It’s a cop-movie cliché: the big fight scene in a warehouse area, surrounded by trucks and trash, where, amidst the flying bullets, a scavenger is climbing into a dumpster, presumably in search of food.
Chances are, that scavenger will come up empty. Edible food, leftover or otherwise, takes up very little space in a dumpster.
“A dumpster is a terrible place to look for food,” says one SLM staffer. “But if you’re looking to take a nap, mattresses are very popular in dumpsters.”
SLM knows dumpsters. The company was founded as a waste-management firm, and eventually branched out, tackling all aspects of facilities management. One of SLM’s most popular services is its Bulk Pickup program.
“With the Bulk Pickup program, SLM gets rid of your most awkward, heaviest and most unwieldy junk,” says the staffer. “Dumpsters are often involved.”
SLM’s Bulk Pickup crews have seen plenty of objects that might not immediately be associated with dumpsters. From the world of transportation, bicycles are surprisingly common. Not so common are the random car parts, including old tires, seats, transmissions and engines.
Refrigerators, both consumer and commercial, have made the leap into the dumpster. So have all types of shelving, wood, metal and plastic. Worn couches and chairs from homes sometimes share space with almost brand-new office couches and chairs from start-ups that never quite got started.
There’s another item that nobody wants to find in a dumpster but often do. For the sake of delicacy, let’s just say that Lassie isn’t really romping on a farm, Timmy.
Is there such a thing as having a favorite type of junk? SLM’s thinks so. “There’s something almost poetic about a dumpster that’s filled with other dumpsters.” In this particular case, the dumped dumpsters were abandoned by servicing companies that went out of business. So they all ended up in super-dumpsters, which were removed by SLM’s Bulk Pickup. “We tell people that we do it all so they don’t have to,” says the staffer. “Even when it involves dumpsters within dumpsters within dumpsters.”