Sunday, February 21, 2010

Sidewalks and Gum

Have you ever noticed how much chewing gum gets ground into city sidewalks? Well, I have and when you start looking for it, it turns up everywhere! Just think about a busy big city sidewalk for a moment. Wouldn't you say at least 1000 people go by any particular segment of that sidewalk every day? Let's say that's true and that 5% are chewing gum and 2% of that 5% discourteously throw their gum down on the sidewalk as they pass by without even considering the impact of such an act on others. Okay, so 5% of 1000 is 50 and 2% of 50 is exactly one person. Thus, it follows precisely that one person each day drops his or her gum onto any random piece of sidewalk in the big city. Within a month that's 30 pieces of gum that have been deposited on the pavement in front of your favorite Starbuck's or whatever to mar the otherwise lovely concrete that so graciously receives our happy, sojourning feet.

But thankfully, there are power washers who with a combination of highly pressurized water and gritty sand can magically remove all that gummy grime from your walking space. I mean all that gum can get depressing, so it always brings a smile to my face to see the man with the power washer emerge from his cocoon to make our city look new again. What would we do without him? And when will all these nasty gum throwers halt their nefarious ways, so that the power washers can get on with the far more important work of keeping all of the other crevices of our city as gleaming as they should be.

So anti-gumthrowers unite! Stop the indiscriminate disposal of chewing gum on our city streets and come together to celebrate what a city can look like when it is really clean and utterly gum-free.

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