Letter: Seeking understanding about trash


I’d always assumed piles of trash I habitually pick up at various spots along Rio Chiquito Forest Service road No. 437 were from people partying, as beer cans and broken bottles typically account for much of the mess. Then I recently spent time along the creek at a beautiful spot under the trees and was fortunate enough to meet and talk with three generations of Taoseños doing the same – grandfather, father, and three boys fishing. After they left I was surprised by their fast food trash in the fire pit, the open bag of half-full Cheetos (that my dog found first), their beer and soda cans strewn about, the list goes on. I was more confused than upset while picking up their garbage – I simply didn’t understand. This family was without a doubt good people, not party-goers with no concerns beyond the next drink. Wary of imposing my own values related to wilderness stewardship onto others, I settled into my state of confusion knowing I was missing something. What is the state of mind that leaves all this garbage? Help me understand.

– Mike Murphy, Talpa