THE DISCOVERY OF GARBOLOGY One day in September, 1970, Ann Duncan and I were on our way to the Cafe
Gaslight on MacDougal Street and we happened to pass Bob Dylan's townhouse. For four long years I had been studying Dylan's poetry, trying to crack the code of his symbolism. As I eyed the home of the reclusive poet I wondered what went down behind the door that Dylan had slammed in my face when I had tried to discuss my work with him. Just then I noticed Dylan's shiny new steel garbage can. My mind flashed back to a Lord Buckley riff from Johanna and Whale: "I ain't out side anymore, I'm inside now." and said to myself, "Now, there's something that was inside and it's outside now." I lifted the lid, I opened Pandora's can, I reached in and the first thing, THE FIRST THING, that I pulled out of Dylan's garbage was a half-finished letter written by Bob Dylan to Johnny Cash. Click here to see a recreation of the discovery of garbology and the letter to Cash. "Holy Moley, " I said, "Ann, this is no ordinary garbage-can, this is a gold mine! "
Thus at that moment the clandestine trade craft of non-governmental garbology was founded.
Garbology, in its pure form, is the study of human personality and contemporary civilization through the analysis of garbage, or "garbanalysis." The basic premise is "You Are What You Throw Away." Garbage is a macrocosmic reflection, a mirror on life. The unassailable reality is that every living being makes waste. Excretion is both natural and universal, a process in which all life forms participate; the more sophisticated the organism, the more sophisticated the waste it produces. The garbologist, however, does not study feces. We leave this to the medical profession and to the CIA, which has been known to analyze the excretions of foreign leaders in order to get an accurate picture of their health. Garbologists stick to other types of human trash for subjects of study: refuse, garbage, junk, trash, etc. Archaeologists sift through this kind of stuff, too, but only if it is ancient. The garbologist finds his research material on the street today (or, usually, early in the morning) and from it he derives a mirrored image of human behavior and the modern world in which we live. IMPURE GARBAGE After my initial discovery in Dylan's garbage I realized that this method of research had great potential as a clandestine method. The lives of the rich, famous and powerful could be penetrated, great secrets revealed, plain truths brought to light from beneath the glittery facade. Garbology was a new weapon in the war against lies, injustice and faceless bureaucracy. The study and analysis of garbage could possibly alter the course of history! I resolved at once that aided by this valuable science I would leave no stone unturned, no garbage can lid unturned, in my quest for truth. Yet, certain thoughts crossed my mind as my career in garbology blossomed. Was I trampling on other people's rights? Was I becoming the very sort of secret police that I had always opposed? Had I earned the epithets people threw at me "snoop" and "sneak'" Was Bob Dylan right when he told me, "A. J., you go through garbage like a pig, man"? I wondered long and hard about this. But history will absolve garbology for it is nothing less than a journalistic technique and, in this post-Watergate world, the public's right to know is far more important than the privacy of a public figure. The ethics of garbology are parallel to the basic ethics of journalism as put forth in the libel laws; if you are a public figure, you are fair game. I only garbanalyze the rich, famous and powerful. It is beneath the dignity of a distinguished garbologist such as myself to dig through the
refuse of just any average bozo. When people ask me, "Hey, A.J., when are you going to analyze my garbage?" l often reply, "Just as soon as you stop being a non-entity." How did I come to garbology? I guess you could trace it back to my early childhood. My father was an Orthodox Jew, however my mother was not. Occasionally she would purchase non-Kosher food items. My father would go through the garbage and read the ingredients on the disgarded packing. Immediately, I fell victim to the garbage stigma. People began automatically to associate the name A. J. Weberman with "Dylan's garbage." Clearly the public did not realize that people who work with garbified or semi-garbified matter should not be made fun of, nor should they be held in low esteem. The fact is, however, that America is starting to wake up to garbage. With many of our natural resources rapidly disappearing, garbage, be it ever so humble, is on its way to becoming a highly valuable commodity. It