Friday, July 20, 2012

Maggots! Read at own risk...

I'm not sure what is worse; picking up trash in the extreme cold or the extreme heat. Freezing fingers are no fun, but this summer the heat index has been over 100 degrees a few times.  In this heat, garbage cans become little birthing centers for... yes, maggots.

Like so many things in life, maggots are both really dirty and really clean. They are fly larvae. They spread microbial infections, but they are also used to sterilize wounds in hospitals. Think, hospitals are also the most clean and the most contaminated places around. The sick go there to heal, and the infections also breed there.

WP_000611.jpgMy sanitation truck is a traveling infection. I think about this when I come home and take off my gloves.

What these hands have touched; all the normal human by-products of living. The positive spin on me is that I am a "sanitation engineer." I am a "clean maker." But I get really dirty to make others clean... must be some kind of parable in that.

There is an absolute balance in the universe. There is no clean without making something else dirty. And there is no dirty without cleansing. Pick your poison; religion, politics, housekeeping. It all goes. I am a sanitizer by picking up your garbage. I am a garbageman who sanitizes your space. We call "sane" those who are mentally well. But to be "well" what is discarded?

Back to maggots. They are the perfect balance that live and dwell in garbage. They heal wounds by taking to themselves the infection. These are hospital maggots cleansing a small wound:

Now here are the unscientifically grown maggots in my truck. I initially thought this was a bunch of rice discarded from a kitchen, but in reality they were my own wild sanitation engineers, nature's little recycling agents. Cute little guys...