Lynn And James’ Roadside Adventure

An alert “06880” reader who asked to be identified only as Andy writes:

Many folks in Westport do their best to help keep our town great. Here’s a story about 2 of them.

My weekend bike route takes me down Saugatuck Avenue, and ends at the Cedar Point Yacht Club. On the 1st  weekend of the month, I usually ride by Lynn and James picking up roadside trash. They’re easy to spot, with a purpose-made trash grabber in one hand and a large plastic bag in the other. James used to fill up plastic grocery bags. But they were outlawed, so he now uses regular garbage bags.

James and Lynn, hard at work.

James and Lynn, hard at work.

Their “trash pick-up route” is about 1 1/2 miles long — 3 miles round trip. The 2-hour gig begins on Saugatuck Avenue (New Haven side of the train station), and goes up Duck Pond Road onto Harbor Drive. Lynn and James cover both sides of the road.

The roadside trash usually fills 4 large plastic bags. In order of frequency: cigarette butts, cigarette boxes, drink cup lids and fast food packaging.

These 2 fine folks preferred I not use their last names in the article. But if you pass them on the road one weekend day, feel free to slow down and salute these terrific neighbors of ours.


11 responses to “Lynn And James’ Roadside Adventure

  1. Thank you.
    I hope your concern and thoughtfulness will grow like the icebucket challenge.

  2. Nancy W Hunter

    Yikes! Four large bags of garbage? That’s really a shame.
    Kudos to these two for their community spirit, though. Too bad that this should be a reason for walking. (They should wear santa hats through December while doing this job, as a friend of mine does — it’s an interesting site!)

  3. This is such an amazing, heartwarming, and adorable story (Lynn especially looks quite happy and excited)!

    So, some people may park like jerks, some people may cut down trees when flipping houses (and others may complain about said trees that don’t belong to them), and some people may call Compo a “park” rather than a “beach”, but thank you for highlighting this pair, as I think we can all agree that people like Lynn and James are what makes Westport truly special.

  4. Nancy W Hunter

    … and too many people litter, it seems.

  5. Sharon Pauslen

    I think I’ve seen these two in action awhile back. Have they been doing this a long time?
    I’ve noticed that a day or so after trash and recycling pickups occur, the roads can get a bit more littered. I think some items, especially light recycling plastics, tend to blow out of the trucks or blue bins on the curbs (at least up here in Trumbull). Doesn’t take much to noticeably affect the landscape, aye?
    Remember what is was like before bottle deposits and recycling programs? Beer and soda cans (and pull tabs!) all along the roadways. I’m recalling that this was bad in the 1970’s.

  6. Nancy W Hunter

    Bad then. Still bad now. Why is that?
    Why does it cross anyone’s mind to throw anything out the car window, or beside a bus stop or into a creek?
    Recycling has nothing to do with this mentality.

    The makeup of the garbage: fast food containers, beer and pop cans, cigarette butts is none of my business (that’s another conversation),
    but littering is everyone’s business.

  7. Sharon Paulsen

    And remember that “please don’t litter” ad from the 70’s (or early 80’s?) with the Native American Indian character, crying at the end? Things were way worse back then in terms of blatant “chuck it out the window” mentality. We’ve made good progress since then, but yeah, it could be even better still. Consumptionism (like “fast food” container-ism) is still a serious problem. The production of all that styro is enough to make one puke when you really think about it’s impact on our planet.
    But, it feels good to focus on this one couple … Enacting one good deed, one good walk at a time.

    • Nancy W Hunter

      Very well said, Sharon.
      p.s. remember making bracelets out of gum wrappers? True recycling!

      • Sharon Paulsen

        Holy crap, I DO remember those bracelets, now that you mention it! Very cool – that was a fun kid/teen project. Perhaps a new inspirational idea for today’s crop? (But, maybe they still show kids how to do it today in grade school?? I’m childless, by choice and circumstance, so …. dunno).

  8. Bill Blaufuss

    I get the impression that many feel “I didn’t put the litter there, why should I pick it up?”

    Well, the perpetrator is not going to return to pick it up.
    And the alternative is to keep looking at it.
    Or you can pick it up.

    I have an expression: “a little litter is a lot of ugly.”

    Pick up that one or two pieces of litter you see in front of your house or even your neighbor’s house. As you take it to your trash can, look over your shoulder and see how much ugliness you just removed by this simple action.

    You’ll feel great!

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