Every week, after they empty our trash can's contents into their truck, they launch the can and the lid, usually separately, on an impressive trajectory in what could be considered the general direction of our house.
I wonder if this is their subtle way of commenting on the putrid bags of cat litter we toss out on a regular basis.
Last summer, the can and lid flew a good twenty feet into the woods by our house, landing several feet from each other in a bed of poison ivy.
I dressed for the trash can retrieval like I was on a hazmat team. My pants were tucked into my socks. My sleeves were tucked into a pair of garden gloves. My hair was stuffed underneath a hat. All this in mid-July. I wore only old clothes that I could theoretically bear to part with, just in case everything got contaminated and needed to be incinerated later. I tiptoed over the poison ivy and handled the trash can as if it were a live bomb.
As soon as I had dragged the trash can back to the driveway, I rushed inside and took a panicked shower.
Miraculously, I was spared and did not get a rash.
We've actually come to rely upon discovering our trash can in bizarre positions and locations, as an indicator that the trash was, indeed, collected as scheduled. This has become such a regular thing that last week, when we found our trash can sitting perfectly upright, lid fastened, on the day after trash day, we were confused.
This week, I was actually a little bit comforted to see the trash can, once again, lying on its side near our mailbox, lid ajar. Like a thoughtful, passive-aggressive message meant just for us.