Monthly Archives: May 2014

One Man’s Trash: Week 20 Report

WEEK 20: Wissahickon Avenue to Emlen Street

Maps/photos to come.

5 25oz cans Bud Ice (“one extra ounce”)

8 12oz bottles Corona
1 16oz bottle Nantucket Nectar orange mango
1 12oz bottle Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald

– 2 backings Shakespeare brand fishing kits for children: 1 Disney princess, 1 Avengers
1 pc red Solo cup
1 pc random plastic

1 pc balloon and ribbon
1 toy soldier

2 cigarette butts

3 dog shit piles
3 dog shit bags
4 dogs on leash
4 dogs off leash


– forgot to photograph the bags of trash again (one Acme bag?)
– toy soldier for Memorial Day!
– Just below Bluestone Bridge, big piece of metal buried in the sand
– Two fishing kit for kids packing backs: seriously? You bring your kids out here to teach them to fish, and you leave this shit on the banks? Ugh
– Under Walnut Lane Bridge on the Roxborough side needs its own cleanup day — microwave prize find today
– Baptisteron is very overgrown with weeds
– Good lord there is a lot of poison ivy between Kitchens and Livezey Lanes on the Orange Trail
– big backup of ‘flood trash’ just above Devil’s Pool
– bottle of Great Lakes is best beer found year to date

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⇦ WEEK 19WEEK 21 ⇨

One Man’s Trash: Week 19 Report

WEEK 19: Allens Lane & Lincoln Drive to Mt Airy Avenue

Maps/photos to come.

1 750ml bottle Barefoot red moscato wine

1 12oz can Coors Light
1 12oz can Miller Lite

9 pcs random styrofoam

1 20oz cup Popeye’s
1 Amtrak jobs postcard
1 Band-Aid® wrapper
1 pc Yuengling label
1 Christian brochure – “Mama’s Girls”
1 wrapper Now & Later blue raspberry
1 Post-It® Note – Ciara’s phone number (illegible)
1 lid Chik-Fil-A sandwich container

1 ballet shoe
1 sole Nike running shoe

1 arm of sunglasses
1 tangled fishing line
1 clothing tag
1 half of cell phone cover
1 unopened Capri Sun wild cherry

1 box Newport

1 32oz bottle Gatorade strawberry watermelon
1 16oz bottle water Dasani
1 ltr bottle water Deer Park
1 16oz bottle water Deer Park
1 16oz bottle Coca Cola (no label)
1 container Wawa buffalo style chicken wrap
2 Slurpee lids
1 fruit cup Dole
1 small bag David sunflower seeds
1 pc random burlap
7 pcs random plastic
2 straws
1 lid soda Popeye’s
1 pc red Solo cup
1 blunt wrapper Jackpot blueberry
1 blunt wrapper Palma chocolate
1 blunt wrapper Palma plain
1 tag Mammut Indicator (?)
1 wrapper Quaker chewy granola bar
1 bag Mr G chips BBQ & Cheddar
1 small ziploc bag
1 packet Heinz mayo

2 dog shit piles
3 dog shit bags
11 dogs on leash
18 dogs off leash

– What are the stone wall ruins on Cresheim Trail (south side) between the White Trail and the pine grove?

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⇦ WEEK 18WEEK 20 ⇨

One Man’s Trash: Week 18 Report

WEEK 18: Johnson Street to Carpenter’s Woods

Comments/maps/photos to come.

105(!!!) dog shit bags (unused)
10 nasty grocery bags that were in Mt Airy Run
1 sport water bottle Specialized
1 1/2 gallon tea (no label)
1 16oz bottle water Nestlē Pure Life
12oz bottle Gatorade Frost
1 wrapper tampon
1 random piece planter
2 straws
3 pieces twine (resembles Twizzler)
1 blunt wrapper Palma
1 Ziploc bag
1 knot fishing line
4 plastic bags
1 giant piece of burlap
1 label Octan Energy

2 pieces random styrofoam

1 warning label Scott’s Pesticide Treatment Area
1 wrapper Wrigley gum
1 receipt Weavers Way
1 pack snell baitholder

3 pieces aluminum serving tray
1 12oz can Budweiser
1 12oz can Dr Pepper
2 12oz cans Schlitz

1 bike pedal reflector
1 piece plaid fabric

1 horse whip(?)


