A little over a month ago, I threw this PHAT (yea, I said phat) housewarming party. Technically it was a housewarming/my good friend Yasi's birthday party. We decided to go all out. We stocked up on chicken and burgers to BBQ, bought 5 huge jugs of liquor, a 48 case of beer and tons of soda. Yasi's husband Patrick DJ'd and people didn't really start going home until 4:30! It was so much fun. I invited my family and some friends, and Yasi invited her friends and family. The house was packed. There were groups of people in both of my family rooms, the kitchen, the front yard and sometimes even in the garage. As the night wore on, I realized how many people were there that I didn't know. In fact, last weekend I went to a bar in Oakland and this guy came up to me and said, "YOU ARE THE ONE WHO THREW THAT AMAZING PARTY!" I didn't even remember seeing him there. It was a damn good time.
And holy cow, did people drink. Luckily, everyone handled themselves very well, but with the amount of people and the length of the party, we blew through so much booze. And people kept bringing alcohol as well, so by the next day, we had a whole ice chest full of beers. We counted 47 bottles undrunk. 1 less than what we started out with.
Today I finally got around the taking all the bottles and cans to the redemption center. Our recycling has been super full from all the boxes from moving, so we didn't have room. Plus, we thought it'd be nice to get the cash back. But this is a task I've been dreading. The pile has slowly grown since the party. One of my good friends was over two nights ago and he said, "So, still no movement on the recycle pile?" Clearly, I had put it off fair too long.
I filled 7 garbage bags of bottles and cans. SEVEN! I thought maybe 2-3, but seven?! The whole process was annoying since I had to separate things. Occasionally a bag would break and old beer would splatter all over me. When I finally managed to get every bag in the car, one of them busted open. Luckily, I covered the whole backseat in towels, but it added to the inconvenience of the whole situation.
Finally, I get to the redemption center an hour after I began the bagging process. The place is packed. People have so many recyclables that I started to feel better about my 7 huge, bulging, busting bags. I dragged a barrel over to my car and started to fill it. 3 full barrels later, I'm trying to figure out how to drag the barrels to the weigh station. As I'm struggling with one, this woman starts driving right up to me (I was in the parking lot) and lays on her horn. She starts motioning to me and waving me to get out of the middle of the road.
I let go of the heavy barrel, push my falling sunglasses back up my nose and look at her. Over the horn I say, "Just go around me, please."
She wouldn't stop honking. It was so loud. So I shouted. "STOP IT!" She did and leaned her head outside of the car and said, "What?" And I said, "That's really loud and annoying. Just go around me." She said, "That guy took my parking spot!" She started honking again. The guy that took her spot walked up near me and started to shout at her. I took that as my cue to move it.
I got my barrels, with the help of some lovely gentleman, to the weigh station. 14lbs of glass, 1.6lbs of plastic and .4 pounds of aluminum. This was my first time at a redemption center. I got really excited about how much that would add up to. I had guessed it'd be around $30. As I was standing in line waiting for my receipt, this guy in the warehouse starts throwing all the glass into this bigger container. The noise was deafening. It hurt my ears so bad. The line was moving so slow, so I had to just suffer through the loudness for minutes. I couldn't cover my ears with my hands because they were so dirty and sticky. "I can't believe there isn't hand sanitizer here," I said to myself, shuddering.
Finally, I get to the window. After a minute or two, he comes back with a receipt and cash. $14.37.
For all that? At this point the process had taken almost 2 hours. That's not even minimum wage. For all the loudness, grossness and messiness, I got just enough to know to never do that again.
As I was driving home, I called my sister's husband to brag about having 14lbs of glass beer bottles because I knew he'd find that to be entertaining. He responded with, "You had that main open containers of booze in your car? You could get into some serious trouble for that." He always helps me to see things in a totally different way.