51. Trash Truck Misses Pick-up

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Every Monday night, Felix checked the big blue container in the carport behind his apartment building. If the container was at least a third full, he would take it out to the street for pick-up. Monday night, it was two-thirds full. He rolled it out into the street.

The next day, he checked the container. It was still almost full of recyclables. That was odd, because all the other blue containers across the street were empty. He could tell because a couple of lids were open. He walked across the street to double-check. Hmm, he wondered. Then he looked up his side of the street. There were two blue containers standing there. He walked about 120 feet up the street and lifted each lid. Both containers were empty. How could the truck have missed his container?

He went upstairs to his apartment and called city hall. They connected him to the public works department. Susan said she would call Acme Trash to let them know about the missed container. On Wednesday, Felix checked the container again. It was still full. But, the big green dumpster in the carport was missing. Apparently, the message that Susan sent to Acme Trash had been misunderstood. Acme picked up the big green dumpster, which had already been emptied on Tuesday, instead of the blue container.

Felix left a message on Susan's answer machine, saying to forget it. Then he went downstairs and pulled the almost full container back into its space in the carport. Let it sit there till next Tuesday, he told himself. Had he left another message, he was worried that his building would accidentally get dropped permanently off Acme's pick-up list.


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