Tips for dealing with your garbage during the garbage strike:



Researching what i could do with my garbage, I found that most sources are granola bloggers who’ve really just taken this opportunity to brag about how they compost on their bicycles, make art from old pop cans and buy nothing. This is my list of helpful tips for real people. I’m not going to sugar coat this or pretend that these solutions are green or fair or even practical. But if you are truly stuck and don’t know what to do with your garbage, hold your breath and consider these tips.

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Remi Exclusive Tips:

-Empty your recycling bin into bags and fill it with garbage instead. The raccoons won’t tear into a bag of recycling so you can leave it beside the can with no midnight messes.

-Buy flushable kitty litter. It’s called Feline Fresh and it comes in a purple bag. It’s fine sawdust. I’ve used it 2 years no problems, but its expensive. . .. .You know, unless you plan to put cat shit in your freezer.

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-Flush it, that part of the city is still functioning. Last night i flushed some old leftovers away. . . .Flushing food, its funny when you think about it, you’re just cutting out the middle man.

-Pull out the old garbage cans you used to use and fill them too. Don’t worry, they’re going to need to pick up everything when the strike is over. I’m sure they’d rather it be in an old can than on the sidewalk.

-Burn it. Oh man i hope people don’t do that.

-Keep it on the roof, the smell is above you and you won’t have to look at it.

-Call your landlord, they’re not going to want rats on the lawn either, maybe they have a truck.

-Triple bag it and use it like bean bag chairs

-Mix liquidy stuff together in garbage bags with absorbent stuff. So it doesn’t leak everywhere while it rots on your porch.

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Good Green Solutions:
-Compost it! Its summer, it’ll cook up good.- doesn’t work on cans and plastic (unless you can wait centuries)

-Use lots of re-usable containers instead of the disposable types stores give out. Tupperwear, cloth shopping bags, water bottles, coffee mugs can all supplement the usual throwaways.

-Avoid heavy garbage producing purchases: take out, over packaged electronics, individually wrapped food. . . .also buy in bulk if you can.

-Freeze greenbin bound leftovers so they don’t rot and stink.

Other Options:
-Take it to the city park/dumps. You already know this.

-Google or Craigslist. Many people are doing private pickups for $5 a bag. You probably already know this.

-Take it to a real dump- great if you’ve got a car which i don’t.

-Feed it to your cat. I guess most of you don’t have a 30lb cat like i do. The big guy could rip through a metal pipe if it had a cream filling.

-If you’re going to dump it illegally somewhere, which many of you will. Don’t be a dummy and leave mail or something with your name on it in the bag.

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-Dump it in the parking lot of the mall or store where you buy things.

The last one’s my favourite. Listen. We should not be paying for waste removal, it should not be the public’s burden. Corporations keep selling us crap that’s over packaged and designed to break. Try and buy a lasting dvd player or cell phone, how about a light bulb? Toothpaste comes in a tube in a box, cereal comes in a small bag in a huge box, milk comes in a bag in a bag; they make it big and flashy so you think you’re getting a deal and they make it shitty so you’re forced to buy a replacement soon. The more stuff you throw out, the more you’ve purchased and consumed. Its profitable for corporations to sell you wasteful goods. All this unnecessary corporate waste is very expensive for the taxpayer to clean up. Look at the tension the cost of waste removal is causing; the city is descending into chaos again trying to maintain its basic services. If corporations needed to pay for their planned waste, they’d need to rethink their strategies and start designing quality products instead. I”m quite serious about dumping it in their parking lots, we should be doing this even when there is no strike.

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More Info, Music and a Garbage Strike Poll here: Toronto Garbage Strike Ends!!!

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10 Responses to “Tips for dealing with your garbage during the garbage strike:”

  1. Toronto Garbage Strike Ends!!! « The Remi Stevens Bolg Says:

    [...] Sorry if you came here thinking this was a legitimate source of information and that the strike was actually over. Its the old bait and switch I’m afraid. I do offer some good solutions here:Tips for dealing with your trash during the strike [...]

  2. ponch58 Says:

    I had planned to take a load of shingles to the dump today. However, after reading your article I decided to take your advice. I drove all the way to Toronto and dumped them in the middle of the Roger’s Center.

  3. torontocitylife Says:

    Good tips (especially the toilet), but I must take exception with the bagging-to-prevent-raccoons thing; they should be encouraged! (in a controlled way)

    I also made a list. It’s considerably shorter but no less effective (and my apartment smells very pleasant):

    http://www.torontocitylife.com/2009/06/26/war-on-trash-day-5/

  4. remistevens Says:

    Good list. . . ..wait til it turns to goo, then flush it- excellent. I’ll bet maggots can go down the toilet also.

    Great images and photography on your blog, not sure i share your view of the dispute though. I have trouble blaming workers for wanting to maintain the deal they have. I work, we’re all in this together. Public sector labour sets the bar, if they don’t deserve bankable sick days, I’ll never get it.

    Striking is the one and only way workers can demand they keep their deal, but they’ve got no right to block the temp dumps.

    The city shouldn’t have started these dumps in the first place. You can’t just pretend everything is fine and let the garbage pile up, its extremely irresponsible. They keep bragging about the money they’re saving, but the reality is the garbage is still in the city and they’re paying to store it, so how can they be saving long term?