won't be long before the Commodities Exchange institutes are trading in garbage futures. Garbology is now taught as a course at several universities. REMEMBER: This is the pure garbology. I am just a spy, sticking my nose where it should not be, and engage in garbology as part of my tradecraft. Garbology, the first science of garbage, has elevated the status of trash collecting and related occupations. Garbage men throughout this land are demanding a reappraisal of the profession. The Associated Press reported that when a sanitation man is East Moline, Illinois, was awarded a "Municipal Employee of the Year Award" the City's public works director called him Garbologist of the Year rather than Garbage Collector of the Year. The fact is that the term "garbage collector" is a misnomer anyway. Sanitation workers do not collect garbage; they merely remove it. Only garbologists actually save and catalog it. Distinctions like this are important, and I have used them in an attempt to raise the public consciousness. Surprisingly, the media has been very helpful. Shortly after discovering garbology, the media discovered me. Esquire magazine hired me to do a cover story on garbage. Articles began appearing in Glamour, Ingenue and Rolling Stone. The Associated Press did a feature story that appeared in hundreds of newspapers across the country. I began to develop a nationwide network of garbology "stringers" who sent me local trash. I was imitated by Jack Anderson, Robin Moore, and other journalists. In order to stay ahead of the competition I was forced
to train an associate garbologist Aron Morton Kay (who would later achieve notoriety as the man who throws pies at celebrities Click here to go to the PieMan's WebSite. (Kay's notoriously effective pie "hits" include, among others: Gordon Liddy; E. Howard Hunt; former New York Mayor Abe Beame, Senator Daniel P. Moynihan; and William F. Buckley.) With Special Agent Kay in the field I could devote my time to setting up the National Institute of Garbology, where advanced research and development could be facilitated. The Institute is located at 318 3rd Ave Suite #520, New York City 10010 and is not open to the general public although inquiries are welcome. Some of the most significant garbage on file at the Institute has been scanned and reproduced on this site. Each individual collection of garbage represents months of study and research. But more than that, each is the result of action, sometimes perilous, sometimes hilarious, but always adventurous. BOB DYLAN After recovering from my shock and joy at finding an actual hand-written letter by my favorite poet in the trash can, I pulled myself together and began digging deeper, just barely aware that I was opening up the first chapter of a brand new science. I confess, though, that the overpowering odor of decaying food, raw onions, dirty diapers and dog shit was a strong argument for turning back. Nevertheless, I pushed onward because I knew that "the answer was blowing in the wind." There was so much stuff in that can that Ann and I decided to go back to our Bowery loft and get the car. On the way I wondered out loud if our treasure would be safe on MacDougal Street? Despite the current rash of rip-offs in the West Village, Ann assured me, "It hasn't got so bad that the junkies rip off garbage. Anyway, they don't know what it's worth." Sure enough, when we drove back the garbage was still there and we loaded it into the back seat. My fantasy was that I would find first drafts of Dylan's poetry (Dylan eventually published some stained fast drafts in his book Poetry & Drawings, published by Knopf) or a Rosetta stone that would unlock the secrets of his symbolism. But the reality, as I began sorting through the bags, was a harsh one, especially when I hit a layer ofdisposable diapers. It reminded me that Dylan and his wife Sara had just recently had their fourth
child. I made my way down through a layer of kitchen refuse vegetable cans, Blimpie wrappers, coffee grounds. His eating habits seemed normal enough. No evidence of "brown rice, seaweed or a dirty hot-dog." Underneath the kitchen stuff a new layer came to light composed of rockand-roll magazines. There was Rock, Rolling Stone and even an issue of Crawdaddy which contained an article that I had recently written. I was deeply hurt by this. Why had Dylan insulted me by throwing it away rather than filing it in his "Weberman" file? Further on, I discovered a form letter to the Dylans from the Little Red School House (around the corner on Bleecker Street) thanking parents for contributing to one of the school's funds. Click here to see this and other Dylan garbifacts.
