Wednesday, September 29, 2010
My Grandma used to freeze her trash. I thought it was crazy too, until I considered what trash she was freezing. She was only freezing the trash that would cause a stink until it could be taken by the trash man. Leftover carcasses, scraps of casseroles, bones or any food that would rot and leave any odor would be wrapped in foil and put into the freezer until trash day. This could be seen as over orderly, OCD, desperately neat, any title you feel it deserves to make sense of it. But now, at this age, in this time, I get it. I would freeze my trash. Then. But now, we don't have the need, or the inclination. We have disposals (if you are lucky) we have weekly or biweekly trash removal. Recycling, composting, plastic wrap, plastic storage that could survive in space is how we handle leftover food now.
She had a trash compactor for many many years, longer than I was aware of any sort of disposal. I thought it was fun, even a bit exciting to put the tiniest bit of rubbish in the compacter and listen to it crush into near oblivion. The thought of where it was going, who took it there and how long it stayed, was never an issue. Never brought up. The big black plastic bag was just taken out, out into the metal bin and then taken away. Away.
I have been thinking about the freezing. The freezing of what would be offensive, the leftovers, the stink. We have these reminders, scars of what has happened in our lives that we sometimes have no idea what to do with, where to put them. Can we just freeze them, until they are so cold, hard and brittle that we either don't feel them anymore or they are covered up in the back of who we are that we forget? The problem is the thaw and the ultimate stink that will choke up your whole life again. I don't know if there is any away that is away enough to throw these memories and who will hold them? Who is in charge of burning the heap?