“Aluminum Cans” by chidorian

I might get into a side hustle helping organized crime families dispose of bodies. I have already laid the groundwork (forgive the pun) for the operation.

For about a year now I have been bribing, Doris, the lady at the county dump who runs the giant compactor for yard trash. She positively loves me. I could show up with several bodies in the bed of my truck, haul them out one-by-one, plop them into the compactor, and Doris would mash the compact button without so much as a second glance.

Doris is a reader. I bribe her with books. And get this – the books don’t cost me a dime. I am a customer of a used bookstore that tosses books they can’t sell in a “free” bin. I swing by, grab up a few romance novels and a bribing I do go.

What do I get for my efforts? I can toss just about anything into the yard trash compactor forbidden item or not. Old fencing, for example. Pallets. Kitchen garbage. Dead critters. Cardboard boxes. I don’t have to lug a thing to the household trash compactor or the cardboard recycling bin. I just toss it all in the yard trash compactor and I am on my way in no time snickering evilly under my breath.

So called rural living “experts” on the internet never mention the vital necessity of bribing the county dump people. Maybe they believe your average dump worker is the honest, forthright sort – immune to temptation.

All I have to say to that is “Hah!” They may have started out as good, honorable people but, spending eight hours a day in the merciless heat or frigid cold, the rain, the wind – sleet even; breathing garbage fumes until their nasal passages erode – all for minimum wage; and eventually even the most Christian among us turns to the dark side. And evil imp that I am, I am right there waiting to temp them.

I learned all about bribing the county dump people years ago when a manager of a dump spotted me carrying a bag-full of aluminum cans to the aluminum recycling bin.

“Hey, you!” he says to me in a voice not to be ignored. I stop in my tracks, wondering what in the world I could possibly be doing wrong. “What’re you doing with them cans?”

“I was going to put them in there,” I told him pointing at the aluminum can recycling bin a few yards away.

“You know,” he tells me, and now he’s grinning. “If them cans fell on the ground there and got flattened, not a soul would care. Of course, I’d have to swing by sooner or later, pick them up.”

We just stared at each other as the wheels of cognition ground away in my head. Old and in need of oiling though my wheels may be, they still came up with the right conclusion.

I dumped the cans out of the bag and stomped away.

His smile widened a few millimeters then he walked off. Nothing else was said.

Next time I showed up, I had parts of a deer I was going to throw way. He waved me to a stop and walked over.

“Can’t drop off deer at the dump,” he tells me.

“Watch your step,” I told him. “I am about to accidently drop a bunch of flattened beer cans on the ground right here.”

“I’ll take care of them,” he told me and walked off.

I was given the proverbial keys to the proverbial dump kingdom. Rules no longer applied to me. I dumped all sorts of forbidden things in the yard waste bin. For the right amount of cans, nothing was off limits.

“What’s that in the back of your truck?” the manger asks as I pull up.

“Radioactive uranium,” I tell him.

“You mean the stuff they use to make atomic bombs and such?”

“Yep. Enough to kill half the county Dang! That’s the third bag of flattened beer cans to fall out of my truck since I got here.”

“I’ll pick them up,” he tells me. “Okay, “Go ahead.”

The lady who reads the books was sort of an accidental discovery. I was throwing away a bunch of books and she stopped me.

“You don’t want them books?”


“Set that bag by me.”

“I’ll bring you more next time I run across a few.”

We lock eyes for a moment. Wheels turn.

“What’s that you got wrapped up in those black trash bags?” she asks me, pulling a Romance novel out of the bag and looking it over.

“Well, it certainly isn’t Lougee “Louie Bananas” Pizzuti the mafia crime boss who went missing last night.

“Dump it in,” she tells me.

She mashes the button.