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A stern message every hour on every channel…

My good friend Dave and I walk the golf course whenever we can. Yeah, there’s lots of golf talk, but we also yammer about bird species we see at our feeders and other mundane stuff. We don’t talk a lot of politics because he’s on one side and I’m on the other.

Lately though, there is something we both agree on.

When we're hoofing it on the course and not trying to beat each other's brains in, Dave (far right) and I sometimes try to figure out what is inherently wrong with slobs who have no couth when it comes to stowing trash in the most ethical and environmentally acceptable manner.

When we’re hoofing it on the course and not trying to beat each other’s brains in, my friend Dave and I sometimes try to figure out what is inherently wrong with slobs who have no couth when it comes to making North Carolina roadsides look like pig styes – or maybe pig sty is an upgrade. Some roadsides look worse than a sty.

Dave, an occasional visitor to these pages, and I have talked about ‘what’s up with the *^&%#@ morons who think nothing of littering our highways and byways?’ Last Sunday we played a course out in the boonies but we both noticed, independent of each other, how incredibly messy the rural roadsides were along our separate routes to the course. Shoulders adjacent to the paved surfaces were lined with incredible amounts – heaps, mounds, piles – of plastic and polystyrene and all manner of other debris. In all honesty, there could not have been a foot between sizably noticeable chunks of junk along significant stretches of highway. If there hadn’t been cars trucking along at high speed behind me, I would’ve stopped to snap a few damn-those-idiots photos. Lord knows I’ll have plenty of other chances as I journey to other out-of-the-way golf courses. The roadsides will look all the same (scroll down to my Feb. 26 post as one slovenly example).

So why the hell don’t people learn?

The answer, Dave suggests, is that we don’t teach them anymore. He reminded me that we were younger – a lot younger – there seemed to be many, many more anti-litter messages on TV. Perhaps a few more public service announcements (PSAs) might bolster a message that is sorely needed. As my dim memory recalls, wasn’t the gist of the bygone messages to put trash in its place? (This would be a great way for an up-and-coming ad agency to build a crackerjack campaign that would grab the attention of slobs and non-slobs alike.)

Aside from more frequency – hey, if it were up to me I’d suggest hourly on every channel – the message ought to be updated to include recycling. But I’d settle for people doing the minimal: at least disposing of their junk in an acceptable manner or at best adequately stowing their refuse in recycle bins.

About Dave Bradley (264 Articles)
I was a writer by trade so one would think letters would come easily for me. It is so now, but wasn't always that way. Indeed, the first letter was written the Monday after Ellen started her freshman year in college. For years I've wondered - with no good answers - why I swiveled my office chair toward my computer screen to fire up a word processing document for that first letter. I just don't know. I just did. Perhaps it was the angst of separation or wanting to say things that had gone unsaid at that moment when we parted ways in front of her college dormitory. What was a one-off became habitual. When her brother Reid enrolled in the same college, his name was added to the salutation line. They were kids then and are adults now. No matter. The letter writing habit remains so today. I live in Brevard, North Carolina. I'm well away from where they live and don't see them nearly as often as I'd like. That's why letters, at least to me, fill the void of distance. The pages give me something to say and the space to say it. There is no assurance they read the letters; indeed, I have never asked if they do so. With the pace of their busy lives who could blame them for letting a letter sit unopened? Over time, it has dawned on me that the letters are both communicative - and cathartic. By nature, letters are about the writer; the writer can only write about their situation. Perhaps that is as it should be. It's all about the here and now from one person's perspective.

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