    When the strike began, waste management should have stopped, period. The pressure to end the strike would have brought a resolution long before now. Instead poor neighbourhoods have lost their parks while condo owners and people with cars are experiencing little inconvenience. I can’t open the front window of my fully attached home because we’ve had no choice but to pile the garbage on the front lawn and my park is a cesspool.

    The union didn’t pile garbage into my park.

  5. torontocitylife Says:

    Yeah, my local park site is starting to expand too. But I think that you may be overlooking something: what deal?

    That deal you’re referring to has expired and the point of deals expiring is that they must be renegotiated, and that’s because circumstances may change. Like they have. Again, they *don’t* have a deal and harping on about whatever they may have managed to squeeze out of taxpayers the last time is nonsense.

    I’m not suggesting a wholesale strip-down of everything that was in the last agreement but expecting everything to stay the same is a head-in-the-rectum approach. The union is so out of touch with reality, they may as well not be on the same planet.

    I also work and I’ve *never* had bankable sick days — so when you say they’re setting the bar, for who? How has your life improved since the strike of 2002 as a result of their efforts? Your taxes are higher, I bet.

    More importantly, why do they deserve it? Even if they did have an influence on private sector practices — which they don’t (and don’t care in the least about) — what’s the justification behind this feeling of entitlement? I see the job they’ve done in and around my neighbourhood (and a good chunk of the city) over the past year — not to mention watching the amount of effort that residents have put in making up for their absence during this strike — not only do they not deserve bankable sick days, the majority of them should be fired and either be forced to re-apply for their jobs (justify their exorbitant demands), or hit the bricks and find out how the real world operates.

    You are right that striking is their only option, but they’re striking over absurd issues.

    I respectfully think your absolutely wrong on this issue. The reason we’re in this mess is because of the ludicrous agreements that were ratified in the past, some of them even going so far as to become bylaws. And yes, they are legally allowed to picket and temporarily block dump sites. Thanks to previous agreements, they can’t be fired, are allowed to continue their awful behaviour, and are ensured that they get to keep suckling at the taxpayer’s tit for many years to come. We should absolutely NOT give in to their demands.

    Do you know why the unions were so upset when the last proposal by the city went public? Because, and this is a direct quote, “they went directly to the union members instead of coming to the leadership.” To paraphrase, we don’t want you going to our members and allowing them to make up their own minds. It’s the same as when they called residents “scabs” for trying to clean up their own properties — they’re just spoiled little kids who think they deserve everything right now.

    And then there’s the poor 79 union, some of who’s members don’t have any sick days, etc. but got lumped into this ridiculous protest by the 416. In other words, if they’re so concerned about equality, why are they only bringing it up now?

    Finally, you’re right, the union didn’t pile the garbage up into parks. What they’d like is for the trash to pile up in your house, in your front yard, etc. — they want everyone to hurt as much as possible because their infantile demands aren’t being taken seriously, as they shouldn’t. So while the city took some unpopular but necessary steps, the union would’ve left you to rot in your own filth and good riddance.

  6. torontocitylife Says:

    I think that’s the longest comment I’ve ever written! I feel pretty strongly about this :)

  7. remistevens Says:

    Hey Patrick,

    No worries, I love getting into it. Write away, long comments always welcome here. Thanks, I’ve been wondering why there have been no anti-union comments here yet. I also just put up a new post I wrote yesterday I’m sure you will hate.

    The “Deal”? Maybe i should have said “income”. By accepting the new contract these workers would be accepting a lowered income. If you think they’re getting too much, fine, don’t give them an increase and wait for inflation to catch up with them. They have a right to strike and they’re protecting themselves from an employer whose trying to decrease their income. If we don’t allow workers to do that, we might as well turn the clock back 150 years and start dying in factories again.

    Is the “new circumstance” this Fake Global Recession?. Its a blip my friend, we don’t need to start giving back our paycheques because the media and our Prime Minister whipped everyone into a frenzy. Things will recover, everything will be fine.

    I am actually very affected by this outcome directly, i will not lie to you. I’m a union member of a large public/private institution- been there 2 years. For 40 years our members had 9 bankable sick days a year, then we gave them up in negotiations 5 years ago. Employees used to come into work sick or not so they could bank their days, now when people are sick they don’t come in. Its created a nasty work environment. Managers accuse sick workers of lying, and bad workers abuse the system. They’re considering bringing back the old system and we renegotiate next year. The outcome of this civic workers strike will certainly set a standard which will factor into our negotiation. When i worked in the private sector, i always brought up higher paid public workers when negotiating with my boss. Maybe you don’t negotiate this way, but you should, it works.

    Compare civic workers to a private sector housekeeper making $10 an hour. If the housekeeper has a family, she’s working 70-80hrs a week to afford the cost of living in Toronto. Maybe you feel civic workers deserve the same fate? If you want to eliminate the union, this is what you are pitching . . ..Seeing your kids is hardly an exorbitant demand.

    The union doesn’t want us rotting in garbage, they want to keep their sick days.

    Its a legal strike, workers need to be allowed to strike.

  8. Toronto Civic Workers Strike and the City Dumps on the Poor « The Remi Stevens Bolg Says:

    [...] There are not a lot of topics I’ve done three posts on, but my computer is in the living room and its hard not to be thinking about this. Also see Toronto Garbage Strike Ends! and Tips For Dealing With Your Garbage [...]

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