That was nice of Dylan, who is basically a confused, but really nice guy. Next, I stumbled upon a fragment of a fan letter to Dylan from someone in California that read, "...Marie will turn to the wind and ask where heroin is available." Very strange indeed. My next big revelation was that Dylan and I both shopped at the same Grand Union supermarket! A secondlayer of kitchen cast-offs contained the packaging from Grand Union brand sweet butter and Grand Union brand eggs, as well as a Grand Union shopping bag, chicken bones, an empty milk carton, green peas, an empty Balance apple juice bottle, and some balled-up aluminum foil. Dylan's dog, Sasha, was evidently fed a diet of Gainesburgers and Ken-L Ration. And that was literally the bottom of that first barrel. Frankly, I never imagined that I would stoop so low in my quest to understand Bob Dylan, the poet and the man. However, my efforts were immensely fruitful and justified further exploration. After about ten excursions through Dylan's garbage can over a two-week period in September1970, I began to piece together a very clear picture of the person he really is and the life he was living at that time. Essentially, the mythic Bob Dylan romantic, revolutionary, visionary was dispelled forever by thorough garbanalysis. Instead, he was revealed to be a typically upper middle-class family man with very ordinary day-to-day household concerns. From his pail I gathered bills from the vet concerning treatment of Sasha's upset stomach; invitations to Sara to attend private sales at exclusive department stores; dozens of mail-order cosmetic offers; all the high fashion magazines, addressed to Sara; a package from Bloomingdale's addressed to one of Dylan's many pseudonyms, and charged to Sara Dylan's account. I also found a bill from the Book-of-theMonth Club, and a memo to Bob Dylan regarding the upcoming monthly meeting of the MacDougal Street Garden Association. His family life, at that time, seems to have engrossed him totally. There were Polaroid negatives of Dylan's youngest child, one with a maid giving the kid a bottle. I found a color print of one of his older children and a very clear negative of the poet himself giving his kid a bottle.
There was a card from Dylan's mother in Fort Lauderdale wishing a happy birthday to one of the kids: "Darling grandchildren, I miss and love you all very dearly. Hope to see you soon. All our love always, Grandma and Joe." Like everyone else, Dylan probably doesn't visit his mom as often as she'd like. Click here to see this and other Dylan garbifacts.
Apparently, Dylan does not have much regard for his fans. I could tell this from the way he seemed to rip all his fan mail into tiny shreds. Some
quotes from fragments of two different letters: "Thank you for helping me learn to think." "You abomination, you're responsible for my kid growing his hair down his back." The day after Jimi Hendrix died I found a photo of Jimi that somebody had mailed to Dylan. It was ripped to pieces. It seemed pitiful to find a poem from a fan named Harry Stitz, titled "Decency," which had been mailed to Dylan only to end up among the slimy coffee grounds and diaper dung at the bottom of the poet's trashcan. It went, "Let's show the world how things can be/ Why we will fight for decency? Cause we believe all that's fair/ All that's just everywhere." Just for the hell of it, I looked up Harry in the telephone directory and called him up using my Bob Dylan voice. "Hello, Harry, this is Bob, I got your poem, man. I want to use it on my next record." "But, Bob, I thought you only did stuff that was, you know, far out." I said, "Hey, man, my last record had 'Blue Moon' on it. You call that far out?" But nowhere did I find any evidence that Dylan was at all interested in politics, causes, activism or world affairs. And at that time, you'll recall, the war in Vietnam was still raging. Nixon was in office four students had been killed