Thursday, August 09, 2007

The Crazy Thing About Garbage

Imagine the scene at the aforementioned fireworks festival. People everywhere. Drinking, eating foods on sticks, wandering to and fro with bags of picnic provisions. Trash cans? Nowhere. Not a single trashcan is to be seen anywhere. There are never (ever) public trash cans anywhere, in fact. If you buy something, you better eat it where you bought it, because if you don't, there is a real possibility that you will be carrying the resulting trash for the rest of the day.

And the insanity doesn't end there. I am required to sort all of the trash that I produce at home. Tuesday and Friday every week, the masters of trash will accept foodstuffs, yard waste, and everything that is burnable but not recyclable. The 2nd and 4th Monday of every month I am blessed with the ability to throw away metal things like pots and pans, electronics, pottery, aluminum cans. The 1st and 3rd Monday of every month I can... shoot myself. An amazing amount of time and effort is required with everything. Its to the point that when I go shopping for food, I occasionally make purchasing decisions based on how easily I will be able to dispose of the packaging.

Here is my very detailed poster explaining in excruciating detail how to handle the honorable trash. For example, when handling plastic bottles I should peel off the plastic label, then take off the cap. Wash it out carefully, then let it dry. One picture shows how I should then separate the bottles by color.

Phew, I just had to get that off my chest. This place is a madhouse! Hehe

Just a nice little temple up in the mountains overlooking Ashikaga. A nice escape from the daily pressures of waste sorting.


  1. That would be rough, but I guess it gets you to think about what you're consuming which seems like a good thing.

  2. Sure, but there's gotta be a way that's not so painful. Can't robots sort this crap?