Urbandumpsterdiver's Blog

September 29, 2009

Monday Night Madness

Filed under: Uncategorized — urbandumpsterdiver @ 1:05 am

1 IPOD docker car charger, shower gel, child’s halloween costume and wig (I gave that away immediately), toothbrushes, 1 panini sandwich maker (new), 1 bucket of bleach, scented pine cones, 1 pair of shoes and pastry brush.

The child’s costume was still in the bag. Not a drop of dirt on it. Will be good for some young girl for a Halloween costume this year. The wig was still in the container as well.

I’ve been diving now almost a year. I’ve probably recovered at least 5K in merchandise thrown in the dumpsters. Since I have a nightly route, I sometimes see the same security guards, janitors and homeless people out at night. Sometimes I just wave or sometimes we have a conversation. Some of these people are more authentic and decent than some of the so called white-collar professionals I used to work with. They’re our working poor. Too proud to take a handout. Hard to find nowadays with the entitlement mentality so pervasive in our society.

We are such a wasteful society. It’s really a sin. I live in such a beautiful beach area and yet the amount of litter is appalling. Why oh why anyone would deliberately want to litter in this country is beyond me. When I drive on the freeways here, the amount of litter on the sides is just mind boggling. Especially the cigarette butts thrown out. Washed into the sewage system, into our beaches, our groundwater. If you litter, please stop.

September 26, 2009

Saturday Night Finds

Filed under: Uncategorized — urbandumpsterdiver @ 11:34 pm

5 pair of reading glasses and one computer jack for phone use. Something told me to look in the bag of trash and I’m glad I did. Those reading glasses will benefit someone who right now cannot afford prescription lenses.

I’m finding that some of the stores are throwing stuff in a bag and sealing it rather than dumping it into the dumpster. Much better for me. If I see or think the bag is full of products and items tossed, I throw the bag in my car and sort it out when I get home. I make sure the bag is dry trash, wet trash could be hazardous.

I’ve got so many things for children that when toys for tots come around this year, I have things to donate. Mind you anything I find is brand new. If a bottle of vitamins or pills or anything has been opened or tampered, I don’t take it. It’s simply not worth the risk.

There are couple of malls in my area that are dead space due to the economy. I will be checking their dumpsters soon.

Wild Friday Night

Filed under: Uncategorized — urbandumpsterdiver @ 12:15 am

1 chair mat (plastic). Great for my chair at my computer.

13 cans of Sugar Free Energy Drink, 5 bottles of Gatorade, 1 bottle of Arizona Iced Tea, 2 bags of maxi pads, 1 bag of adult bladder pads, 1 box of saltines, 1 bottle of ICY Hot, 1 child’s toy.

Except for the adult like diapers and the child’s toy, everything else I can use.

I’m grateful for everything I find. I really am. It makes a huge difference to my bottom line and my personal economy. Thank you God.

September 24, 2009

Wednesday Night Finds

Filed under: Uncategorized — urbandumpsterdiver @ 12:51 am

1 MP3 Speaker, 1 landline phone, Name Brand Diet Pills, Crackers, shaving cream, perfume spray.

Funny thing is that I’ve been looking for an MP3 speaker for a while, haven’t gotten around to buying one yet. Now I don’t have to. Perfectly good one throw in trash. I added a new store to my route that I had overlooked. The good thing about this store is that they throw all the good stuff in one bag so there is no digging in the dumpster. Works for me.

A lot of the stores in my area have been slashing prices for a while now. There are some good bargains out now if you have the money. I’ve found some great clearance items that I can use for a while now.

Got a new job, but now there is talk it won’t last long. I’m bummed. I’m going to have a garage sale and sell some of the stuff I’ve found (the new stuff) for a decent price.  Almost every one I know is affected by this economy. It’s very hard to not let it get you down. My neighbor for the first time in his life was let go last week. I spent about an hour helping him with his unemployment paperwork and how to fill out claim forms in the future.

I have my personal reasons why the economy is failing, but that’s not the purpose of this blog. This blog is a diary of my dumpster diving, how it’s affected me and what I see on the streets. Sometimes not a pretty sight.

September 19, 2009

New Foot Stool

Filed under: Uncategorized — urbandumpsterdiver @ 11:46 pm

Recovered a brand new IKEA foot stool out of the bins on my route. It had a cover with it, but because of bed bugs and other varmints that meander around the dumpster, I left it there. I do have cushions at home (I sew quite a bit). So now the one chair I have in my living room is now a Lazy Boy type of recliner.

So after I make this post I will sit and watch a movie with my Margarita with my tired feet propped up on my new footstool.

Recovered Bicycle

Filed under: Uncategorized — urbandumpsterdiver @ 3:39 pm

Found a basically brand new street cruiser bicycle in my trash bin today. It was too new for someone to throw away. I can almost guarantee you it was stolen and someone threw it in the trash as they were afraid of getting caught.

My clue was that the front tire had ran almost out of air. Other than that, the bike was in good shape, almost new. That’s why I knew it was stolen. Whomever stole it didn’t want to deal with airing up the tire, so they dumped it, probably in a hurry.

