Recycling Is Not For Lazy People

, , , , | Friendly | April 10, 2019

I come to a recycling center and park my car on one of several smallish areas they have that can fit about three cars side by side. All the other spaces are empty. I have multiple paper bags as well as a large trash bag full of recycling filling up my back seat. A helpful employee brings over one of their large plastic bins to empty my recyclables into.

Meanwhile, a fancy convertible with its top down pulls in right next to me. It has one single trash bag with recycling sitting in the back seat. Just as I open my back door on the side that’s next to the convertible, the driver gets out of his car. He’s a healthy-looking guy in his 30s, and taller than me. Not thinking anything of it, I start emptying my many paper bags into the bin.

The guy is standing right behind my back, on the other side of my open back door. And standing. And standing. I slowly realize he’s staring at me. It seems creepy, but I just continue emptying my recycling into the bin.

Finally, after a couple of minutes of silent glaring at the back of my head, in a grating, annoyed voice, he goes, “Excuse me.”

I turn toward him, confused. “Um… yes?”

He goes, again, in an even more pissed-off tone, “Can I pass?” turning his gaze pointedly at the trash bag in his back seat and then glaring back at me.

Bewildered, I look at the fully open top of his car, at the trash bag in it which is at most two feet away from the other door of his car’s back seat, at the obvious fact that all three other sides of his car are completely unimpeded to access by anything whatsoever for at least a dozen feet around, that this man definitely looks stronger and more able-bodied than me, and that I’m certain he pulled in several minutes after me and deliberately parked very close to my car.

I look back at him incredulously. He’s still glaring at me expectantly, with an aggressive posture, getting more and more annoyed. He’s clearly indicating that I’m blocking his access out, against all reason and physical evidence to the contrary.

In this area of the city, I think better of risking getting into an altercation with a man, so — still in sheer disbelief — I go through pushing away the awkwardly heavy plastic bin, closing my back door, and moving out of his way. He impatiently and quite pointedly walks through the narrow space between our cars where I’m standing warily pressed against mine, then very easily grabs his trash bag out of his back seat and finally walks off.

I just stare after him, blinking slowly. Did that really just happen? Just how lazy and entitled can a person be?

Then, I open my door again, bend over, and reach all the way into my — non-convertible — car to haul out my full, large recycling bag from all the way over on the other side of the back seat, without any difficulty or complaining.

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