earlier in the year at Kent State and the six o'clock news made it difficult to escape the endless stream of atrocities and injustices. Yet, it seemed to me that Dylan had come a long way from the days when he wrote "Gates of Eden," "Masters of War," and "Blowin' in the Wind." The only remotely political piece of trash I was able to find in his garbage was a poster from upstate New York with a personal note on it from a local folksinger in Woodstock, asking Dylan to please vote in the upcoming election for this particular Democratic county committeeman. It was true, though, that despite the fact that he was a millionaire, Dylan's garbage was not extravagant. There were no empty caviar tins, no drained bottles of rare wines. The typical shopping list for the Dylan household included items such as cookie mix, liverwurst and granola. For those two weeks in September, Dylan's garbage was dynamite. But by October, he got wind of something happening to his trash and began to expurgate his garbage-can. It was only years later that I found out (from Dylan himself) how he knew. It seems that Bob was in the habit of rising early, before the garbage men arrived, to walk his children to school. One morning he picked up an empty wine bottle some bum had left in his doorway and proceeded to dispose of it in the can by the curb. But when he
lifted the lid he discovered that the garbage the maid had tossed there the night before was missing. Later one of Dylan's friends suggested, "lt's Weberman." Said Dylan later, "It crossed my mind that it was you, A.J. But in case it wasn't suppose someone was planning to kidnap one of my childrenI put the house under twenty four hour surveillance." The photographs he obtained from the surveillance must have been pretty funny, but perhaps not to Dylan. Despite my suspicion that Dylan was aware he was being garbanalyzed, I continued my work in the field. The pickings were slim. The only significant find was a prescription from his doctor for a strong muscle relaxant for Dylan. From this I was able to conclude that three years after his mysterious motorcycle accident, Dylan was still feeling the effects. But the effects of my garbological research were also telling on Bob. For three weeks straight his cans were totally dried up. I decided that that was all I was going to get from that mother lode, and set forth to tell the world about garbology. It began with my article in the East Village Other, titled "Dylan's Garbage's Greatest Hits." It became an instant classic and my rifling of Dylan's garbage entered the folklore of rock 'n' roll. From there it was onward and upward on the ladder of media exposure. Rolling Stone produced a cover story on the subject, called "In the Alley with Bob Dylan." Unfortunately for me they let Dylan edit it and as a result I was made to look like a complete idiot. The stories that appeared in Newsweek, Time, Newsday, Ingenue and Glamour were more favorable to my garbological investigation of Dylan than was the one in Rolling Stone, because the other publications are less dependent on the music industry for advertising revenue. Eventually, Esquire jumped on the garbage wagon and commissioned me to do an article on other famous people's garbage. Pretty soon my interest in garbage began to outweigh my fascination with Dylan and I stopped visiting the curb where he lived. Up to this point I had considered myself essentially a Dylanologist. But now I was fully devoted to this new science and became exclusively a garbologist. As my investigations took me further and further afield, the fetid smell of Dylan's trash can faded into memory, lost amid the exotic odors of more recent, more famous garbage from the Upper East Side, Washington, Watergate and Hollywood. DYLAN MAKES THE RIGHT MOVE
I ventured into the poet's slimy pail, one last time as it happened, a climactic event that became known as "The Time Dylan Stomped A.J." Dylan defending his can.
