Friday, October 10, 2008

As I've mentioned a few times before, there's a city park directly across the street from the house. According to the locals its been here for at least forty years, but over the summer it got a renovation after falling into disrepair and now it is a Very Nice Park. There's a playground and a lighted pavilion and a drinking fountain for both humans and dogs. There are benches and tables and several massive shade trees - pecan, oak, and, yes, persimmon. It's all very well tended and watched over by the people of the neighbourhood, and every other week there seems to be a cookout or a birthday party going on. It's nice to see.

What isn't so nice is the rather ridiculous amount of garbage people leave strewn about. There are some things that a playground is just bound to accumulate - otter pop wrappers, plastic spoons, the odd sock - but honestly, a half-full Big Gulp? An empty Church's box? Old cigarette packs? That's not kids being irresponsible, it's adults who can't be arsed to walk the nine desolate feet between the park bench and the municipal trash can.

It shouldn't bother me, really. People have been doing this since the days when farming was just a madcap scheme in the head of some enterprising hunter-gatherer type. We built our encampments on clamshell middens and bones. Early middle eastern civilizations rose and fell atop gigantic tells made of old building materials. If people didn't leave garbage everywhere they went, archaeologists in a hundred years would be out of a job.

I just worry a bit when WALL-E begins to look less like a fantasy film and more like some sort of grimdark documentary into the planet's swiftly oncoming future.

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