Don’t give up too easily

Originally posted to on February 27, 2014

Some days it pays to get up. And to get going. And some days it pays to keep going even after you screw up.

This morning was one of those. My day was perfectly planned: Work out, garbage out, breakfast, etc. By step two I was screwed. 

Normally trash would have gone out yesterday, but this week was special. Monday was Presidents’ Day . . . a government holiday . . .  trash pick-up would be delayed a day for the rest of the week. It was to go out today instead. 

NOT! Here in Northwest Arkansas not everyone closes up shop just because some lawmakers vote themselves what they are convinced is a well-earned day of rest. Monday was NOT a trash holiday. The truck was at the curb on Thursday as usual. 

But our cans were not.

Today is Friday. I was feeling so smug when I carried everything out to the curb at the crack of dawn this morning. It did seem odd that none of our neighbors were as clever as I. But they weren’t. Not one.

More than once I have been sure that I was right and the rest of the world wrong. I can’t recall that it was ever true. This was no exception. Back to the computer. Monday was indeed a federal and city holiday. So there! Wait . . . what’s this? City hall was closed but the workers serving us were on the job as usual. The truck had come and gone. Yesterday.

Now what? Two very full cans of trash, recyclables and dirty diapers sit at the curb awaiting a truck that won’t be here for another week. And that week will produce enough garbage to make our yard look like Manhattan when city workers are on strike.

My kids (the ones who are supposed to learn everything they know from me!) say, “Don’t give up just because you encounter a bump in the road.” 

With trepidation, I called Allied Waste. BJ, a very courteous customer service representative, immediately informed me that I was SOL (Sure Out of Luck). Then, with no prompting, she asked me to hold. After only a couple seconds BJ came back on the line and said, “Leave the cans out. The dispatcher will try to reach a driver in the area and have them make a special stop.” Then she repeated emphatically, “Leave the cans out.” 

Life is good. All I did was make a phone call, ask for help . . . and leave the cans out! Good folks in the world responded. 

Making the mistake was foolish. Giving up would have been ridiculous. Admitting that I could learn from my kids was painful . . . but wise.

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