Saturday, July 11, 2009

That Takes You Back...

Wow!

I saw something this morning that really took me back.

A garbage man was riding on the back of the garbage truck. You don't see that here anymore. It is rare enough to see more than one person working the truck, what with the automated claws that lift the trash can up and dump it in the truck.

It actually made me daydream for a minute, about how I used to stand in the front yard of our house as a kid and watch the garbage truck roll down the street. The guys hanging on the back would jump off and grab those big ass metal cans with the huge hook shaped handle. They slung these cans over their shoulder and actually walked into your yard, where they emptied your trash can into their big metal can, that they then carried back and dumped in the back of the truck.

Now, you roll your own damned trash to the curb,where the truck does the work. Yes, it makes perfect sense to do it this way, saving manpower and creating fewer injuries, but the cool factor was lost when they guys quit riding on the back of the trucks.

This got me to thinking about how the firefighters in our town used to ride on the tailboard of the fire engine. It was just how it was done. It was expected.

Then someone came up with the bright idea to put an extra couple of jump seats on the back of the cab, so the firefighters could ride under cover. Now, the jump seats are completely inside the air conditioned comfort of the cab. Friggin' lazy hosedraggers. Where's the cool factor in that?

What's the point of all this? Well, there isn't one.

I'm just taking a mental journey back to how things were thirty years ago.

No point...

10 comments:

RockDog said...

Hi Officer Smith,

Just wanted to drop a quick note to tell you that I really enjoy reading you blog. The insight you provide is very interesting and the way you present it is very entertaining.

Thank you and stay safe!

R

TheBronze said...

Everything was better 30 years ago...

Roanoke Cop said...

I live in the country where they still ride on the trucks. Although now they aren't allowed to pick up the trash can because it might be too heavy. All your trash has to be bagged up for them to lift out of the can one at a time.

Beat And Release said...

Remember the days when your first job was usually 'paperboy?" You don't see them anymore, either. I enjoyed that job.

Officer "Smith" said...

Yeah, now all the paper "boys" are unlicensed illegal Brazilians driving hoopty Hondas.

And I assure you, I am NOT kidding.

fuzzys dad said...

Your story took me down memory lane also. Thanks.

Jennica said...

It is funny you wrote this this week. We live in a good size metro area and we are just finally getting the one maned, automatic trucks. It has been two weeks now.

My 4yr old son loves watching the garbage trucks and men for your reasons. This week was the his first time seeing the fancy new trucks. When I asked him what he thought he told me that it was 'magic' now. So he still sees wonder in the garbage man. 8)

Front Porch Society said...

We still have garbage truck men who ride on the back...so if you ever want to reminisce, you can come to where I live. :)

Jacob said...

The trash guys here on the East Coast still ride on the outside of their trucks... but no, we can't ride the tailboard of the fire apparatus any more. That's a sad thing, but way too many of us got killed doing it.

Capt. Schmoe said...

Now that I look back, riding on the tailboard had its moments, but overall, it was overrated. On a warm day with a lot of pretty women cruisin' by it was pretty cool.

On a wet or cold night, or behind a whacko engineer (driver) or driving around on a major brush fire, I don't miss it.

I seem to remember coppers driving around two up in a cruiser back in the day as well!!

Thanks for the post