Garbology. It’s an academic course of study.

I’m thinking about trash.

Loyal reader Stef doesn’t get my fascination with photographing trash.  I don’t totally understand the attraction to it  myself. But I am thinking about it.  Our family will be dragging out quite a bit of garbage after the holiday.

Litter.  Dumpsters.  Abandoned couches on front lawns, receptacles overflowing onto the sidewalk. We humans create a lot of waste. And the garbage collectors come every week, to my amazement.  I think it’s a hard job.

You can get a degree in garbology and analysis waste (something  like an anthropologist)   a way study cultures- current or ancient.  Anyone collect those Garbage Pail Kids, the trading cards from the mid 80’s?  I think there are still a few around the house in a box somewhere.

I haven’t been photographing much garbage as of late but here’s the dumpster right at the entrance of Heinz FIeld as people are entering the stadium.  Not difficult to analysis and gather information from this collection.   Wonder if someone is going to recycle all the beverage containers.


My mother always said,  “You can tell a lot about someone by their garbage.”    How is your trash?

Heinz field Garbage



19 thoughts on “Garbology

  1. Nothing special about my trash, Ruth, except that there’s nothing with my name in there. A few years ago, we caught someone going through my neighbor’s trash bins looking for financial material. I’ve burned out one shredder since then.

  2. All I can say is that I received a certificate from the city, saying that my trash and recycling are correctly set out for pick up. You can come and photograph the trash scene any Friday morning.

  3. Pingback: Scientific Studies | AngelineM's Blog

    • Angeline- Love your response with a cool photo. I posted on Facebook so people can see the difference. You have some classier trash!!

  4. Oh your comment is grand Patti. I need to dedicate a folder to
    my trash collection
    – of photos that is!
    Did you see Angeline’s California trash?
    NYC has super garbage treasures. You are right. Thanks for the visit and good thoughts today

  5. As a planet it’s overwhelming. It took me a number of years to climb on the recycling bandwagon but now I am vigilant . Think about living on a busy two lane road and then you will see community disconnect.

  6. It’s true that a lot can be learned by studying garbage (of cultures long gone and of people nearby) – but not my preferred area to pursue. (In fact, whenever James Lipton asks the Bernard Pivot questionnaire at the end of Inside The Actor’s Studio, I always answer along; and my response 99% of the time to the question, “What profession would you not like to attempt?” is ‘garbage man’. [Or woman, as the case may be.]

  7. Pingback: Guaranteed Distraction? – Ruth E. Hendricks Photography

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