The incident occurred in September, 1971, about three months before the Esquire article appeared. Ann Garcelon, reporter and friend from the Associated Press doing a feature story on garbology wanted to see garbology in action, so we took a cab up to the town house owned by banker David Rockefeller where we picked up a small greasy bag of trash. We took it over to Ann's nearby apartment where garbanalysis revealed nothing more than a few chicken bones. So as not to disappoint the
reporter, I made a date with her for the next day to meet in front of what I considered to be the best garbage can in New York City Dylan's. I can see now, in retrospect that this was sheer idiocy on my part. I should have stayed far away from Dylan's can, because in 1971 I'd started the Dylan Liberation Front (D. L. F.). Its purpose was to remind Dylan about his failure to contribute money or energy to anti-war and civil rights organizations, and his lack of support for political prisoners despite the fact that he'd built his career singing songs about their struggles. Many others, along with myself, were concerned about his refusal at that time to perform at political benefit concerts, the lack of social commitment in his song lyrics and the fact that he owned stock in companies that produced weapons used in Vietnam. Dylan met with me on a number of occasions, but he never seemed to understand. To make our point, the D.L.F. held a party on May 24, 1971, Dylan's thirtieth birthday, right in front of his house on MacDougal Street. About a thousand angry fans were in attendance. Samples of Dylan's garbage were handed out and we presented Bob, in absentia, with a padlocked, concrete-filled, garbologist-proof trash can. Things almost got out of hand, however, when Bob McClain, a provocateur hired by the New York City Red Squad, began messing up Dylan's doorway with fake money and then refused a cop's order to pick it up. Instead, he started inciting the crowd to riot. The cops who were watching the whole thing began to look nervous. I began to look nervous. The crowd started to get nervous. But before anything could happen, my co-host, Abbie Hoffman, was able to calm everybody down, after I told him that the cat was an undercover pig. The Dylan Birthday Party turned into a legendary event. The international press picked it up, and even in Israel, on his first trip to the Holy Land, the Poet was haunted by it. Perhaps the demonstration had the desired effect, though, because a few months later, Bob Dylan showed up and performed at George Harrison's benefit to aid the starving people of Bangladesh. But the D. L. F. did nothing to endear me to Dylan. Just the opposite, in fact. So, although I'd declared publicly, after the Bangladesh Concert, that I'd leave Dylan alone, there I was again in front of his house with the AP reporter and a photographer digging through his trash can. I pulled out a crate that had held Israeli oranges, a bag of dirty diapers, and an unsmoked cigar. I was posing with my finds, but as the photographer focused, I heard the door behind me open. The camera clicked just as I
heard someone scream, "Get the hell out of my garbage! You filthy animal! I can't throw anything away anymore without you pawing through it!" IT WAS SARA DYLAN. She went after Ann, scratching at her face, then attacked the photographer (a sixty-year-old wire service veteran). I tried reasoning with Sara. "If you get so upset about me taking your garbage," l said, "why do you throw it away?" This only pushed her into a greater fury. It was like trying to talk integration to a lynch mob. "Give me that camera or I'll put you in the hospital," she threatened. I urged the photographer to get a picture quick. "She's a nut," I said. But the reporter and photographer were halfway down the block. "You garbage-picker," said Sara, "You're filth compared to Bob." She walked off into the house. On my way home my conscience began to bother me. Why had I gone back to Dylan's garbage? Could it be that I was hopelessly addicted to his junk? Was I hopelessly addicted to publicity? I tried to call up Sara to apologize and left a message with her secretary. That afternoon I was walking down Elizabeth Street with my head bowed down to my shoes trying to figure out where I was really at, when I heard a bicycle stop a few feet in back of me. I thought nothing of it. Then, seemingly out of nowhere, an arm clasped around my neck. I wrenched it loose, turned around and saw it was Bob Dylan, my former idol, the man who'd written all the symbolist poetry I meticulously studied. My thoughts were interrupted by a punch in the head. Could this actually be happening or was it a bad dream? Perhaps it was a combination of both. I didn't fight back. Instead I tried to calm Dylan down and block his punches. But he was having too much fun