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SayUncle v. Engineering And Public Works

A couple years back, we had a tree fall. It fell and split one of my fence posts in two pieces and took out two sections of the fence. I managed to salvage the two sections but the post (originally 6 feet long, and 6×6 inches) was DRT. One of the two broken pieces was about 4 feet long. So, I did what anyone would do. I put them in the trash. Now, in The City (My The City), as part of your property taxes, they do weekly trash pickup. I came home and noticed they had emptied the trash but tossed these two half posts in my front yard. So, I put them back in the trash can and figured I’d try again.

I did that four or five times. Come home on trash day, see posts thrown in my yard, put back in trash can. Repeat.

Finally, I took the two posts and tossed them in the street. And the city picked them up the next day. Lesson learned.

So, at it again. Our property backs up to a creek, which we have discovered is a wetland or something. When we moved in, we had the idea to put a small pump in it and use the water for a sprinkler system. Hired a contractor and everything. After we realized that we had to fill out forms, get approval from state and fed agencies, do detailed plans, take photos, blah blah, we realized something. We should have just done it ourselves. But we didn’t since I figured I had alerted the authorities to my sinister plans.

Anyway, part of the creek that we do not own has always had an old tire in it that looked pretty buried. The other day, The Mrs. decided to try to pull the tire out. And, lo and behold, it came out. So, she put the tire in the trash. I come home yesterday, and those diligent folks at Engineering And Public Works have tossed it in my yard.

I’m going to go throw it back in the creek.

36 Responses to “SayUncle v. Engineering And Public Works”

  1. Nylarthotep Says:

    Throw it in the street.

    It would be more satisfying to drive it to town hall and drop it in the middle of the front stairs, but I bet the police may object in an unpleasant way.

  2. Ben Says:

    My city is the same way… I love the throw it in the street solution. All this does is increase dumping.

  3. DirtCrashr Says:

    Throw it back in the creek but first put a hole in it and stick a hose in the hole that goes to your sump-pump, with a screen cage over it for debris, and bury the hose line. Then re-bury it in the creek. Camouflage.

  4. Jailer Says:

    I like the way you think.

  5. Steve Says:

    Even though that tire came from the creek, it’s probably a federal felony to put it back. Just throw it in the street.

  6. ErnestM Says:

    One of the best (and funniest) things I have read all day. Nice.

  7. Mr Evilwrench Says:

    Illegal here in IN to throw a tire in the trash, but my trash is retrieved by the trashbot. It comes and picks up the bin with the hinged lid, lifts it and dumps it in a hole in the top of the truck. Nobody looks at what’s in it, so, um, they’ve had a couple of tires over the years.

  8. David, Chandler, AZ Says:

    Wow. Six paragraphs??

    I had expected you to say you threw it in the street. Seems like the best idea to me. 🙂

  9. Reloader Says:


  10. Jay G. Says:

    Not quite reloader.

    Put a sign on it that says “Tire for Sale: $5” and leave it unlocked.

    Guaranteed someone will steal it within the hour.

  11. aeronathan Says:

    Glad our trash policy is that if it fits in the can, they’ll pick it up…

  12. aeronathan Says:

    Incidentally, that policy plus a reciprocating saw makes disposing of our Christmas tree easy…

  13. Noah D Says:

    What, nobody makes redneck planters out of old tires anymore?

  14. Rabbit Says:

    My dad was a builder. Way back when ‘all electric’ homes were the Next Big Thing, he built the first one in Our Fair Town. Didn’t use natural gas for furnace heating or cooking, although the subdivision (which he planned and developed) had natural gas service at the curbside.

    The City inspector (there was one, who did it part time- he was the water department supervisor) wouldn’t give him a certificate of occupancy, as there wasn’t a completed inspection for the gas lines. Of course, it didn’t matter that there was no gas service, all electric, but that’s heresy!

    Parade of Homes was coming up. Still no Certificate, homeowner wanted to take possession, house was to be open for the Parade, everyone at loggerheads.

    The homeowner was an avid fisherman. He stopped by Dad’s office to show him his latest catch and inquire on progress. Dad had one of his frequent flashes of inspiration- he had some peach bushels from a recent trip to a local orchard, so he lined one with newspaper, dumped a bunch of fish heads and guts in it, covered it with more newspaper and a layer of fresh, ripe, succulent peaches and drove to City Hall. It was late on a Friday afternoon before the Memorial Day long weekend and everyone had left early, but as the police station was in the same building, they gladly let him into the inspector’s office and were rewarded with a couple of peaches for their trouble, while Dad left the basket on the inspector’s desk and relocked the door behind him.

    He had a phone call Tuesday morning, and the certificate was signed off and delivered before noon.

    Things were simpler in the 60’s; if this had happened today, he’d be up on charges of bioterror.

  15. Shootin' Buddy Says:

    Doesn’t the city, your city, have like “Operation Clean Sweep” or the like where they have a big dumpster full of tires? The city here, my city, just had one where they collect old tires and appliance and what not.

    So, I drove the truck, my truck, around the neighborhood, my neighborhood, and collected old tires.

  16. Phelps Says:

    Find a red light camera to hang it around, if you know what I mean and I think you do.

