Tuesday, April 17, 2007

"Trailer Trash"

I've lived in Southern Indiana for 5 years now and have gotten used to the distinction between "Trailer Dwellers" and "Trailer Trash". It still amazes me when I see it. Now bear in mind I used to live in a "double-wide" myself (Sunnyvale, CA era 1991). I understand not having enough money for a "real house", in fact back then I could barely pay RENT on my trailer ... so people who have managed to actually buy land and a trailer and live on it, I respect that.

But what I saw yesterday just blows my mind. I was driving around southern Indiana checking out "Horse Campgrounds" (places you can camp and ride horses) and drove through some of the most amazing areas. Places where the term "Trailer Trash" just pops to mind. Imagine a 'major' county road (by 'major' I mean paved and 1 lane each way with a real yellow line down the middle). Along the highway, Hundreds , ney, THOUSANDS, of small plots of land with modest dwellings, largely of the trailer ("mobile home") variety. But ... here and there, and in some areas I drove through, mostly EVERYWHERE, was the "Trailer Trash" ... How literal a word that is. I always thought it was a stereotype ... but I've come to learn its a real-type. Front yards literally full of trash. Rusted car wheels with worn out tires half off, weeds growing threw them. Beer cans, bleach bottles, black plastic bags strewn all over. 30 year old rusted out cars with the hood open as if they were just working on it today (but weeds growing under the car prove otherwise).

In several (and I mean MORE THEN ONE) place I saw totally destroyed mobile homes just sorta pushed out of the way and newer ones installed behind them, leaving a corpse of a home in the front yard (along with multiple dead cars). Even a few cases of the stereotypical engine block ... but for the most part, just total trash with no obvious intent to reuse, fix or dispose of. Oven there are hills where dead cars were just pushed over the edge but didn't get very far ...

I've been scratching my brain for a day now trying to figure out why people do this ?

1 comment:

Chris said...

I think it may have to do with the complacency brought about by a culture that doesn't value self-respect very highly.