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18WT 027:  Let's Clean It Up America!

July 06, 2021  Patrick Heller / Janet McCue

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Litter Facts Sheet (from Don't Trash Arizona)

50 Ways To Take Care Of The Environment Sheet (Not Just AZ)

18WT 027:  On this rollercoaster ride our host talk about much more than trucks and trucking. They want to Clean it up America. They jump right into it and say how they want to clean up the litter America and 90% of Americans agree that there is too much litter in America.

Patrick brings up K.A.B. (KEEP AMERICA BEAUTIFUL) and what if all individuals would pick up 152 pieces of litter. Why 152? According to the latest Litter in America Study, (that’s a real thing) if everyone made the individual action of picking up 152 pieces of litter (all at once) there would be no litter on the ground until someone littered again.

Their hashtag is #152andyou ~ That’s the amount of litter each person in America needs to pick up to make our nation a litter-free place. Our hosts agree that’s a lot of shit on the ground! A lot of this, a lot of stupid people that don’t know how to tie down their stuff. Janet calls it a shit-ton of litter. Patrick agrees that is a shit-ton of litter on our streets and highways and riverbanks.

They found a lot of things off of Keepamericabeautiful.org website.   They also compiled a lot of things that pertain to their beautiful state of Arizona. But it is also useful in all states in their opinion. They love their state, 2nd Amendment baby they point out episode 26, they talk about it there.

However today it is not episode 26, it is about Let’s Clean it up America! Keep America Beautiful has been around since 1953. Roadside litter is down 54% in the past decade.

There are still 50 billion pieces of litter on the ground in America. Litter is Ugly: More than 105,000 bags of litter were picked up from Valley freeways in 2020. Just in the valley, the freeways, (the 60, I-10, I-17, Loop 101, Loop 202,& Loop 303). Those are where this was picked up from. It is unhealthy: Toxic chemicals in cigarette butts can contaminate water systems. Patrick says that if you insist on smoking then put it out in your ashtray, every car has one. Janet pipes up with she is almost certain that new cars do not have ashtrays. His retort is that what is this world coming to, no ashtrays, no cigarette lighters?!

Patrick says it is the Fucking millennials fault, Janet says it doesn’t matter because they don’t smoke. Patrick says he is not a quitter, he is on hiatus, he is going to pick up a pack of Newport’s ,and start smoking again, something that he knows what toxins are in. Janet just is against e-cigarettes. Somehow baby Jesus and love get brought into the subject. We are not sure how, but with these two you never know. He got “the look”.

Her thing is the cigarette butts, they are everywhere, roads, parking lots, driveways, river banks, lawns, parks. Pick up your fucking butts and field strip them, people. Yes, Janet cussed. Over cigarette butts, she has a thing about them!   Mark your calendar people and watch the video too. She then explains how to field strip a butt.   Go to 18wheeltalk.com.youtube. for the video you lazy bastards.   Get your fucking butts off our streets people.

Animals pick up butts and they are toxic to them and the water system as well. Who wants all that toxin in their water? Just go kill yourself, not us people. Woosah! Is Patricks’ reply as Janet rolls her eyes.

Types of litter are  Food/organic material – 33% Small pieces of paper – 11% Cigarette butts – 7% Food wrappers – 6%.

They then go on a rant about eating in the car and food wrappers hitting windshields. And debris on freeways causes 51,000 accidents in the U.S. every year, injuring nearly 10,000. Nationally, about 125 people die every year from dangerous debris.   That gives our hosts a moment to think about it. Debris causes deaths. Some people are saying it is only 125 people. But it counts when it is your loved one dying because some dumbass threw out a burger wrap.

Janet’s’ favorite new statistic is that an estimated 207 million PPE items were littered on U.S. roadways and waterways through early fall 2020.   Yes million, and you know that is all from the masks at the grocery store and at stoplights and parking lots.

This brings up their episode on whether to mask or not to mask episode 22.  People are so stupid, just throw the mask in the garbage if you don’t want it. All of this garbage and PPE adds up to more than 2,000 pieces of litter per mile. Per Mile Janet points out. Patrick freeze faced don’t forget to check it out on YouTube.

