Daily Archives: November 13, 2021

The Silent Bin Night

Look it’s late, I’m up, I can’t sleep because I made a stupid mistake of listening to the Cat Empire song Miserere too close to bedtime, don’t fucking at me.


It is also bin night.

For those not familiar, here in Australia, we have weekly and biweekly pickup of our garbage, which we keep outside the house in bins that have wheels on them for easy arrangement at the kerbside. The garbage trucks typically come by a reasonably early hour in the morning, which means if you want to make sure your trash is collected, you get it out on the kerb the night before.

I live in a block of houses that share a driveway, and that has certain rules. One of them is to keep the noise down after a certain time of night.


This is a problem.

The problem isn’t the requirement, it’s very reasonable. The problem is that this semester, that bin night has fallen on my latest work day. So I will get my work done, finish work, make dinner, then clean up after dinner and recover and have a little breather and oh woops it’s after the time to make noise. And that can be a problem if you’re trying to put things into the bin.

For kitchen waste, with soft garbage that goes into a plastic bag, then that plastic bag goes into the garbage bin, it’s easy. Just lower it in. But for recycling it’s a lot trickier, with a recycling bin that is both larger to encourage its use. It being larger means that it’s harder to put things in it and have them reach the bottom and they make a big echoey noise as things land in it. Plus, recycling is the bulk of our waste, so we want to make sure we don’t miss a recycling night (they’re biweekly instead of weekly).

Tonight, I didn’t put the bins out on time.

What followed is that when I realised the problem, I had two options. One, I give up, accept that it was going to be a rough week without room in the recycling bin, or I find a way to do it quietly. And like a big idiot, I did exactly that.

This involved carrying the bins – which are wheeled – a few steps at a time – to a location away from the houses, so that they didn’t make noise as I wheeled them over the driveway work. This also involved then walking all the recycling I have out that far as well, to place it in the bin, out by the street. This was also done at night, in the cold and quiet, while holding my breath to make sure I didn’t make excessive noise.

There’s no spoiler or important point here, I just thought ‘oh, hey, that would work, wouldn’t it?’ and then I tried it and it worked? And that’s kind of okay?