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The flag carrier at the front of the parade struggled to keep the Stars and Stripes and the Gadsden Flag from crashing to the ground as the wind whipped at the top of the 30-foot flag pole. He thought perhaps agreeing to carry both flags was a poor choice. Behind him a band of cowboys and their ladies carried various flags. Children wandered away toward the street causing the mothers to pull them back. The flag carrier hesitated slightly as the crowd moved up. He seemed to sense the parade was slowing down; the participants unsure of their route. He pressed on with both flags dipping behind him. At the end of the marchers, a cowboy blew on a sheep horn. A low, mournful cry wafted over the parade. The group marched forward as the man with the sheep’s horn ran to catch up.
“I’m just going to take a quick walk to stretch my back.”
“Does your chair tighten you up too?”
“I heard a rumor we might get new chairs.”
“I heard it too.”
“Either they give us new chairs or they supply us with an unlimited supply of Ibuprofen.”
“Honestly, either option couldn’t hurt.”
I wonder what archaeologists will say about my trash. Will they question why I needed to eat so many pop-cycles finding only five-inch sticks at the bottom of an eroded bag? Or why I threw out a stack of unopened junk mail promising millions if I just entered the clearinghouse sweepstakes? Does the unopened mail mean something and should I have recycled it?
I never used to worry about my garbage. It would go into a can, the trash man would lift it into the truck, and away it would go to the landfill. Then Earth Day came along and I have wondered if I am doing enough to reduce my trash thumbprint of waste? I threw away my entire collection of Mother Earth News magazines and replaced them with a thumb drive with 40 years worth of magazines in roughly three inches. I now wonder if someone will find the magazines and wonder why I was so wasteful? They will never find the zip drive; I plan on hiding it in my junk drawer. Hopefully, I won’t get the bright idea to empty it.
Too much stuff ending up in an archaeologist’s museum. Here is a stack of battered and torn magazines advocating against too much waste. And over here, is the same pile of magazines in a plastic memory device. At least the paper can degrade; they memory stick will be around for a long, long, time.
© 2017, Michael Shawn Sommermeyer. All rights reserved.