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Another Poop Sheet


Georgetown, Texas

I've gotten into exotic dumping.

Let me explain.

Right now I'm camped out in the driveway of my empty house. It's for sale. I'm pretty comfortable. As a campsite it ain't bad, in the shade of the big elms, with the birds waking me up in the morning. There's 30A power, a laundry, and a shower just steps away. I'm getting a lot of reading done.

Of course there's the dark side. The neighbors probably think I'm weird, which is really nothing new. A family of squirrels use the top of the trailer for a racetrack.

I still have to mow the yard.

And every week or so, I have to hook up and drag myself to the COE camp outside of town, to dump my tanks. It takes a couple of hours. Four bucks. What a pain. I've been in the driveway for 6 months. After 2, I was looking around for a better place to dump.

I've heard that success is based on sweat and hard work. Au Contraire, mon ami. Laziness is the real generator of progress and innovation.

Of course we all learn to celebrate the gifts that are native to us.

The sewer cutout plug on the house is inaccessible to the trailer. I could get a macerator, but those things are not only expensive, but require a lot of water to pump the effluent through fifty feet of hose. On the road they'd be useless.

Those little blue tanks on wheels are a possibility, but they're bulky and goofy looking, and where would I store it?

While I was walking around the block one day, chewing over the possibilities, I began to notice all the big circular iron plates marked "Sewer". Hmmmm. One almost every block. There's two kinds, "Storm Sewer" and "Sanitary Sewer". Better stick with the latter. Duh. How hard would it be to pry up one of those things?

They're about 2 feet across, and heavy cast iron. I tried to get one up with a large screwdriver, and almost lost a finger to Science. So then I went down to Lowe's, and found a 3 foot "wrecking bar". Perfect. The lid came up easily, and I dragged it aside. Maybe 10 feet down there in the darkness I heard running water.

Whew! No doubt about it, I'm in the right place.

Once you become aware of them, these dumps du jour are everywhere. Even eliminating the ones that are in someone's yard, or in places where you'd have to block traffic to line up the trailer, there's plenty of them accessible. I found three likely sites within a 6 or 7 block radius. One is at the edge of the street, in the gutter really, at the property line between two houses. Another in the no man's land at the front of a subdivision. And another in a similar place at the front of a large apartment complex.

So, for the last month, it has taken me right at 30 minutes to dump, from the time I decide to do it till the time I'm parked again at the house, trailer leveled, antenna extended, and my lazy butt safely back on the couch.

I dunno if this is legal. There's nothing that's not illegal somewhere, including motherhood. Maybe even apple pie. But for me, dumping sewage into the sewer passes the ...ah... sniff test.

Would I do it on the road? In a strange town? Could be, in the absence of a proper dump. It only takes minutes, and harms no one. Maybe I would. But you'll never know about it.

And it sure beats the blue tanks.


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