a bright idea that if you just stand next to someone else’s junk truck and catch anything before it hits the floor then it’s fair game!

Leaving with our empty trailer and taking one last look at the desk as we drove by, the feelings of loss all disappear as we move on with life and head back to a refreshing clean side yard area, hoping that the kids won’t notice the missing dilapidated foose ball table we no longer have.  I did ask the lady at the front where they donate their prized possessions that hit the floor, and got the info to start my desk hunt.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

"FYI" Drive In Closed On a Tuesday...."Let's Get Tatoos"

Having three kids we recently figured that for us to engage in a fun activity other than the typical over used park or walk around the block, costs us an average of $50, which is really getting by with the minimal. Shockingly at a recent trip to Sunriver resort where the pool is a MUST DO in dry central Oregon, we strategically watched the weather and planned which day we’d pack our suits, towels, 45 sunblock, and our grab & go snacks which consisted of granola bars, cheese and sports drinks. We know we only had one chance to go since it would cost our family $54 dollars!! Thankfully the kids had fun, I got a great start to my tan, which I guess the bill was far less then Sunbeam Tans back home which I never do, and there was great people watching which included a wide array of lower back tattoos, mostly faded, blended and stretched .. a sign of what was cool in the late 90’s. Strangely, those same tattoos and their owners would take over the water slide and go absolutely nuts in the 15 minute adult swim only time. I highly doubt their beverage of choice was a sports drink, at least not our kind of sports drink. The adult swim is a funny view in itself when the whistle blows and the pool goes from a mayhem of families with minimal room to maneuver, to adult swim where the water is calm other than about 40 bobbing heads in almost a synchronized dance on the surface of the water. It’s almost mesmerizing from my lawnchair until I realize the clanging bell in the background is a bunch of whining hot kids, whose parents are bobbing, and they are wondering when they are going to go back in and yelling "HOW MUCH LONGER" every 10 seconds!! Pretty soon the whistle blows and the young fish are running toward the sea of tattoos while the tattoos with dry hair bobbing in the pool, who failed to watch the time and get out 2 minutes before the whistle, are scrambling to get out between the giant cannon balls and loaded swimming diapers, which really makes for the best show of the day. It really is amazing how many tattoos are represented in a swimming hole once the secret art is revealed, and even more amazing how that number triples at a waterpark.. I’m just saying.

So the other night we decide to do something on the cheaper side of the movie theater ticket and go to the drive-in. In our area there is only one drive-in that services about 30 communities, so you have to go early, that much I knew. I have fond memories of the drive-in as a young girl with my family with the smell of popcorn popping, and gathering the blankets and lawn chairs.  Passing on this adventure to my family was really exciting for me as we found a perfect movie and a perfect open summer night. Things just sometimes are too perfect though as I realized entering the town that there might not be a lot of people here because it was Tuesday and a work night! “Cool we’ll be sure to get in I’m sure”.... OH NO IT’S TUESDAY AND A WORK NIGHT!…which reminded me that the theater is only open Friday-Sunday! “Um hey kids? We have a problem… the movie is Friday”. Now you might think they would start crying or be really upset, angry, or start throwing things at me, but instead they were fairly calm with a slight showing of disappointment on their faces, which I thought was so mature of them, only to realize it is a well earned and learned “gift”. A gift they acquired from learning that often their mom is a little scattered and does things on the spur of the moment and often leads to a closed theater, a store or a missed KINDERGARTEN ROUND UP. Ok yes.. I did that, and to be quite frank he is a very well adjusted and happy child regardless.. In these times, and there have been many, I get flash backs of the 1980’s movie Vacation where Chevy Chase is taking his family to the amusement park excited that they are the first one’s there, only to be greeted by Security guard, played by John Candy, who holds up one hand in security guard formality and says “Sorry folks, Parks Closed”. Well if you have seen the movie you know that the next scene Chevy Chase is holding a gun and forces the guard to open the park and escort them on every ride.
"Sorry Folks, Parks Closed"
All I know is I don’t carry a gun, but I have sure felt like pulling a fake "gun finger" on several occasions.

That I come by honestly as well, as I have a very vivid memory as a child of my jokester Grandpa being frisked by TSA and the police at Portland International Airport. He thought it might be funny at the time to walk through security and put a “finger gun” hidden behind his coat and say to them “hey, hey look what I got” … well they didn’t think that was funny at all, but I think he was still giggling with his hands against the wall and all of his family scolding him.

The good that came out of the drive-in mishap is that we decided to swing by the instant movie box and grab Soul Surfer which had just came out that day and amazingly was available... must have been that Tuesday thing again. Thankfully I had one good idea out of the evening and decided to turn our flat screen TV around so that it faced out the window onto our covered deck area. We grabbed the blankets and popcorn out of the car and had a great night outside regardless and only $1 (minus the wasted gas to the drive-in). As I type they are watching another movie tonight out there in our “theater room”. They did however remind me that tomorrow is Friday and we are going to the drive-in.

Spears Outdoor Theater