A Brief Dumpster Diver Page

Email: sixmhz@yahoo.com

Link to my Homepage.

How did it happen?

It all started back in Iowa while working at the Mid-Eastern Council on Chemical Abuse (MECCA). It was a great place to get in cahoots with the local homeless population, all of whom are very iNteresting people. I often wondered what it would be like to not have a single responsibility other than keeping myself alive. I'm not saying these people don't have a lot on their minds, it's just a totally different way of life than the traditional materialistic way of most americans. Anyways, back to topic subject: talking with the local street-dwellers, i heard many stories of scrounging through trash for various items including textbooks. Being a university student at the time, I knew well of the serious value $$ of textbooks. So after a few discussions with my good friend Hu-Ha, he and I decided take our first dumpster diving adventure in search of text-books to sell back to the money-hungry university book store.

So first we started off on campus, including the dorms. we quickly made use of a stick and other poking objects to stir around in the dumpster without really committing ourselves to the full sport of dumpster diving. We were dumpster browsing, looking around on top and a bit of poking. Eventually after several more outings we became bolder and less worried about ??? and we began to become very thorough divers. In the peak of our dumpster diving rampages we tore open every bag, opened every box, folder and container. We read mail, cards and the occasional diary. We could commonly be seen sporting dumpster fashion as we went along.

But..is it Legal?

If someone were to ask that very question I would respond simply with "who cares" because I certainly do not. If I were to be arrested for such a crime I would give a woo-hoo double monkey dance and make another web-page about it. But for those of you who might care, check you local laws and regulations because I don't know them.

You wouldn't possibly believe

You couldn't guess what some people just throw away! I have a "dumpster wish list" for when I go diving because I will ALWAYS find it. Sometimes it takes a while, but eventually somebody will throw away exactly what you are looking for (if you don't mind it being used of course). Half the crap in my apartment came from the trash. My clothes, shoes, food, toilet paper, tv, light bulbs, watch, fishing pole-you name it.

Here's a list of some of the particularly cool loads I've seen get pulled from the Dumper:

things I've not found yet...

Discouraging occurrences

So now with the "bad" part about dumpster diving. This is the list i've come up for discouraging occurrences commonly experienced while digging around:

1. Getting sticky rice all over your clothes and then all over your car seats
2. Coffee grounds dripping with coffee juice all over your hands
3. Fellow dumpster diver sticking a (unused) maxi-pad to your back
4. Tearing open a nice big bag of baby diapers
5. Tearing open a bag of kitty litter and spraying it all over the treasurous trash
6. Being squirted or sprayed with putrid perfume or mustard or any other thing that you would rather not smell like.
7. An unfriendly run-in with the tenants or the law.
8. While standing in the dumpster, feeling some part of your body getting wet by something....
9. Hauling something home and finding out that it really is broken

Some photos of the 2003 dumpster dive team in action

D, L, K, GREG, Hu-Ha
K, K, M-J
M-J, K
K, Hu-Ha
Hu-Ha, G, M-J
GREG delivering a baby TV
U, K, M-J, GREG, K2

Last updated: 05/23/04
Copyright 2002-2004, Greg Miller