Tuesday, November 03, 2009

EPA Is Going To The Birds!

Actually, the EPA is taking FROM the birds. But I like the title better with its double meaning. Before you tune out, thinking this is going to be a rant about the millions or billions or whatever illions we are spending on the environment, take time to at least see the photo. It seems only fair that I let you know SOME of what I know about this particular site before springing the funny photo on you. If you live in Montgomery and have for any length of time, you have, no doubt traveled Perry Hill Road and/or Harrison Road. You probably also know that there is a used car lot at the corner where these two roads intersect. And most of you know that this car lot has been there a long time. Perhaps you have shopped some of the fleet vehicles often offered for sale. I have no need for the trucks with dump bodies and hydraulic lifts, but when I see them I begin to imagine how I might use them in a tree surgeon business or some more imaginative manner. This is why window shopping is a bad idea for me. It creates an imagined need.

But this was not always a car lot. If you go back far enough, there was a time that it was a service station. Yep, probably far enough back that it offered SERVICE and not just gasoline to be pumped by the customer. But like Goober-n-them back in Mayberry, these folks never thought much about the huge metal underground tank that stored the gas for the pumps. And over time water would settle to the bottom of these tanks and cause rust which naturally led to leaks. I don't want to attempt to be scientific here for two reasons. 1) I don't want the EPA shutting down my blog, then placing me on a terrorist watch list and 2) I am pretty ignorant of the details. Apparently, there is a plume of underground pollution affecting the ground water in the area of what is now a car lot. And for years--lots of years--the EPA has been showing up like a Ghost Busters convention and walking around in strange white coveralls, drilling holes in the parking lot for test cores and running tests on this dirt that obviously is much more complex than what the forensics people do on CSI. Those guys on CSI can examine a dead body, determine what trace minerals are in the fingernails, and dig up another body from 62 years ago to perform comparative DNA tests--all in 58 minutes. The EPA has been looking at this dirt for at least 30 years. About a year of two ago they built this mysterious tank/pump/measuring/reporting apparatus behind the office of this car lot. It is all a very clinical "Area 51-looking" white. Then they erected a 6-foot fence around it so nobody can see what is there. It is all VERY mysterious. I eased by one day to read the sign on the door to area 51 and it says something about EPA re-mediation. Apparently, this system runs 24 hours per day pumping water from deep underground, cleaning it somehow and pumping it back. Again that is probably a very south-Alabama explanation because I went to the EPA website and quickly decided I did not have 6 years to sort through how this system works.

"So what?" you say. "So what?" says I. Until today. When I noticed this sign on the grass next to area 51.

That is correct, ladies and gentlemen. You, the taxpayer, are spending multiple millions to clean up this "superfund site". But IF you feed the birds and IF they poop on the Area 51 fence, you WILL be charged with clean up cost. Now, those of you who know me best know already what a sign like this communicates to me. I can read the words, but what I really hear is "Roxy, I double dog dare you to throw some bread crumbs out here and see what happens." And I was leaning toward attempting it except for two things; 1) although I am behind this huge green fence and on somebody else's parking lot, they may have a security camera and already have tapped my bank account after running my tag number and 2) what if the clean up cost include more than washing bird poop off the fence--what if they tranfer the entire gazillion dollar cost of the superfund clean up to my checking account? I have overdraft protection, but how far will that go? I know what you are thinking; "Roxy, you are a little paranoid about all this Area 51, Big Brother is watching you stuff." You think so? Then explain to me how the property owner appeared like Casper before I could take the second photo? I DID, however, take the second photo. And it gives a broader view of this property, including the fence around Area 51. This gentleman did NOT like the fact that I was photographing his sign. He asked questions. He wanted to know who I am. He did not think "K" was a funny answer. In fact, he did not seem to think anything was funny. I quickly turned the tables and asked him questions. Let's just say we did not learn much about each other. We did learn this though, he does not see the humor in his sign and he now knows that I think it is HILARIOUS! Here is the wider photo of Area 51 with the warning sign. Be advised--if you have read this far, there may be a satellite reading your tag number right now.
Honestly, do you think some bread crumbs between the parking lot and this "top secret" fence is going to lead to a diminished view here?

1 comment:

Lerra said...

That sign is so weird. That whole thing is weird. Apparently I haven't been over there in awhile because I haven't seen this intriguing contraption.