When Janet drove tractor-trailer she smoked, She drove tanker and all the other drivers smoked too. The boss took ashtrays out of the truck. They all smoked in the trucks and rolled the cherry out the windows. The veterans would drop the butts from their pockets to the garbage in the breakroom. The boss laughed.

Fun facts from Patrick! HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO DECOMPOSE? Banana peel: 3 weeks to 5 years They agree that they can see this one. But it gets weird from there. Disposable diaper: 500 years, how did they figure this out? Patrick says he believes that they went back in time like Bill & Ted. Janet disagrees and begins the Time Warp dance. His turn to roll his eyes. A Styrofoam container, more than 1 million years. A plastic jug takes  1 million years also. Here is a thought people, Rinse, Recycle and Reuse! It is really easy! Cars are so full of plastic they will explode when they hit, or melt.

Patrick points out that plastic bags take 500 to 1000 years, take them to the store and throw them in the in there is what these two do. Almost every town has a recycling facility and a way to recycle. So make use of it, sort it out people, they say!

When you get water in a bottle, refill it, and reuse it then recycle it after a few uses. There are hard plastics and soft plastics like bottles vs. bags. Patricks’ water bottle has California CRV (cash redemption value), it depends on the size.

Aluminum cans, take 200 to 500 years.  Recycle like our hosts have done for years and you can get money out of it. Janet used to walk the river banks here in the valley and collect bottles and cans for gas money. Some states pay by the can, some pay by the pound.  She tries to ignore his jokes and keeps going on. She points out that her sister and at least one brother did this also. . Patrick calls her a bag lady but then points out how he used to fill the back of his small car with cans and go turn them in for cash for gas also. He crossed state lines, maybe a tad illegal, but not really if the store and everyone knows what you are doing. Patrick is a hustler, a wheeler & a dealer from way back is what Janet got out of his story. He admits to having been a hustler.

It takes a little work to get the money, but the grocery cart full of cans put into a machine, is a good coupon at the store.

They say that 45% of litter is accidental and comes from debris falling from trucks or from other unsecured loads.  Unsecured loads can result in fines ranging from $500 to $1,000. An unsecured load can cause major damage when you are going down the road. That 2x4 that is lying in the back of your truck can go flying into someone’s’ windshield. They had just seen a video of that exact thing happening.

The 2x6 flew out of a truck bed, into the air and through a windshield directly into the passenger seat. Which luckily was empty, or somebody would have been killed by it. 51.2 billion pieces of litter are left on roadways in the U.S., equaling 6,729 pieces per mile. Just here in Arizona,  425 bags of litter are removed each weekday from Valley freeways, totaling about 1.5 million pounds of litter each year. • The cost of a littering fine is $500.

The cost of Litter costs Maricopa County taxpayers $5 million a year for the 150,000 hours of labor needed to clean up the Valley’s roadways. Litter costs the Valley when it impacts efforts to attract new businesses and tourists. Janet points out how disappointed she was when she visited Paris while she lived in Germany. Paris was filthy, Germany was not.

Then they talk about how they used to go to the lake and go fishing and if there was a lot of litter they would simply go to another place to fish. When they should have taken a bag and gloves and picked the litter up and put it I one of the garbage cans nearby. It was really easy to say that I don’t get paid to clean it.

Like Patrick said, if all individuals to pick up 152 pieces of litter America would be clean. Janet asks how o we get people to pick up after themselves? Patrick brings up the video of the poor turtle with the straw stuck in his nostril.

Litter costs the state economy in lost productivity, congestion, and traffic delays when commuters sit in traffic because of litter in the through lanes.   Janet talks about how she has been stuck in a variety of states in her rig waiting behind spills, including nails in Detroit. Patrick sympathizes with her as he too has been stuck behind a variety of dumb people who didn’t secure their load.

It is crazy, it costs lives, appearance, it costs so much.