  17. kuhnzoo Says:

    Now you why some rules are meant to be broken….

  18. MJM Says:

    I’d laugh, but it drives you up a wall at the same time. Law of unintended consequences: This is construction materials, old tires, mattresses and other stuff the city won’t pick up, get dumped by people along roadsides, at someone else’s property, and in old cemeteries.

  19. karrde Says:

    That’s odd.

    I’ve seen a ‘tire recycling’ location in my area, but I never figured out if they offer money for the tires, or simply accept them for free.

    But it’s more work than leaving them out for the trash.

  20. Ted N(not the Nuge) Says:

    Did anybody else have Charlie Chaplin-ish music running in their head when they were reading that?

  21. Bert Says:


    All this is so funny.

    Apply for a burn permit for the tire…

    When you are turned down, elevate it to the city manager. Insist on a burn permit, but grudgingly take pickup as a alternate solution. Be sure and use as many of the administrations useless hours as possible.

    On the sump pump, be sure to avoid sucking up spring lizards and snail darters. They jam the pump.


  22. Lyle Says:

    This story is right out of the old Soviet Union, except that you haven’t been killed yet, for writing about it.

  23. TennGoodBoy Says:

    Sort of related story:

    Few years ago a guy who owned a tire was ordered by the city to get rid of his growing pile of used tires, but he couldnt find a place to take them.

    You know those self storage places confiscate your stuff if you get behind in the rent? Well, he rented a unit, paid the first month’s rent, filled it up with used tires, then didnt pay any more.

    A dirty trick I know, but I admire his abilily to solve the problem while working within the rules…

  24. Vote For David Says:

    If you put it in the street, that is littering.
    If they put it in your yard, is it not littering?
    Call the Police and report the littering, and have them take the tire as evidence!

  25. mikee Says:

    If you think your simple wooden post and tire issues were fun, try throwing away a rusted-out trash can sometime.

  26. mikee Says:

    And my city, yes my city, here in Texas has a recycling center that accepts old paint cans and solvents. They are open for drop off of such toxic waste from 3 to 4 pm the first Wednesday of each month. Supposedly open, that is. I would not know, as their one hour drop off period per month falls within what most folks call “working hours.”

    They don’t get much in the way of business, but their recycling webpage strongly advertises their “service” in taking old paint. Which you are not allowed to toss in the trash.

    I think this is what those heavy duty black plastic contractor cleanup bags are made for: to contain the non-disposable items long enough to get them into the garbage truck unseen.

  27. Strela Says:

    you could just drop it off at some local tire store you drive by after hours. leave it on their doorstep, they will add it to their pile that gets hauled off, noone will care. Tires are fairly inert and don’t really pollute when thrown in the pond but are pretty ugly. And the garbage haulers (likely union-but not city employees, most cities hire a private firm) are probably either legally or contractually bound not to take tires. (the fence post was bullshit though-it ain’t construction debris if it aint a construction site)

  28. Thirdpower Says:

    Mail it to me. I use tires as part of my range backdrop.

  29. SPQR Says:

    Strela, tire stores get charged per tire disposed these days.

  30. Sendarius Says:


    We had a range forcibly closed here because the backstop contained tyres/tires.

    Even though they were covered by dirt, the nanny-bots were terrified: “Rubber makes things bouncy. Bullets will bounce off,and kill you.”

    Funny, but closing the range didn’t do a lot for shooters either. I figured they WANTED to kill the shooting sports.

  31. Beaumont Says:

    Find the house of your local government Garbage Czar, & throw it in his yard.

  32. tkdkerry Says:

    @23 TennGoodBoy –

    Went to a storage unit auction this spring that had one unit full of tires. Never thought it might have been someone pulling the trick you described.

  33. mack Says:

    The story about the city garbage and engineering (fence post and tire)cracked me up. Glad to see it hjappens to others and in other towns not just mine.

  34. Will Says:

    @#7 Mr Evilwrench: I have noticed the trucks in my area now have cameras positioned to see/record what is falling out of the bin being emptied. The driver is looking at a screen, so he can document where the offending item(s) originated.

    For the water pickup: Use a Wellpoint to protect the input. Dig a hole in the bottom bigger than the wellpoint, then backfill with sand/gravel. Bury the piping along the bottom, and through the bank until it gets far enough away from the water that it won’t be visible/obvious to an inspector. Regular plastic type water pipe will work well for this application. Hose, not so much. As it ages, a hose can release some chemical components. You only want to do this once.

    Nowadays, you never want to bring yourself to the attention of any regulatory group. That’s just asking for trouble. No, that’s BEGGING for it.

  35. Chris Says:

    Honestly the biggest reasons I don’t buy land in my state are the rules, regulations, fees (bribes), and hassles of getting permission to build something somewhere you allegedly own. It’s just not worth it.

  36. Robert17 Says:

    I live on a city block, but with a creek nearby with lots of critters. Skunk got squished out front one Friday night. Trash collection is Monday. Didn’t wanna get my shovel all stinky so I called the city animal control. Closed for the weekend. Called City Services. She said to put it in a garbage bag in my garage till Monday. I told her I’d put it in a garbage bag in her garage till Monday. City came by within a couple of hours.

Remember, I do this to entertain me, not you.

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