to stop. He threw me down on the ground and he began to knock my head against the pavement. Finally some local freaks pulled Dylan off. We both got up and I was speechless. Dylan ripped the D.L.F. button from my shirt, got on his bicycle and rode off into the sunset. I stood there for several seconds trying to figure out why Dylan didn't use karate on me. "Maybe that story about his taking lessons from the Jewish Defense League is a lie?" l wondered. The next moment I picked up an empty wine bottle and started running after Dylan. Seconds later I spotted him on his bike, waiting for a light. I sneaked up behind him and was ready to let him have it with the bottle, Brooklyn-style, but couldn't do it. Dylan was right. I shouldn't have messed with his junk. So I slunk back to the
scene of the crime. A Bowery bum who'd witnessed the entire episode shamed up to me and asked, "Did he get much money?" I told him, "Man, that's was BOB DYLAN, he doesn't have to roll hippies on the Bowery." Seven years later Dylan remained obsessed by his victory. In Street Legal Dylan wrote: "There's a neon light ablaze in this green smoky haze/ Laughter down on Elizabeth Street/And a lonesome bell tuned in that valley of stone/ As he bathed in a l stream of pure white heat/it felt out of place with my foot in his face/ But he should have stayed where his money was clean!!" A lot of insanity went down in front of those cans that year. As Bob put it, during one of the frequent meetings we had prior to the Birthday Party, "You know, Al, you started a fad. That's right. All these college kids come down to steal my garbage. Fraternity types. You wouldn't like these kids, either. Dylan referred to garbology in a phone conversation which I recorded: "Al, you know a lot of people want to hurt you after that garbage thing.... It's not my garbage, anyway it all gets mixed together in my building. You shouldn't go through garbage like a pig, man, that puts you in the same class with the government phone-tappers . . . you do a lot of things that aren't on the up and up . . . you don't fight pigs, man, you fight to go through my garbage." Although I haven't been near Dylan's cans in years, Special Agent Aron Kay went through it about 14 years ago (without prior clearance from headquarters). Aron was actually able to come up with an unfinished poem and a few other goodies. Here is what Special Agent Kay found. But now that Dylan has broken up with Sara, and moved out of the Village to Malibu, things just "ain't the same." Dylan has installed a cyclone fence and guard towers to foil garbological attempts on his trash.
JAKOB DYLANOLOGY Now many a year has past and gone, but there's one for certain, Bob Dylan still hates my guts!! If his hate needs rekindling he will find it my analysis of this son Jakob's poetry, for I have determined that the same black line that was drawn on Bob Dylan was drawn on Jakob Dylan, and that black line is that of heroin addict. Am I destined to be a study in bad taste, (first I call the father a junkie then I call the kid a junkie) or, like the cosmic umpire, do I just calls them like I sees them? Jakob's apparent addiction to heroin is one consequence of Bob Dylan's drug use that he did not think about and if I had a son who was using hard drugs, I would be very upset about it. Dylan should have walked the straight and narrow and not messed with heroin or any white powder for that matter. Jakob Dylan would have been better off as a result. The world would have been a better place, although, a lot of great poems would never have been created such as Please Mrs. Henry and Million Dollar Bash etc. Should William Blake have been busted for using opium? Dylan Thomas for alcohol? Who the fuck knows? Why even ask me? Leave me the fuck alone. FORMER ATTORNEY GENERAL JOHN MITCHELL Watergate afforded endless opportunities for investigative reporting directed at the people who run America and the kinds of corruption with which the government is widely riddled. I became keenly interested in the political garbage uncovered during Watergate. I decided to uncover some of it myself. I was particularly interested in obtaining the trash of John Mitchell. A New York lawyer, Mitchell had been appointed Attorney General by his friend Richard Nixon in 1968. For over four years as Attorney General he was the head of the Justice Department, and as such he was in charge of the FBI, the nation's elite corps of pseudo-garbologists. I thought it was about time to turn the tables on Mitchell. On the other hand, Martha, Mitchell's wife, was another matter. Before the whole scandal broke, Martha declared that something was rotten in the Nixon Administration. In other words, she had the dirt that I was after. Being one of the few who never got a phone call from Martha, I would have to resort to other means.
