Do you recycle?

I had some neighbors over the other night for dinner. When it was time to clean up, my neighbor said, “Where’s your recycle bin?”

I didn’t hesitate, I pointed to the trash can. “Right there.”
She looked confused, “No, the recycle bin.”

I told her we didn’t recycle. She flashed a look of judgment that seemed involuntary. Donnie, sensing the judgment from the other room (ok he was drinking a beer in the driveway), yelled, “Yeah we don’t care about the environment.”

Neighbor laughs uncomfortably.

I add to Donnie’s comment, “He’s kidding. We like the IDEA of recycling.”
Donnie: “We’d do it if they didn’t charge us extra.”

So now, we’re not only tree-haters, we’re cheap too.

I try smooth things over a little with a, “Well, we don’t dispose of much.” (Not true) “We use a lot of reusable containers.” (Also not true) And then I follow with a bleak interest in purchasing a recycle bin and paying a monthly fee. I joke that I will use the money I usually deposit in my kids’ college fund. It didn’t go over well.

Now when I get home every day, I run inside for fear my neighbor will ask, “Did you get a recycle bin?”

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