1 pack Newport
1 cigarette butt

6 dog shit piles
11 dog shit bags
21 dogs on leash
31 dogs off leash



– Monoshone Creek is filthy at Rittenhouse Town, too much to collect.
– You’re adorable and durable.
– Tone Loc Bird call: “cheeba cheeba cheeba”
– THUNDER. Araaraaraaraaa. THUNDER.
– Holy mother of GOD there is a lot of poison ivy out there. The Orange Trail between Kitchens Lane and Mt Airy Avenue physically dares you to step one foot off trail.
– Keeripes! There must be a secret dog shit bag factory on Mt Airy Avenue, because the Mt Airy Run is wholly littered with them every time it rains. This is the second time I’ve cleaned the creek between Wissahickon Creek and the arch bridge over the Mt Airy Trail, and this time there were over 100. (105!)

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⇦ WEEK 17WEEK 19 ⇨

Six Months in Mt Airy: I Like It Here


When I left Philadelphia for Portland nearly five years ago, I wholly credited Penn Treaty Park for reestablishing a personal connection with nature—it and Johnny Brenda’s were my go-to fortresses to escape Fishtown without leaving Fishtown. Watching the tide roll in and out focused my attention on the bigger Delaware River, the one that bubbles out of the ground in the Catskills and empties into the Atlantic below the horn of the Cape May-Lewes Ferry. Portland’s lush greenery cemented that connection as something wholly necessary, wherever I might live. Moving back to Philly a little over a year ago, I knew I had to be somewhere with real green space. Not Rittenhouse green space, but Wissahickon green space. And I knew it had to be Mt Airy.

I like Chestnut Hill and Germantown, and Roxborough, Manayunk, and East Falls have their pluses, but Mt Airy is the sweet spot, the porridge. It’s just right. The low crime rate, the racial and economic diversity, the progressiveness, the SEPTA regional rail lines (and buses), the stuff on Germantown Avenue, the great residential architecture, American Revolution history … all this is well documented. But for me, A#1 at the top of the list is the natural beauty—the tree canopy throughout the neighborhood, the topography and vistas it provides, the direct access to Wissahickon Park.

Mt Airy in paper cut by the one and only EmmaF-C
Greatest gift ever: Mt Airy in paper cut by the talented and lovely Emma F-C

Six months ago, I departed my interim arrangements a surprisingly satisfied customer in Brewerytown, where I’d been living since moving back to Philadelphia from Portland, Oregon. It was nice to watch that neighborhood in mid-transition—it felt very similar to G-Ho of about 12 years ago, before Toll Bros and boring people with boring homes took it over. The growth in Brewerytown, though, is anything but boring, and places like High Point Cafe and Shifty’s Taco and Brewerytown Beats, as well as those in the pipeline like Pizza Brain’s second location and Crime & Punishment Brewing, will keep Brewerytown interesting. Plus—speaking of access to green space—all of East Fairmount Park is right there, from Lemon Hill to Strawberry Mansion and a new plan coming from Penn Praxis to provide even better connectivity via Brewery Hill Drive.

But I knew I had to be in Mt Airy amongst the trees and the birds, so in November, I made the move. These first six months have been a bona fide love fest, getting to know Weavers Way, Earth Bread & Brewery (brewer Tom Baker says proper shorthand is “Earth,” not “Earth Bread”), High Point, the Goat, Chef Ken, Carpenter’s Woods, even busy Lincoln Drive … So I thought, what better way to profess this love than on the 44th annual Mt Airy Day?

My only hangup is a matter of syntax: how to spell it. Mount Airy? Too formal. Mt. Airy? Ehh. Much like I absolutely despise hyphens, I don’t like using dots for anything other than periods. I use “Mr Jones” and “Dr Smith.” Mt Airy? It’s neither AP nor Chicago style, but baby, it’s Skyline style, so here we are, in Mt Airy. (See also: Allens/Allen’s/Allen Lane.) Besides, it’s good to have options.

So: what up 19119! Nice to see ya. It’s nice to be here. See y’all at Cliveden. Happy Mt Airy Day!

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Click any of the 80 photos below to launch a gallery of photos, all taken on the iphone 4S, in chronological order from November 1st through May 4th, Mt Airy Day. Use your right and left arrow keys for best viewing.

