I was waiting in line at a drive-thru Starbucks here in Redmond just now, as the third car in line. The occupants of a black pickup at the head of the line seemed to be taking an incredibly long time to get their drink. Then from the truck’s passenger side, I saw a giant fast-food paper cup come hurtling out into the little light shrubbery beside the car. It landed quite visibly and I stared at it in shock till the pickup received its beverage — a giant disgusting frozen syrupy something or other — and drove off. The driver and her passenger were both women.
Why was I shocked?
I’m not as hardcore on this as Michael Medved
who actually gets out of his car and picks up other people’s litter when he sees it. Usually I don’t notice litter at all. But it was the boldness of the tossed cup that amazed me. There were two cars behind the pickup and maybe the Starbucks cashier as witnesses. It was broad daylight. I understand when people do something wrong when they think nobody’s watching. But to hurl garbage out of your car, in a perfectly nice, tidy business neighborhood in Redmond, Washington, indicated a total lack of shame. And it was a woman doing this!
It’s not the piece of garbage that disturbed me but the shamelessness of it. It struck me as a snapshot of how a civilization crumbles. Or am I overreacting?