I admit it. I have OCC. Obsessive Compulsive Composting.
When I see an unused stem on the cutting board, a crushed eggshell carelessly tossed in the garbage can, or a filament of parsley left in the sink, I stop what I’m doing, I stop what EVERYONE is doing, and let out a blood-curdling, “WAIT!!!!!”
It is then, after everyone around me is frightened that somebody’s finger was about to be hacked off, that I dive into the depths of the drain to retrieve that 1/4 chunk of rotten potato or 1 inch basil stem and look at whomever is nearest to me like they are insane. What were you thinking, people?!
Why? Because “THAT GOES IN THE COMPOST!”
As diseases go, OCC isn’t bad. It’s not like there should be a television show about how crazy I am (um…I don’t think) and it’s not like I’m harming myself or others; I’m simply obsessively compulsively composting.
Sure, I look at old vegetable peelings in California and am tempted to pack them in my luggage and fly them back to New York to do you-know-what with them. And yes, I have actually saved thousands of eggshells from thousands of breakfasts and, well, brought them with me in a carry-on. And yeah, I can’t stand being in a place where I can’t compost and simply toss out the tops of carrots like they mean nothing to anyone!
So? I just don’t feel like I have a real problem.
My husband, who you’ve heard about before because, despite my idiosyncrasies, he does so many nice things for me, is totally cool with my OCC. He’s what OCC Anonymous calls an ‘OCC Enabler’. So when my neighbor’s giant black locust tree fell down in a storm last year, my husband did what any OCC Enabler would do: he got an idea.
It took him days to build the thing. Bottles of Alleve. Packets of Electrolytes. Design and redesign. He stubbed his thumb. Got splinters. Lost a few pounds in the heat. Tweaked out his back. Got six-pack biceps in the process.
Milled from my neighbor’s downed Black Locust tree and sunk into the ground a few feet, it will likely be there long after we’re long gone, after our children are long gone, after the house has fallen down, after all life forms have vanished from the planet.
A Post Apocalyptic garbage can.
We call it the Compost Condo because it’s nicer than some apartments in Manhattan. If all else failed, you could move into it and have a decent space to move around in. You could have guests over. Invite the grandchildren.
It’s the best gift a girl with OCC could ever ask for.
Take off your boots before you come in here!