|America is Entrepreneurship|
There's a couple I see every so often on my walking routes.
Together, they pick up recyclable items.
They each have tricycles and I've noticed they also have a pickup truck.
There are quite a few people I see picking up what can be recycled for cash.
This particular couple are older and they work quite hard, having to load their cycles and the materials as they move about.
When I first noticed them some time ago, they were on foot using baskets on wheels.
Not sure if they had the pickup truck then.
The tricycles are a recent addition, I think.
I guess they park the truck at a central location and make the rounds on the cycles.
It isn't a glamorous job (most jobs aren't), but I guess it makes ends meet.
It is noble and honest work, quite laborious due to the sifting, accumulating and transporting.
But I see them together, and I'm sure they also spend together what they earn together.
Many couples spend most of their waking hours apart, with one or both working somewhere away from the other.
Time apart is healthy, but a life apart when considering all things, I'm not so sure of.
Years ago when I lived with my grandmother and mother, I would gather up the recyclable items and would realize between $20 – $30 dollars for a month's worth of aluminum cans and clear plastic bottles.
I saw it as tightening a leak (not throwing money away / making the most of every opportunity).
The back seat and trunk of the car would be packed full with these items for the short drive to a recycling center.
Most cities in the Los Angeles area pick up the recyclables along with the trash (two different trucks).
When considering the small amount paid for recyclable materials, the city's effort must deal in large volume to make money and pay its employees.
There are many more individuals picking up recyclable material than city employees competing in the same effort.
On an individual level, as with this couple, the gain is very little.
The individual needs to also deal with large volumes to make it worthwhile.
I don't recycle my items anymore, but leave them the day before trash day for whoever is earning an honorable yet difficult living.
I understand the $20 a month I can get back is more appreciated and useful in the hands of such as these.
I wonder if it would be better for all parties if the city wouldn't pick up the recyclable items and instead they were available for those many who wouldn't or couldn't qualify for the few city jobs.