Tuesday, December 14, 2010


“Carpet bombing” is what the Allied Forces in World War II did to the city of Dresden (chronicled famously in Kurt Vonnegut’s classic Slaughterhouse Five); the term typically refers to the devastating practice of laying waste to civilian population centers by dropping down a carpet of bombs from airplanes overhead. That military strategists and world leaders could consider such a policy morally acceptable, even in a so-called “just war,” just goes to show how corrupting war is and how any attempted justifications for mass murder inevitably fail.

But on a lighter note, the term might refer to what Jen and I did to the soaked rugs salvaged from our basement following Sunday morning’s minor flooding; today we sliced up the worst of them and slid them out the ground-level window, from where I gathered the pile up and put it on the Haulin’ Colin trailer to carry to the dump—I mean “transfer station”—in Fremont.

According the facility’s scale, I hauled about 120 pounds of sopping wet acrylic fiber from home to trash heap and that’s apt, I guess, since just the other day, the material was part of our home; now, it’s just garbage. Usually, that transition takes a bit longer than 24 hours, except for Christmas morning, when something can go from being Robosapien to plastic detritus in less than half a day.

The trailer, of course, performed beautifully with its relatively heavy load; I was a tiny bit miffed that the guy at the transfer station didn’t go all awestruck at my awesomeness in carrying all that trash by human power and simply wave me through without a fee. As it was, he charged me the flat-fee car rate of thirty dollars. It probably would have been less to pile the stuff in trash bags and have the garbage men collect it on Friday, but then I wouldn’t have earned the moral high ground and more importantly, the right to an afternoon nap.


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