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  • Writer's pictureLaurie Granieri

Picking Up

Updated: Apr 9, 2022

Each April, I participate in the township-wide cleanup. I don bright orange gloves and walk the streets with with my own garbage picker (so much fun!) and a contractor's bag. I love it. There's something so meditative about walking slowly and peering at the ground. I tend to walk quickly, and this is so different, much more relaxing.



I now associate skunk cabbage with this annual ritual, because it's always poking through when I wander with the garbage stick.


This might be my thing. So, my doctor yesterday told me that I need to find that thing that gets me into a flow state, try something I've never done before. She, for instance, took up the piano. She gets lost when she plays. I feel this way when I get deep into a piece of writing. This is where it happens for me. But right now, writing feels fraught, too high up in my head. Peering at the ground is...grounding.


Some realizations: People don't finish their beer; the beer they do toss along the roadsides is always cheap---Lite, Natty Light, Yeungling, mostly; I can't go one walk without retrieving at least one Fireball mini bottle---always a mini bottle. My theory about Fireball---which I've seen all over, no matter where I roam----is that it appeals to kids because of the cinnamon flavor, the heat and the sugar. It's a starter alcohol. I can imagine some kid in a Kia tossing it out the passenger-side window as his buddy takes the curve a little too fast.



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