One of my AA buddies has a sobriety anniversary of 18 January. So today sticks out in my mind because I think of G*?!#*. He became an all around good guy when he got sober. A lot of us do.

I just watched two freight trains pass each other coming from opposite directions through Ashland. Both were pulling large green rectangular prismatic containers. We railfans know that the Southbound containers are filled with the household refuse (aka “trash”) of the Metro DC area. The Northbound ones are empty, headed back for more. There is a fancy mega landfill in Charles City County, between Richmond and Williamsburg.

This is what Modern Times is all about, filling the dumps. Sorry, if you think there are nobler aspirations, higher purposes, more beautiful engineering triumphs. These trash trains are the apex of consumer culture. They’re taking our lowly garbage off to a decent burial. If not decent, at least sanitary. Trash, like death, is an equalizer. As consumers, our role is to consume. Pelosi, Trump, Sanders, McConnell all did their parts to keep those big green boxes filled and rolling.

I could give a discourse on landfills. I won’t. Suffice it to say the trash trains won’t stop soon. In the Twelfth Century, peasants and nobles, monks and merchants, all converged around a common goal in the French town of Chartres. They built a magnificent cathedral, reflecting the human desire for restoration of relationship with God.

Today we all do our part to keep the green tubs filled.