Confessions of a 50-Something Dad: The garbage trucks

Garbage trucks can be huge in the life of a 3-year-old.

Jude has a pretty nice toy garbage truck, complete with sound effects that simulate noises such as trash being dumped and the beep-beep-beep of the large vehicle backing up. I think it’s actually a recycling truck, but to him, it’s a garbage truck. It even came with a miniature trash dumpster.

One day about a month ago, my wife decided to do a YouTube search on garbage trucks. And you know what? There are hundreds of garbage truck videos. You’d think after watching several of these videos, the boy would become bored.

Nope, he needs to watch the garbage trucks in Apache Junction pick up trash in the next video. It might not resemble the garbage truck action he had just seen in Santa Barbara.

Can you tell, I’m not a big fan of the garbage trucks.

One video that Jude has come across that he really seems to enjoy is this guy named “Blippi.” A comical character, Blippi dances around and acts silly while educating his viewers on the ins and outs of garbage trucks (and many other topics that appeal to children).

Blippi even has his “Garbage Truck Song.”

“Garbage trucks … garbage trucks. Driving through the town picking cans up off the ground, garbage trucks.

“Sometimes when I wake up early in the morning I hear a monster sound. I look out the window and there’s a garbage truck, picking cans up off the ground. It empties the can and puts it back down and drives away so loud.

“Garbage trucks … garbage trucks” … and on and on.

Jude calls out continuously, “Look at the garbage truck” as the videos play. If you don’t respond and acknowledge that you’ve looked at the garbage truck on the screen, he’ll just repeat himself over and over.

When we have the TV off, Jude can just go to his bookshelf to pick out one of his titles, a few that include garbage trucks. Last week, he and Mom went out in front of the house on Thursday morning to watch the Republic Services trucks pick up trash, recycling and yard waste. I think they hit all three.

The driver on the trash route had to get out of the truck to pick up garbage that had fallen out of our neighbor’s overflowing container. I was glad to see him give a friendly wave to my kid. (Those workers have to know that their garbage trucks can be a thrill to a toddler).

There is something that comes out of this experience that’s somewhat disturbing. I’ll be working in my home office upstairs and in the distance can hear my wife singing the Blippi garbage truck song while she’s doing some sort of household chore. Then it gets stuck in my head.

“It empties the can and puts it back down and drives away so loud, garbage trucks.”

(Brad Fuqua is publisher/editor of the Philomath News and spends what little free time he has with his wife and two young sons. Do you have a fun story to share about your kids or grandkids? Email it to me at [email protected] and it just might end up in a future post).

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