(Los Alamitos, 1/8/2013, by Dave Emerson) The big trucks began rolling into town a day late, just as they had the week before, so perhaps they caught us unawares last Friday.
Little did we know somewhere in the bowels of the massive Consolidated/Republic/Allied money eating monolith, the Grinch’s evil plot was going according to his pernicious plans.
I should have known something was amiss when the gentleman driving the greenwaste truck made me remove my Christmas tree from the empty greenwaste trash can and leave it on the street. In hindsight, it’s easy to see the Grinch had all his bases covered. While we were enjoying 2013′s Dr. Seuss-themed Rose Parade, the Grinch must have been fuming. . . and plotting!
When the promised tree removal truck hadn’t showed up by 4:45, I called Allied/Republic/Consolidated to see what was going on.
The Grinch had already instructed his evil minions exactly what to say!
The truck for picking up Christmas Trees is running late. He should still be by later tonight. If not, he will definitely be by to remove your tree on Saturday.
Apparently Consolidated’s Grinch even had the weather gods recruited to his cause, for when I awoke Saturday I discovered overnight rain had washed needles from my tree and my neighbrors’ throughout the street.
At least they’ll be gone today, I thought, fool that I was.
Monday morning, I again called the Grinch’s favorite Fortune 500 Conglomerate. They had changed their tune to a sneakier approach, and almost got away with it.
“Thank you for calling Republic/Allied waste. How may I help you today.”
“I live in Los Alamitos, my tree and my neighbors’ Christmas trees werenn’t picked up Friday as scheduled. I called late Friday and was told they’d be picked up Friday night or Saturday, but they’re still in the street.”
“May I please have your address?”
“5,000,000 DollarOvercharge, Los Alamitos”
“Is that a Lane, Drive, Road, Street, or Avenue?”
“It’s the only “Overcharge” in Los Alamitos, and it’s a Way. A long Ways from what we should be paying, in fact.
“And your contact number?”
“Thank you, Mr. Emerson. Please put your tree curbside on your regular pickup day, and we will remove it.”
“You don’t understand, I did that, and you didn’t.”
“Put your tree curbside on your regular pickup day, and we will remove it.”
“And what about my neighbors’ trees?”
“I can’t do anything about that.”
“Can I please speak to a supervisor?”
Fortunately, the supervisor was able to get a better grasp on the situation, and promised to call me back after looking into it.
That afternoon she did, telling me the tree should be picked up by 4 p.m. Monday, 5 at the latest.
I called back at 4:45, leaving a message that we were striking out again & asking her about my neighbors trees. By that time, thanks to our helpful readers, I was aware that none of the single family tracts south of Katella in Los Alamitos had their trees picked up.
She called back after 5:00 & asked if it had been picked up yet. When I told her it hadn’t, she expressed frustration with Consolidated/AlliedGrinch/Republic’s scheduling department and indicated that they were “sweeping” the areas they’d missed to pick up the trees.
I thanked her for her efforts and asked her to look into it and get back to me today.
SuperBrandy to the rescue?
By 2 this afternoon I hadn’t heard back. However, on my way to an appointment I had surveyed Carrier Row and New Dutch, observing dozens and dozens of abandoned, dried up trees littering the gutters. I thought I was in North Long Beach, or the worst part of Garden Grove.
After 30+ years as a Realtor getting obstinate lenders, sellers, buyers, and agents to do the right thing, I thought I didn’t need to involve our busy City Employees in this little problem. Obviously I was wrong.
Perhaps I had forgotten just who I was dealing with. Grincholidated Disposal. ”If it’s green, we’ll take it from your pocket but not your curb.”
So I called City Hall, and was directed to our diligent and cheerful Public Works Superintendent Tony Brandyberry.
He got the info, called the Route Supervisor, and got back to me as promised.
Turns out they still hadn’t finished Cypress either. GrinchPublic had promised Tony, however, that they would start on all Los Alamitos SFR neighborhoods south of Katella at 6 am tomorrow, Wednesday, 1/9/2013. Day 6. We’ll see.
So keep hope alive.
Leave your trees out another night.
We shall overcome. . . .
As always, your thoughts, diplomatically expressed, are welcome.