I like to think that the majority of Woodhaven residents are good people who care about their community and their neighbors. And I believe that of those residents, those that read this column regularly are especially fine people. And good looking, too.
Instead, this week’s column is directed at the small percentage of Woodhaven residents who have difficulty disposing of their garbage. “Hygienically challenged” might be the politically correct way to say it. I prefer a simpler, more direct term.
You people are freaking slobs.
Loose garbage on the streets of New York is nothing new, but it’s never been anything close to this bad and it’s getting worse. It’s not the city’s fault or the fault of the Department of Sanitation. It’s the people who live in our midst; the slobs.
The people that buy a slice of pizza and casually let the paper or the napkin fall to the sidewalk. The people who walk their dog and leave a foul deposit in front of your house. The people who toss their cigarettes out of their car window, or even worse empty their ashtrays into the street while sitting at a red light.
Freaking slobs. There’s no other way to put it.
Almost every morning, the track at Victory Field is covered with litter from the slobs that play soccer at night. There are garbage cans at each entrance and at the middle of the track, And yet these slobs drop their garbage all over the place like a spoiled three-year old brat who thinks mommy will follow them cleaning up their mess.
It’s inconsiderate. It’s ignorant. It’s disgusting. And if you are one of the people responsible for making this mess, then you are a slob.
The other day, while we were at the car show in Forest Park, we spoke with a man who has lived in Woodhaven for decades who has finally decided to pack it in and leave. “If you don’t mind me asking,” I said, “why are you leaving?”
Was it the rise in crime? Too much noise? Not enough parking? It was none of the above, he explained. “There’s just too much garbage,” he said.
He explained how some of his neighbors put their trash out in open containers and the wind blows it out on to the street and, sometimes, on to his property. So, he sweeps it up and tucks it away with his trash. But then he went away for a few days and when he came back he had a surprise waiting for him: a ticket from the Department of Sanitation for garbage on his sidewalk.
It’s one thing if you’re going to have to live amongst the slobs, it’s another to have them cost you money.
I’m not sure what we, as a community, can do about it. When I was young, they’d file us into the auditorium in P.S. 60 and show us educational films. They’d make us watch these movies with little messages embedded in them to make us better people.
Do we need to treat adults like children? Do we need to teach the slobs amongst us how to throw out garbage? Do we need to shame these slobs publicly? What a disgrace it is if it has to come to that.
If you have any ideas on how we can make Woodhaven a cleaner place to live, don’t keep it to yourself. Come out to our next Town Hall meeting on Friday, September 25, at 7:30 p.m. at Emanuel United Church of Christ on 91st Avenue and Woodhaven Boulevard.
We are inviting all of the candidates for office to come out and tell you why you should vote for them, but we’ll have plenty of time to discuss this and other issues. We hope to see you there.