Sunday, September 2, 2007

hard rubbish

For the love of West Torrens hard rubbish collection days if this isn't performance art then we don't know what is.

Keeps folks entertained too. One bloke, bending and reaching out a hand to better inspect a yellow Tonka truck parked crookedly on a suburban verge, fairly jumped out of his skin when Skanky called out from across the street, "Careful or you'll end up like me!". The bending man, hesitating, gestured and half laughed something that said "No way not me!" and straightening, left the toy to walk on with his roll of chook wire in check.

Skanky's 'careful' possibly worried the bending and straightening man as much as her appearance did, or so we guess, because some people (oddly enough), think that rummaging around in other people's hard rubbish is akin to petty larceny. In fact the skank has twice been reprimanded because of her tendency to find good stuff. We think this kind of reuse is what Michel de Certeau would call a "ruse" or what the Zero Waste crew would call "doing the world a favour". Regardless, domestic possessions cast off to the tune of spring birdsong fill a skanks' wandering soul with joie d'vie.

A sedan pulled up in front of a particularly interesting mountain of expired necessity and a young man and woman stepped out from it and on to the warm bitumen. Approaching them so conspicuously laden gave Skanky premonitions of a snickering welcome. "Is this yours?" she inquired, gesturing toward the mountain and asking if it was ok to 'pick through'. The young man answered that it was ok, adding with a casual laugh that they had no use for it. Something with wheels suggested respite to the skanks' aching tenacity and covetous eye. Peering and then tugging at a rope attached to the object, she asked, "Did your Dad make this?"

"No", replied the young man,"my brother. He used it for his model aeroplane". Smiling, Skanky checked once more that it was ok to take it, and reassured, extracted a small custom made wooden cart from the family pile. Perfect!

With a large outdoor umbrella completing this, her last curb side 'purchase' for the morning, Skanky repacked. The small, wooden cart carried the padded footstool and the black attaché case (bound together by the dressing gown sash), plus the stack of plant pots and metal buckets. The lamps, the dressing gown and other small items, packed inside the brown suitcase, and the big umbrella and one corner of the brown suitcase, poked into the already stuffed old, yellow trolley. Duly organised, SJ managed the handlebars of her push-bike with one hand and both the yellow trolley handle, and the tow rope of the little wooden cart, with the other hand then resumed her drift.

Half a block later, veering right, the stack of plant pots and metal buckets slipped through the footstools' short legs announced Skanky's procession, following the curve of a broad grey corner, with a startling percussion. Across the road from the scene of this incidental din, the tram crossing and it's cyclone fenced, three point zig-zag loomed. Home now within shouting distance, the skank rescued her pots and buckets, settled them back in place and determined to manoeuvre, in turn, each of her three vehicles through each of the three turns and over the crossing. A family, composed of one woman, one man and one small child, sat at the tram shelter opposite waiting relaxedly for their ride to the Bay.

The yellow trolley went through first. Crossing the tram-line, Skanky leaned on its' handle, easing the wheels gently over each track with her foot. When she was three quarters of the way across the man left his seat and came to her aid. Seeming disconcerted, he spoke a few quick, uncertain directions and readjusted the brown suitcase on top of the yellow trolley. Skanky said "thanks, that was much better now", and reassuring him with several, bright smiling "I'm okays", saw him return to his family. Finally, the trolley, the bike, the small wooden cart and their cargo navigated the zig-zaging crossing and rails - intact. Walking a final stretch of familiar footpath toward home, a musk lorikeet, sailing a warm breeze, dipped and rose overhead, the green of its' back made brilliant in the sun.

Skanky got:

1 yellow trolley (to match SJs' yellow, plastic raincoat 'n' pants)
1 'budgie blue' indoor blind (fits that window perfectly!)
1 lamp on a stand (with two lights)
2 lamps of ghastly goodness
2 lamps on a clamp (reading in bed!)
1 custom made wooden trolley
2 curtain rods (for the small windows)
2 plastic pots for plants (with water wells!)
1 old enamel bucket (cute)
1 old style brown suitcase with key
1 padded footstool (for flat footed flaneuses)
1 large outdoor umbrella (to go with the outdoor set!)
2 brand new pairs of thongs
1 winter dressing gown (pure wool in tiptop nick!)
1 air purifier/ioniser (for the filthy habit)
1 old style soap saver
1 brand new (still in the packet) pair of white cotton socks
2 brand new men's hankies
3 brand new women's hankies
1 black attaché case with wheels and an extension handle
1 small green metal bucket with floral design
2 boxes of CD/DVD cases
4 unopened ink cartridges (for the printer)
1 old style wooden tray with stand (so Arty can eat his snags in bed!)
6 wooden drum sticks
1 acoustic guitar


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