I’m going with Idiotic. Apparently there are a group of folks who call themselves Freegans and they go rifling around through trash at night for free stuff. Immediately I hear Arrested Development’s song “Mr. Windle” but in that case Mr. Windle, we’re told, was a bum. These folks are not. I’m just like any other bargain shopper, especially since my clothing discount no longer exists. If I had a car I’d travel around the UWS and UES for an amazing mirror or dresser. I walked through SoHo and to my apartment in BedStuy 5 years ago with a giant poster on poster board that was taller than me and wider than my armspan. I’m all about a good deal but food?
Yes, Food. As you know I work for a grocer here in NYC and the Freegans are out every night picking from our trash to find anything from wilted flowers (totally get that) to meat and cheese (no!!) If it were winter in New York and the trash frozen over I might understand but it’s 90 degrees at midnight and the food that we dispose only goes on the street after hours, which means it’s been sitting in the trash, inside, warm all day just for these people to pick it out and take it home to eat or feed family and friends?
I’m not trying to pass judgement, although I very clearly am but it’s not coming from an entitled place but a place of sincere concern. I mean, you would purchase expired cheese, meat, milk, or eggs so surely fishing it from the trash isn’t an ideal situation. Yet, every night as I leave the store exhausted and tired the same group of people, in cars or on bikes, are there opening up the giant black trash bags, digging around until they produce anything from a carton of eggs to peaches. Any thoughts, readers? Would you be a freegan?