I called my local police department and they came and picked the bike up. As soon as I saw it, I knew some young teenage kid had gotten his or her bike stolen – it was too new. The officer said that after 90 days I could have it if someone didn’t claim it. I told the lady officer nope, if the rightful owner doesn’t materialize let some young teenage kid have it.

Maybe some young teenager can use that bike to go to school or something else.

I now hope the bike went to it’s rightful owner.

September 17, 2009

Pasta from Rescued Tomato Plant

Filed under: Uncategorized — urbandumpsterdiver @ 8:59 pm

Today I made fresh tomato sauce from fresh tomatoes. I rescued a small tomato plant that was due for the trash bin.

With much tender loving care, pruning and watering, this little tomato plant will continue to yield a good harvest.

I had fresh tomato sauce which included grated fresh vine ripe tomatoes, garlic, onions and olive oil. It was delightful.

Processed foods are so bad for us. They’re full of salt, additives and preservatives. 

Since I’m a frugal minded person, I will continue to post things that are relative to dumpster divers like myself.

Fresh sauce vs. canned sauce – the difference is amazing.

September 15, 2009

Encounter with the homeless

Filed under: Uncategorized — urbandumpsterdiver @ 1:22 am

20 loaves of bread, 3 hair bands, 1 bottle of pore clearing pads, 2 pair of panty hose, 1 bag of tortellini, 1 listermint breath spray, 1 bag of maxi pads, infants gas relief, 1 milkshake maker, 1 home fan, 30 bottles of water, pool goggles, water purifier for the faucet, 2 bottles of lotion.

I had a helluva time getting the water out of the dumpster. I saw a young man walking near me. I noticed he was carrying a guitar and a knapsack. I assumed he was homeless. He could see I was struggling with the water. He jumped into the dumpster and grabbed more stuff for me and helped me carry it to my truck.

I came back and he was digging through the trash. I gave him bread and other food I found. I said are you homeless son? He said yes I am. My heart just sank. He was young.

I walked to my car to give him some money for dinner. All I had on me was $3. I gave it to him. I said son, go buy yourself some dinner, even if it’s at Jack in the Box. He looked downcast, took the money and say thank you ma’am. That was awful nice of you, I’m going to get myself something to eat now.

I’ve been thinking about this all night. God bless that young man.

On a political note here, it makes me insane that our elected officials can afford to send money overseas to countries who don’t even like us, corporate welfare, bailing out corrupt banks and young men like this are homeless.

It doesn’t make sense and it really makes me angry.

I’m glad I was able to help this young man tonight in my own little way.

September 10, 2009

Wednesday 9.09.09

Filed under: Uncategorized — urbandumpsterdiver @ 12:04 am

Found a wonderful tall tomato plant, entrenched in one of those cone shaped wire holders. Just needs a little TLC, had plenty of young budding tomatoes on it. I love homegrown tomatoes. That’s the essence of organic gardening, growing food at home.

Other finds, 1 full of ream of paper (a few pages were damaged so they threw them away), a package of paint brushes, and one package of scrub brushes (great for cleaning the bathroom).

It’s amazing what is thrown away. That’s OK, whatever I find I can use. It certainly helps my personal economy and the environment (that stuff not being throw in the landfill).

September 7, 2009

Happy Labor Day

Filed under: Uncategorized — urbandumpsterdiver @ 11:15 pm

Labor day to some is depressing, especially those without jobs. I feel their pain. I’m starting a new job in 2 weeks and there is no way of knowing how long this job will last. I’ll just wait and see.

Spent the day with friends eating steak, potato salad and cheesecake. What a good meal. A good meal made by a good friend. Watched the movie Hangover. A laugh out loud crying your eyes out movie. I so needed the laugh.

After I left I went on my route. Found some bottled water still intact, that helps. I can use that for sure.

For those of you who are still looking for work and are hurting financially, I feel your pain. Cutting costs does not mean you cannot have fun.

If there is a good movie I want to see, I want until it comes to my local library and I rent it for free or $1 if it’s a new movie. I buy most of my produce from local produce stores which are actually cheaper than the larger chains. I go to the beach a lot. Sometimes in the winter I take a chair with a blanket and read a book. The negative ions of the ocean really help calm the mind.

If I really want a book I wait until Borders has a 40% coupon and then buy it. I usually give the book away to someone who needs it or I donate it to the library. I always find that if I give stuff away, it always returns to me tenfold.

Job seekers – get involved in a charity or a cause. Employers can smell it if you’re desperate for a job and that desperation erodes your confidence. Sometimes you have to back off job searching (if you can) and just breathe.

Who knows that chairperson at your local charity or political group just may be the HR manager or supervisor in a company who may need someone like you. I think the days of blindly sending out unsolicited emails are over. You really do have to know someone and you have to continue those friendships ad infinitum.

This economy has forced people out of the malls. It’s forced some of us to step away from the computer, make eye contact with your neighbors and network. To me it’s the only way to a sustainable society.

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