On Friday, August 19, 2011, I posted Eating free with thrown-out food. Frugal Down Under added a comment to my post about you tube videos of freegans. That is exactly what got me started dumpster diving for food--a video of freegans in a dumpster. Now, I want you all to hear how and why I did it. The thrown-out food from last Friday never saw the dark of a dumpster. The tomatoes had been placed on top of the dumpster moments before because I was not expected.
First of all: I do not get in the dumpster. I reach in.
I dumpster dive for the thrill, because I am cheap, because it is free, because it's there, because it is wasteful to trash all I find, because I find things I cannot afford, because I find things I will not buy.
Let me say that I have gotten boxes for packing for years by looking in clean dumpsters or retrieving them from behind stores. I never get boxes that have garbage thrown on top of them. Boxes that have had rain on them, even if they have dried, are left behind. Technically, if retrieving boxes is dumpster diving, many of us are guilty. Okay, let's leave collecting boxes for collecting food and eating it.
Several years ago, someone posted a YouTube video of professionals, doctors in Nashville, I believe, dumpster diving for food. I was intrigued. I read and heard and watched more. One day, in broad daylight, I decided to check out the dumpsters behind a store I was passing in another town. A man was going through the dumpster, or so I thought. His new Chrysler, his wife, and an open trunk waited. He was well-dressed. He did not really go through anything. Several boxes of produce had been left for his retrieval. This was an inside job. I told him I knew that someone who worked in the store left this just for him.
My issue: someone in the store was breaking all store policies. Yes, I was irritated I could not be the recipient...lol.
Yes, I was mean. I actually saw the boxes, all neat, clean, organized, left on top of the gross insides of the dumpster. He told me to shut up...lol...and quickly left. It's a good thing that he drove on pavement. If the surface had been gravel, I would have been thoroughly sprayed with rocks. Yes, he was in a hurry. Nothing else in the dumpster was organized, laid out in boxes. All had been just upturned so the produce landed in nasty places.
Nighttime would be my time, I decided. Why? 1) I knew people who worked in the businesses that were facing or in view of the dumpster. 2) I really have no strong desire to have the police chase me away.
Next time, I will talk of germs and nasty, gross dumpsters, and how I overcome this issue: How Nasty is the Food?
Have you collected and eaten food from a dumpster?
Any questions? I will answer all questions in one of the half dozen posts I have planned. I won't answer in comments sections, because I would be putting full posts in comments. Any comments that are not questions? It will be interested to see if people around the world are gagging or reading in morbid fascination.
If you live in another country other than a First World country, please comment on the dumpster diving attitudes where you live.