Here’s a new installment in the old story of bulky junk being dumped along our roadsides, or even in the woods.
The erstwhile owners of this worn-out sofa — fancy though it surely was when new –needed to get rid of it. That much we can safely assume. So they dumped it by the side of Bryant Way and stuck a paper sign on it: “Free.”
What they could have done instead was to call Republic Services, which used to be known as Allied Waste and before then as Albany-Lebanon Sanitation. On its website, the local disposal service answers a question about bulky junk: “Items such as appliances, mattresses and home furnishings may require special handling and/or advance notice. If your item is in working condition, you may wish to donate it to a local charity or use freecycle.com to find alternatives. Contact us for applicable charges or to schedule a pickup.”
I looked at the “freecycle” site and didn’t find it helpful. Republic’s reference to “applicable charges” — that may be the rub. From the looks of that couch, I’m guessing its owners were not among the top 1 percent we hear so much about when the talk turns to “income inequality” and such. It’s likely they needed to get rid of this of this old monster and get rid of it quick, with no time to save up whatever it costs to have the disposal company pick it up.
Once they got the thing on the pickup, they might have taken it all the way to Coffin Butte, a half-hour drive away, but again, dumping stuff at the landfill is not excactly cheap. So off to the side of the road it went.
A few weeks ago an old mattress ended up near the same spot. These things always get picked up sooner or later, usually by the road department. Seems to me our city and county trash disposal franchises ought to include a requirement to maintain a local drop site where people without the means to pay hefty fees could take their stuff. Maybe this would not solve the problem. But we ought to give it a try. (hh)