Dumpster Diving

February 4, 2009 | filed under give time/money, inspiring | 11 Comments 

I assure you that this is not what I did or ever will do.

Time waits for no one…every moment counts. Make it matter, right?

Yeah, I know. I need to keep all of this in mind. The blog entry you’re about to read was supposed to be written several weeks ago, but it was late…then, I was getting up early…and it happened all over again.

No more excuses.

So…dumpster diving. Considering the response I’ve received when I tell people this story, I might want to start with a definition of dumpster diving. A more accurate designation for the concept is called “urban foraging,” a tactic commonly used by freegans and homeless everywhere.

According to Freegan.info, “this technique involves rummaging through the garbage of retailers, residences, offices, and other facilities for useful goods. Despite our society’s sterotypes about garbage, the goods recovered by freegans are safe, useable, clean, and in perfect or near-perfect condition, a symptom of a throwaway culture that encourages us to constantly replace our older goods with newer ones, and where retailers plan high-volume product disposal as part of their economic model.”

One Friday evening, me and my companion VISTAs were enjoying frozen treats at Amy’s Ice Cream when Tina suggested we find a Panera and try dumpster diving. I was all in. Paul was hesitant, but more than willing to observe. We drove around in a circle for ten minutes before we finally found the Panera and started sleuthing around to find their dumpsters. We found a few different sets of dumpsters that, naturally, smelled atrocious and effectively killed the idea of eating, should we actually find anything.

Ready to give up, I suggested we ask where the dumpsters are, already expecting the answer to be no. We decided that Tina, being white, would ask…even if she couldn’t keep a straight face. While we were clean and well-groomed, I’m black, Paul’s Filipino, and we didn’t want to be negatively stereotyped.

We approach the set of front doors, now being wiped down by an employee since it’s past 10 and they’re closed. We motion for her to open the door. She tells us they’re closed. We persist, so she comes to the door. Tina, in her best efforts to be serious, blankly asks, “Yes, we’re wondering where your dumpsters are.” The lady doesn’t speak English very well, so Tina starts speaking in Spanish.

“This is even better!” I tell Paul.
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October 12, 2008 | filed under random, read this, thoughts | 1 Comment 

…are amazing.  Tonight, I checked my voicemail (no, I don’t do it regularly) and listened to a message from my pals Harry and Ashley that truly lifted my spirit.  :)  Thanks guys!

Texas isn’t a torture chamber, but it’s not really spectacular either.  To add to the lack of interesting things for me to do is immobility.  Or…perhaps it’s immobility that provides me with fewer options.  Eh…whichever.  Doesn’t matter much considering I’m not getting a car.

Being geographically unstimulated means that I rely more on electronic means of entertainment.  The problem with that…is that I already have an addiction.  Had an addiction.  Now, I have a mega addiction and an incredibly short attention span.

This makes me think of saKiya’s “talent, skill, discipline” from Think, Think, Think, and Think Again:

“It takes talent to get a tryout, skill to make the team, and discipline to win championships.  Most are born with some type of talent… Unfortunately, most don’t take the time to develop their talents into skills and even less of them become disciplined in it.  What good is it to take the time to develop a talent into a skill and never become discipline enough to know the how/when/where/why to apply it to its fullest?”

[Silent growl]

Yep…that’s me with the talent.  Guess I should use this “boredom” to develop some skills and discipline, yeah?

If I leave Texas with both, I’d be a happy camper.  To keep me focused, I might be relying on some of my pals until I have the discipline to rely on no one but me.  ;)  Yeah???

What good is anyone in your life if they can’t help you?  Thank you, you’re welcome.  Go after the win-win.

Laughter: Finding the good

September 19, 2008 | filed under great ideas, inspiring, plain cool, random, watch this | Leave a Comment 

There’s a connection between being able to find the good and being optimistic.  Optimists are usually in high spirits.  Laughter is one of the ingredients of that condition.  This made me laugh, so I thought I’d share.

The book she’s reading from is Thank you and You’re Welcome by Kanye West and j. SaKiya Sandifer.  SaKiya’s mission is to be a spark to those who want to create a positive change in their lives.  Being a friend of his, I can personally attest to the fact that he is definitely a spark and will make you think during every single interaction with him.  His first book is actually entitled Think Think Think and Think Again.  Both are worthwhile reads that are certain to be of inspiration to you on some level or another.