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The Dumpster Shirt


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The other day on the way back from the grocery we passed a dumpster in an alley behind a discount store. This particular dumpster is always overflowing; boxes and broken wares tend to be scattered around regardless of when you pass by.

As we approached a flapping bit of purple caught my eye. “What’s that?” I asked my daughter.

“It looks like a shirt,” Katie responded. Curious, we walked up to see what it was. The purple piece was the hood of a purple and gray striped long sleeve shirt; it isn’t made of fleece like a regular hoodie and is apparently designed to be somewhat form fitting. It didn’t have any obvious damage so rather than be seen debating by the dumpster we stuffed it in our bag and took it home.

After a good wash I examined it again. Not a single rip, tear or stain marred the surface. The only thing I can figure is that it was a return or an item that became unsaleable when the tag was ripped off. Fortunately for us, it was a perfect fit:

The shirt

Katie wearing the shirt we found.

Katie decided to try it on tonight and wear it around the house. I sweet-talked her into posing for a quick shot.

Have you ever scored something from a dumpster? Please share your stories in the comments below.


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5 Comments

  1. Manuel wrote:

    It’s pretty incredible how much stuff we throw out. I saw a documentary about dumpster diving a while ago… It really makes you think about the quantity and price of food.

    Friday, November 30, 2012 at 2:33 pm | Permalink
  2. Annie wrote:

    I had a friend years ago who knew when all the local stores threw out their stuff. She got meats, breads, cakes, canned goods–you name it! Enough stuff that she never had to buy groceries and she loved to share. Unfortunately at that time I was a bit squeamish so I passed on her generosity but several others were delighted!

    We talk about how many are starving and doing without yet these places throw out an incredible amount of stuff… It is truly amazing.

    Friday, November 30, 2012 at 6:21 pm | Permalink
  3. Bj wrote:

    I also have seen people throw away items which others could use. Such waste. A freind of mine who had gained quite a bit of weight the last few years was going to throw away a bunch of clothes but remembered that I had recently moved here to a colder climate from a warmer one. . . she brought over three large bags of sweaters and long sleeve shirts a few weeks ago that we like new. They are now in my closet and I’ve already made use of a few sweaters.

    Friday, November 30, 2012 at 9:25 pm | Permalink
  4. Annie wrote:

    That is wonderful BJ! One of the local churches here throw a free yard sale every year.. they take donations and put out everything they get.. all free for the taking. All they request is that you only take what you need and that you don’t take the items and resell them. I wish more places would do something similar. It really helps the community and saves so much stuff from the landfill!

    Friday, November 30, 2012 at 11:08 pm | Permalink
  5. bio wrote:

    Oh yeah I have gotten tons of scrap , clothes, books, even food from dumpsters.

    Saturday, December 1, 2012 at 10:56 am | Permalink