Yeah, I know, that pace. Still training the dogs to walk and it’s apparently going to take a while.
A few walks ago I noticed there were some recyclables on our path, and I picked them up on the way home. It wasn’t much – two aluminum cans, one bottle, one plastic bottle – but it adds up. Eventually. Last year I made roughly $100 on recycling, most of which went to our annual Yosemite trip. If you broke it down by time spent on recycling I’d have made about $10/hour, or right around minimum wage. Doesn’t seem like much, but it’s free money – I could just as easily have thrown all the recyclables away.
A while ago I saw the episode of “Penn & Teller’s Bullshit!” where they dismantled recycling. I don’t disagree with anything they said. On the surface, recycling is indeed bullshit. It doesn’t help the environment because of all the costs associated with recycling: the fuel used, the waste produced by the recycling plants, etc. I get that. I’m not in it because I’m a tree-hugging liberal. I’m in it because it gives me something to do on my walks, it helps make my area look a little bit better, and I get a small chunk of cash out of it. Any of those reasons by themselves would be enough. I think all three of them together outweigh the bullshit aspect of recycling. That may be selfish, but it’s my justification and I’m sticking with it, Penn & Teller be damned.