DOUG: One nice thing about the snow - it hides everything. The dogs do their thing in the yard and it disappears. We take our walk in the morning and there is very little litter to collect. Then it warms up. And it rains. And all of that stuff that had vanished suddenly reappears.
My day began in the yard with a trowel. I got most of it, but I am sure I miss some. Then after carrying our poor blind invalid pup out to the yard one last time, I hop in my truck to head for work. I see block after block of litter on the curbs and sidewalks. I park at the laundromat, put on my gloves, grab my bag, and get to work. In about fifteen minutes you wouldn't recognize the place.
Back in the truck, I make a right turn at Main Street. Oh boy. What happened to that guy with the street sweeper machine? This place is a mess. They typically run the street cleaner early on a Monday morning and today is Friday. I park, put on the gloves, grab my bag, and get to work. Then I see a guy on the sidewalk. He walks up the street a short distance, turns around and walks back. I notice right away that he is NOT smoking. This is cool. Too often people with time to kill are smoking. I walk right up to him. "Hey," I said, "I just noticed something!" He looks back at me - puzzled. "You're not smoking. That's cool." Then I see the cigarette pack in his shirt pocket. That's my cue. "I have to tell you about my tongue." He looks me in the eye and listens intently. I tell him the part about having the leech sewn onto my tongue.He says, "No way!"
I finish my story and ask if he has thought about quitting. He says he has quit before - for a while. Then he started again. "That's good. You already know how to quit." I explained that if he stops smoking he will probably get to keep his tongue. He promises to work on this. He asks if I can spare a buck. I give him two. What can you buy with one dollar?
I move on down the street and the eyesore just gets worse.
I park next to Brix, grab my bag, and get back to work.
Along comes my friend Dale.
I have known him for 25 years - since he was 18.
We have a little game we play.
If he guesses how much money I have hidden in my fist, he gets to keep it. It's always two dollars. Dale always wins. Dale does not smoke. He sets a good example for the others.
I arrive late to work. But my pathway to work is a little bit cleaner.