We don't live in the middle of nowhere, but I really wouldn't say we live in the middle of somewhere either. Given our geographic location, you could almost guess that trash pickup is not provided by our little town of 4,000. As such, this leaves families like mine with two options. You can either a) haul your trash to the dump yourself, or b) hire someone to haul your trash to the dump for you.
When we first moved into our house and heard about option b, it sounded completely extravagant to ears like mine. "Hire someone to haul our trash? That sounds expensive," I thought.
And then the trash man knocked on our door. His name is Bruce, he drives a pickup truck with homemade plywood sides, and he charges $3 a week. On the other hand, maybe we could afford a little extravagance in our lives. I hired him on the spot. We sealed the deal with a handshake (no credit check required), and he took our trash that day.
For the price he charges, I've got to say that Bruce provides exemplary customer service. He doesn't ask me to put our trashcans on the curb, or even in the driveway. As long as I open the garage door , Bruce is more than happy to empty my cans one by one, and return them to their designated spots. Then he sorts my recycling and leaves the bin by my door--you know, so I don't forget to put it back into my kitchen.
He takes carpet, he take scrap metal. He'd probably take a live, rabid wolf to the SPCA and never charge an extra cent for it.
I love Bruce. And so does James. Wouldn't you, too?
Trash day is Saturday, and when I forget to open the garage door, Bruce rings the doorbell, waits, and happily provides a reminder. "Up n' at 'em," he kids, admiring my weekend bedhead.
But of course, since the Good Lord tells us that there's opposition in all things, there are many Saturday mornings when I plain old wish that Bruce wasn't so damn devoted to the art of picking up trash.
As usual, I forgot to open the garage door, and it's plainly obvious that someone is home this morning. I think the clear view of the three-year-old watching inappropriate cartoons through the storm door gives it away.
So there I am, singing some J-Lo and lathering up my lady parts in the shower when I heard to doorbell ring.
"Sh*t," I thought. And the doorbell rang again.
"Super sh*t," I said out loud. And the mother lovin' doorbell rang again.
I knew, full well, that Bruce's superior customer service skills would not allow him to give up until my son's urine-soaked nighttime pull-ups were resting securely in the bed of his truck.
I stepped out of the shower and heard James saying, "My mom is in da shower. I will go and get her for you." And just like that, James whipped open the bathroom door, exposing my condition to the entire neighborhood through two picture windows and the sidedoor. One false move and the trash man would see me in all of nature's glory, and unfortunately, closing the door fell into the "false move" category.
"James," I said, "get Mommy a towel and close the door." Being the obedient, well-mannered child that he is, James ran away, screaming like a banshee, ignoring my request.
I scanned the bathroom, and thanks to my chronic lack of prior preparation, the only thing in reach that even resembled a towel was a bathmat--certainly not substantial enough to cover my ass, which has expanded to the size of Idaho in recent months.
"JAMES! YOU WILL GET YOUR MOTHER A TOWEL IMMEDIATELY," I howled. Following it up with, "Be right there, Bruce," int the sweetest voice I could muster.
So I did what any right minded woman in my situation would do. I tore down the vinyl shower curtain liner, wrapped it around my naked self five or six times, and casually and confidently walked out to answer the door--curtain rings and all.
"Hi Bruce," I said, looking like some kind of giant ecru burrito with soap on top. "Let me get the garage door for you." And I shuffled through the mudroom out into the garage.
I pressed the button, and the garage door opened to reveal Bruce, snickering like a school girl. "Sorry," he said. "I knew you was home cause of the little guy. But I had no idea that you was in the showah."
"Oh that's no problem," I replied, dismissing the situation with a little flick of my hand. "No problem at all," and a shower curtain hook pinged against the tile. "Have a nice day!"
I shut the door and shuffled back to the bathroom, completely humiliated. During my walk of shame, I firmly locked eyes with my son and said, "You will sit in timeout until you're a grownup!"
He looked at his feet, said, "I know Mommy," and collapsed onto the floor in a raging fit of toddler giggles.
So far, I'd have to say that this weekend is off to an excellent start.