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My new friend Andrew Jackson and demonic rosettes …

Every once in a while a trash walker gets her/his just desserts. This was one of those mornings.

On the flip side, however, a new addition is welcomed to my ‘Most Hated’ list of junk.

So much for the serene piety of pre-dawn trash walks. Not this morning.

I didn’t sleep like a baby, but maybe a 12 or 14 year old. The internal alarm didn’t go off until 7:30, the rough (and glorious) equivalent of a teenager bagging until noon. By my standards, most trash walks would already be finished and litter would have been spilled all over the driveway for the obligatory photo op.

Owing to the later start, the sun was already well above the eastern horizon and it was much warmer than usual. But late start or no, the junk was still there. The bright morning just made litter a bit easier to spot.

It also made it easier to espy one of my luckier finds in recent memory.

As I reached Phillips Place, I veered onto the eastern entryway and cut through the parking lot to check out the theater marquee in case there was a film worth spending $7.50 on (senior rate). Since nothing piqued my interest, I kept on moving westward and soon was adjacent to the front door of Dean & DeLuca.



Trust me, ‘Old Hickory’ won’t be spent on coffee. Beer, maybe, but not coffee.

And there it was, folded and slightly rumpled on the curb just feet away from the trendy crowd sipping some pricey no foam-soy latte-frappachino concoctions on the trendy outdoor tables: The unmistakeable likeness of President Andrew Jackson on his namesake $20 bill. No doubt the trendy set saw me stoop to retrieve my new best friend. (If it was me ordering coffee, spare me the frills. Just give me something jet black with no room for cream.) But Andy will be spent one something else.

And that wasn’t the final monetary find. A dime and two pennies were located in close proximity to each other along Sharon Road.

Geez, I lived large this morning. The mere act of picking up junk always brings a measure of satisfaction and a sometimes-smile, but the fortuitous $20 made my grin a little wider.

Heretofore, the list of most-evil trash includes anything polystyrene, those disgusting tooth floss thingies, and drinking straws.

But there’s a new irritant that makes a debut at #4 on that most-sordid list.

There’s a peculiar kind of large clear plastic drink cup that I find with maddening regularity.

Purveyors of this insideous cup include P.F. Changs, Starbucks and Nordstrom’s, among others.


This isn’t a good representation of the classic rosette usually found, but it’s close enough. I hate these hard plastic cups. Hate ’em.

But here’s what really drives me crazy about these cups. When smashed, the plastic breaks lengthwise but the sides remain hinged to the round bottom, almost in a rosette shape. It makes it tough to tuck the remnants into the plastic Harris Teeter bag. The sharp edges often rip holes into the bag causing the contents to spill – the net effect of which really sends me into a rage.

So welcome these demonic rosettes to my most offensive list.

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.

2 Comments on My new friend Andrew Jackson and demonic rosettes …

  1. Judy Andersen // June 8, 2017 at 2:48 am // Reply

    Hey Dave! Good for you. Maybe I can take up your liter retrieving hobby and do some walking around Saddlebrook here in Omaha. Then I could also lose about 50 pounds before next years class reunion!!! Hope to see you Sept. 14, 15, 16, 2018. BHS Forever!

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