In August 1973, when John Mitchell had resigned from office and was testifying before the House, the Mitchells were living together at 1040 Fifth Avenue. The House Committee was investigating the Watergate scandal and the media had Mitchell's building (which was across the street from the handy camouflage of Central Park) staked out during most of the day and night. The place had the standard snooty doorman. The snooty trash was piled on the inside of the building near the service entrance. Numerous reconnaissance missions revealed that the garbage was there only for a few brief minutes each day, between 7:46 and 7:52 A.M. On a hot summer morning I took the subway uptown and arrived on target at precisely 7:30. I stood across the street, pretending to be waiting for a bus, while I watched the building superintendent stack about fifty green bags in a neat pile. When he'd finished, I walked over and very casually began making tiny incisions in each bag with a pocketknife in order to facilitate identification. At last, I hit pay dirt; it was a piece of junk mail addressed to John Mitchell. Working fast now, I whipped a spare liner out of my pocket, poured the Mitchell Muck into it, filled their trash liner with nearby garbage and returned it to the same place in the pile. I was determined that what had happened with Dylan would not repeat itself. No longer would my quarry find out he was being garbanalyzed. This time there was going to be a lot of garbage for me to look at. John Mitchell, ex-Attorney General, was going to be garbanalyzed to the fullest capabilities of state-of-the-art garbological technology. I took the subway home during the early morning rush hour. People must have wondered why I was taking a bag of garbage presumably to work but no one said a thing, which doesn't surprise me, considering that they were firmly convinced I was a psychotic who could "flip out" dangerously at any moment. The garbage belonged almost exclusively to Martha. (It is interesting to note that the Mitchells had separate garbage.) It even had a sample of her bleached-blonde hair along with many Salem cigarette butts with lipstick prints on them I examined these stains with a micrometer and verified the widespread belief that Martha had one of the biggest mouths in America.
Many of the butts were smoked only halfway and there were hundreds of them scattered about, along with empty Salem packs and cartons. There was a seven-dollar price tag from a new pair of size thirty-two medium panties Martha had recently purchased, which read, "OlgaThe First Lady of Underfashions." Martha drank Tanqueray imported English gin, with Schweppes tonic, and Canada Dry ginger ale. I came across several pages of handwritten numbers (a score sheet from some parlor game), Dole pineapple cans, Lady Scott toilet paper and toilet bowl deodorant. Martha's mail included a questionnaire from Time magazine and a letter from the Women's National Republican Club. All in all, the kind of boring garbage characteristic of women who spend a lot of time at home. I went back next morning and found an entire box full of trash that the former Attorney General had covered with five copies of the Washington Post addressed to his neighbor, Kennedy-clan member Stephen Smith. John had the New York Times delivered each day, and bought the Daily News and the New York Post at the newsstand. Many of the articles in these newspapers concerned Mitchell, although very few were cut up. It didn't look like he was keeping a scrap book. I also found four empty bottles two Dewar's Scotch, one Ballantine Scotch and another Smirnoff's vodka. During the Watergate Hearings, John Ehrlichman testified that Mitchell was in a bad state of health and was drinking heavily. Here was the evidence. The remains of a Mitchell meal were scattered about several empty cans of Campbell's soup, some milk cartons, Campbell's franks and beans, chicken bones, Baskin-Robbins ice cream, Coke bottles and SevenUp cans. His preference was apparently for junk food. Next came the good stuff letters and plenty of them! Mitchell had had to give his address on National Television so he received a good deal of mail. One letter read, "If I had my way the lot of you would be stood against the wall. If I live long enough, I'm going to see it." Another one asked, "All the lawyers we saw on TV were gay. Are you?" All of these letters and postcards had been ripped to shreds and some of the pieces had been withheld from garbification. Only two of them were intact. One read "Just for the record I believe Richard Nixon knew about the Watergate cover-up and also that worry has helped to make him ill. I'm one of Martha's greatest admirers. She would never lie. Ha! Ha! Ha!" The other was written over John's picture as published in a small-town Florida newspaper: "You're a damned criminal may you end up in the penitentiary."
