Government Shutdown Casting A Pall in DC

Sure, the government shutdown has been looming, but it wasn’t until yesterday that it really hit home – as a friend posted on Facebook, no more panda cam!

In reality, my issue is less with cute pandas than pesky racoons that eat trash that’s been left out. I’m obsessed with trash collection. It’s one of the few DC services I utilize, and it’s an essential one, particularly on my narrow little street in the city. So when rumors began to fly that trash collection would halt with the government shutdown … Well, that got me fired up. So far, Mayor Gray says he’s keeping the city operating, but I haven’t seen a trash truck in my neighborhood yet …

In any case, I probably need to start bringing my paper recycling to my office (think: pounds of catalogs for things I would never buy). Let’s be clear, I need to save my recycling space for essentials, i.e., wine and beer bottles.

And drinking is on many people’s minds, it seems, particularly with the beautiful weather we’ve been experiencing. With major sites closed and many workers on furlough, area bars are offering government shutdown happy hour specials. Smart marketing, but I can’t help feeling there’s not that much to be happy about, especially if you aren’t sure when your next paycheck is going to show up. I also feel sorry for the poor tourists who had been planning their big trip to DC, only to be greeted with closed doors – and happy hours.

What to do? Nothing really. Just hope the trash gets picked up, and the crazies come to their senses before my recycling overflows.

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