It started for me by being born and hearing my dad exclaim:”What have I done!” His exuberance caught my attention and I spent the first nine years of my life thinking, What Have I Done, was my name.

I learned the truth only when a cop caught me throwing crab apples at metal garage doors as a kid and said, “Turn around, kid, and, What have I done, isn’t your name.”  That night, dad told me about my name, about the nights I spent outside in a dog house, about that large food dish on the floor I thought was mine and my life has never been the same.

Gotta tell you, Men have it tough, rough—nothing comes simple to men.

I’ve lived a man’s life and I know jumping a few thirty to sixty years or so seems rash when it comes to one man’s history but really, other than a few embarrassing belly flops, slap down’s on dates like I was a pinata or doing time everyway possible making animal noises with other guys and geting stitched up after football practice, it’s better just to leap ahead and plop where I am on the night before the garbage man comes.

Every man knows when it’s the night before garabage collection. What every happened to the night before Christmas?

Everyman becomes a weight lifter when it comes to the dreaded trash night.

Face it, men take out the garbage. Seriously! Through snow, rain, sleet and even more snow, men are the ones who take out the trash week after perilous week, and all the way to the crubside!

It was freezing out; snow blowing….yikes!

It’s not like we can ditch the garbage along the driveway if the going gets rough. No, men have to make it to the road about every week with the multiple garbage loads.  Do you realize, have you ever in your dreams thought what might be out there between your houses’ garbage location and the street pick-up spot! Face it—men risk their lives once per week every week in most of suburbia here in America just to take out the trash…

My weekly mission is to make it out there; all the way, no matter how busy the street.

Our street is a tumbling crossroads where grass meets the pavement under a blizzard of slippery pine needles.

I don’t recall a single, well-acclaimed award being offered for the most definitively, effortlessly, artistic delivery of household garbage to a street corner by the man of the house. No, there isn’t one! Down trodden men do this job without a sniffle but for this post; that’s a mind blowing, painful fact of life for, “Hey wait a minute! It’s fourth and goal on the one yard line with ten seconds left,” beer drinking men who don’t really care if the gargabe lives another week or so to grow on the property.

“Garbage is like fine wine; it mellows with age, dear.” Unfortunately, the man who gave us this gem died while his home camera’s had been turned off and all the neighbors had been lurerd away from the community to watch the football game in a bar. No one knows what happened to him but does anyone know how the game turned out?

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We have to be skilled while moving the garbage…using every balance and preception muscle we have to make it thru the tightest of spots…

Almost thru!!!!

Dang it! But we don’t always make it on the first try…

Anyway, the snow had let up and my job lay before me…a horror show.

It was raining, a torential downpour, here moments before I had to carry out the recyclables tonight. I fought through the downpour which had lessened a bit to rain drops while carrying the recyclable bottle hoping to evade any snakes or gators who might lurk in the shadows. Of course, I wasn’t done. My feet hit the wet pavement, my breath heavy through the 99.9 % humidity, as my eyes scanned the dark for predators.

Snakes are everywhere in Florida, almost as many as there are hoses. I had to be careful to step over them and not on them…

But things happen….        Shadow was there ready to bark 911ish.

Our garbage collectors have the carboard small boxes and containers separated from the glass recyclable container but I swear, on more than one occassion, I’ve seen them mix these two separated containers together in the back of their truck.

And what about those larger, “Oh, I ordered an easy-to-assemble pre fab house, honey,” boxes we have to rip apart without remorse and then pile up along the roadside in the pouring rain which was by now, maybe, was a drizzle if I count that last drop that fell in the dark-as-a-street-light night? I heard a bear, or maybe a car, or plane, not sure, but it was a noise.

You had to have been there to imagine the terror.

There’s no reason to mention the smell of garbage cans full of rotting,”Let’s not have any,” leftovers, old beer bottles neighbors tossed into our containers and not really washed out well enough half and half containers. These smells men encounter while taking out the trash is one reason men live shorter lives than most women.  This is pure fact well establlished by facts that show men routinely live shorter lives than women. So, don’t let science get in the way of this. Period. Men suffer.

BTW… I still had to guide my cargo by my wife’s car: a narrow opening between “Scratch my car and I’ll kill you,” and the orange tree thorns that grab clothes and rip at flesh like piranhas who haven’t eaten in months.

I was soooo close to making it when an orange branch lunged my way; none of that was good.

“Trash removers…” The entire concept is demeaning, soul wrenching and socket delibitating to some men not strong enough to brace the darkness, the snakes, the smells, the bottom of the barrel tasks that are far worse than cleaning toilets.

Anyway, what does taking out the trash have to do with cleaning toilets? This is the first thing I heard from the heavens when I wrote this.*  I’m waiting for the answer.

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The whole, valid point of this post is that men are the trash removers. This, THIS, should have given all societies a head’s up on what’s what and who’s who when it comes to leading the way. I’ve said this in my books**, posts, jokes, bad thoughts and blabbering that for centuries Men have kept Women more-or-less in the dark, under the sheets,  when it comes to earning power, expression, thought, leadership and overall well being and state of mind. See? This is why the world is so screwed up right now! We have the trash removers running the world basically for ever and guess what’s going to the dump! The whole lot of us, maybe.

But who will find us?

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Franque23 is free until next Sunday night.

*My wife’s first evaluation….


All three links to my trilogy…. enjoy!