Mobilized 10’s of millions of volunteers and participants. Picked up over half a BILLION pounds of litter and debris. Recycled over 250M pounds of materials. Cleaned over half a million miles of roads, trails, and along waterways. Planted millions of trees, flowers, and bulbs. Janet explains that they are talking Arizona has a list of 50 things you can do to clean up America. Because the list works for all states and countries too. If there is a specific link for something in Arizona, there is a similar link for most states,

So as they go back and forth, Patrick gave out #6 Adopt a Highway and Janet gives him crap.   Janet brings up #9 borrow a book because she reads a lot and back in NY, she had a lot of friends that read, and they swapped books. Here in Phoenix she donated to schools, shelters, battered women shelters, Rehabs, lots of places you can take a book before it goes to a landfill. And it is tax deductible.

#12 they talk about recycling cardboard and paper and further down they talk about not printing a lot. Janet and Patrick make use of their paper by anything that they print and would normally recycle, first gets torn in half and stapled together for note pads for Janet. Then they get recycled. Used for starting fires for camping and the charcoal grill.

Patrick likes #13 because he was born in April and Arbor Day, plant a fucking tree. Janet prays again because of trees and Patrick talking about them (the trees) having sex. You can get free trees especially around Arbor Day. If they owned their home, they would take advantage of that.

#16 is they can get a free travel trash bag for their car. Google it from your state or get it from the car was when you are cleaning out the food wrappers from your car (#14) and cigarette butts.

The next that is easy is to donate old clothes. Janet has a thing about people throwing everything out. #20, you can donate to a shelter, the Salvation Army, Goodwill, wherever. Here in Arizona some schools have donation bins for clothes and boxes. They then use the money for their sports and music programs.

#22 starting a home garden is a great idea, unless you live in Arizona. Vegetables, Herbs. Patrick goes into left field and Janet offers to smack him. Start a garden and then start a compost with food waste. It is great fertilizer for your garden and flowers. Patricks’ Dad used to do this and had really good garden a few years ago. Now he still has tomatoes.

#25 makes them laugh because Patrick helped Janet put up guards on the rain gutters on her house in NY. She stumbles on her tongue, and it should make you laugh, as she really blushes! The guards keeps out debris and saves on resources.

#26 Patrick says, Dawn stop using plastic straws. Janet has niece named Dawn that has always had a thing about straws.

They have done #28 for a long time, energy efficient light bulbs. She wants to try #29 dryer balls instead of dryer sheets. This brings on blonde jokes and man jokes and baby Jesus.

Janet’s’ Grandma did #3, when Janet was a young newlywed, she would send her gifts wrapped in nice dishtowels. Two gifts in one. That is one of her favorite things. Patrick wants her to name a good millennial. They won’t like the next rant.

Janet does #34 birthday cards, or Christmas cards she cuts the picture out and uses them for gift tags. She reminded him that before they were a couple, the gifts she took over for holidays and birthdays also had homemade bows. Patrick said they all loved the curly ribbons and bows.

Patrick says everyone should do #36, switch to paperless billing. Everything, just switch, you can go online and find it, or there is an app for that! Even us!

We are on your favorite podcast player or go to our library, 18wheeltalk.com and go to the episode library tab. They are all there! You get a video and an audio. You can even comment there. Hashtag us on Twitter and Instagram #18WT

#46 before you grab a paper towel, go for a towel. Our hosts have a lot of older white towels they use for spills. Use cloth when you can, then rinse it and hang it to dry. If you are going to use your washer and dryer, use them at night, not during peak hours.

Patrick goes back to #44 Rinse, Reuse, Recycle

Don’t forget 50 ways to keep the state clean and KEEP AMERICA BEAUTIUL #152ANDYOU

5 STARS Don’t make us beg. Janet begins to beg but Patrick forgot to tell her why.

They need help raising money for Breast Cancer Support. They have 3 shirts that are really kewl with the logo looking pink and 50% of the profits going to support breast cancer. That’s from now until the end of October.

Thanks for Listening.