One Man’s Trash: Week 17 Report

WEEK 17: Allens Lane & Lincoln Drive to Emlen Street


1 floppy frisbee
1 golf ball
1 small (dog) tennis ball

1 pair pink gloves
1 pink tank top (American Eagle Outfitters)
1 black headband
1 t-shirt (St Bede’s track & field)

3 10oz cups
1 16oz cup Dunkin Donuts
24 piece random styrofoam

1 40oz bottle (brown no label)
1 16oz bottle Mistic (Bahama blueberry)
1 16oz bottle soda (clear no label)
1 16oz bottle Bud Light Platinum

1 16oz coffee cup Wawa
1 box Wawa chicken quesadilla
1 bag Wawa cheddar stuffed pretzel
1 package Washable Face Paint
1 label 26” foam saber
1 receipt William Jones Memorial Library

1 12oz cam Fresca
1 12oz can Orange Crush
3 12oz cans Natural Ice
1 16oz can Miller Lite
1 lid Blistex lip medex
1 12oz can Colt 45 (pull tab)
1 12oz can Budweiser
1 12oz can Rolling Rock
1 12oz can Coca-Cola
2 12oz cans Miller High Life (pull tabs)
1 12oz can Pepsi
1 small can Armour Vienna Sausage

2 skulls (raccoon?)
1 compact case (Monster)
1 piece red ribbon
1 pacifier
1 Nerf bullet
1 Pilot pen
1 bike pedal reflector
1 chip clip with blue ribbon attached
2 pieces random broken ceramic
1 piece random fabric
1 Harborside Health Clinic doob tube
1 lid deodorant

1 real estate sign (Michael Byrne)
1 part street construction sign
1 medium planter (black)
1 hot dog container Wawa
1 32oz cup McDonald’s
1 16oz cup 7-Eleven Gulp
1 16oz cup Wawa
1 12oz Keystone Light party cup
1 32oz bottle Gatorade Frost
1 25oz bottle water Nestlē Pure Life
1 20oz bottle Pepsi
1 small bottle Sutter Home sweet red wine
1 20oz bottle water Deer Park
1 16oz bottle water Deer Park
1 20oz bottle Gatorade Frost
1 20oz bottle Arizona fruit punch
2 16oz bottles water (no label)
1 16oz(?) bottle unidentifiable
1 small bottle Kool-Aid Bursts
1 16oz cup Auntie Anne’s
1 16oz bottle water PurAqua
1 mylar balloon (pentagon shaped)
1 plastic bag Barnes & Noble
1 plastic bag KFC
2 Ziploc bags
1 baggie
1 shipping envelope
2 bodega bags
4 soda lids
3 straws
1 rubber glove
1 plant tab Pansy
1 pack snelled baitholder
1 bag Herr’s kettle chips
1 bag Pathmark meals to go
1 pouch Gu energy gel
1 bag Cheetos
1 wrapper Air Heads candy
1 label Gatorade
1 label Smart Sense water
1 wrapper Jungle Jollies candy
1 bag TGIFriday’s potato skins
1 bag Herr’s potato chips salt & vinegar
1 bag sour neon Nightcrawlers
1 label Poland Spring water


1 pack Marlboro menthol
1 pack Newport
1 pack Marlboro
2 cigarette butts

3 dog shit piles
7 dog shit bags
2 dogs on leash
3 dogs off leash



– I commonly mistake birch bark for litter. (Ho HO.)
– Nelson Bird call: HA ha. HA ha. HA Ha ha.
– Little chatty bluish gray birds under brush.
– Cresheim Valley not too devastated by the flood that crushed the Schuylkill.
– Poison ivy is from the angriest plant family. It’s so nondescript and boring looking that it’s not even pedigree—it is a mutt with its irregular hillbilly teeth. Urushiol and all those who swim on it, PLEASE DIE.
– Lots of starlings on the edge of Cresheim Creek.
– Tire at Cresheim Creek II @ White Trail
– “Wooden ostrich” on fallen log on Orange Trail below the Covered Bridge.
– When you pick trash in the woods, you need a quality all purpose tool. You need a Leatherman. @leatherman, Portland, OR.
– When you hike in the woods after a torrential storm, you need reliable boots. You need Timberland boots. @timberland, Stratham, NH.

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⇦ WEEK 16WEEK 18 ⇨