There were three favorable letters in Mitchell's load; one of them came from a small farm in Nebraska. It was nearly illegible and quite illiterate, but after deciphering, it read: "Please stand on tesmony [sic] i look at that mess evey [sic] day. the cross fire you all you all Masson 33 Degree put it to them Make Evey [sic] one pay bige [sic] fine all so John Deen [sic] put a start to it Make you 3 man all pay a fib poor presse dint...." The letter also contained a few pages of literature from the Reverend Gerald L. K. Smith, an antiSemitic right-wing preacher, which was carefully underlined for the former Attorney General's enlightenment. Such were his supporters. Another positive letter came in the form of a reprint of an article about the danger of a United Nations Treaty for peaceful use of the world's sea beds. The man who mailed it to Mitchell had written, "This is considerably more dangerous than Watergate." The last fan letter came from someone who claimed to be a college student who wanted counseling from former President Nixon's ex-law partner: "A man with your experience and knowledge would be able to offer some valuable advice to me." By my count, Mitchell's mail was running against him two to one! Even his junk mail seemed to be slanted against him; someone sent him a booklet of career opportunities from the LaSalle Extension School a handy thing to have around when you're facing disbarment! Another anonymous citizen had put Martha on a mailing list for custom-made closets. I always suspected she was a closet liberal. Despite Watergate, John and Martha were still in the good graces of the Nixon administration as garbanalytic technique promptly confirmed. Aside from numerous envelopes with CREEP's (Committee to Re-elect the President) return address on them, there was an engraved invitation from Secretary of State William Rogers inviting them to "assist in the display of our heritage of American design and decorative arts" by contributing at least $250 to the State Department's Americana Fund. This l would help further Roger's noble ambition of furnishing his Agency's Diplomatic Reception Room with such trinkets as "six Chinese Export Porcelain Plates," cost, ten thousand dollars apiece. The most interesting papers in the pile were the clippings Mitchell was studying on possible illegal fund-raising practices by the McGovernites.
Many of these had revealing hand-written notes and underlining on them. The former head of the Nixon campaign may have decided that the best defense of the charge of shaking down corporations for campaign contributions was, "McGovern did the same thing." This strategy may have been formulated in the White House; the clippings had arrived in CREEP envelopes and three of them had been previously forwarded to De Van Shumway, the head of CREEP, by the Congressional Record Clipping Service, before Mitchell received them. Nixon maintained tight control over CREEP up until his resignation. One series of clippings alleged that McGovern shook down Protestant Churches for political funds. Click here to see this clipping.
This was followed by a Washington Post article headlined "1972 McGovern Units Broke Election Law," in which the following was underlined: "McGovern . . . had 750 committees and no formal procedure authorizing
them to raise money." McGovern's campaign treasurer reported there were verbal understandings." "McGovern's spokesman said, 'Most of campaign committees did appear to lack written authorization from candidates and failed to state so in their literature."' Stapled to the back of this was another Washington Post clipping, titled "McGovern Excels at Money Tree," in which the following was underlined: "Mailings have produced $500,000.00 at a cost of about $100,000. By March '72 they project a total of two million." The series ended with a reprint from a letter to the editor of the Washington Post which contended that McGovern's image of "Prairie Populist" was phony, citing George's plush, Japanese-style residence in Washington, D.C. as an example of his supposed hypocrisy. Scrawled on top of the page in John's shaky handwriting was the question, "How much of this came from Church Shakedown?" It looked as if Mitchell was trying to construct a case that McGovern's campaign committee shook down churches and broke the election law, managing to collect millions of dollarssome of which McGovern supposedly funneled into his expensive home. The Palestinian terrorists supplied the documentation for Mitchell's next set of allegations against McGovern. This series of papers began with a Xerox copy of an Evans and Novak column about McGovern's switch to a strong pro-Israeli line. Click here to see this.
Because it was recovered among the other papers which I just described, and because Mitchell's notations appear on it, it can be safely suggested that he was contemplating accusing McGovern of receiving secret funds from American Zionists. Mitchell scribbled on the top of the page (although it's blurred, I think it reads), "Nixon condemns use of arms to agrees," which may indicate Mitchell's reasoning that something "fishy" was happening when McGovern took a more pro-lsraeli stance than Nixon. On the upper left of this syndicated column Mitchell reminded himself, "This is
a new proposition see Palestinian Arab Delegation." The first page of the delegation's document is reproduced. Click here. I noticed how he carefully underlined their statements.
In the other pages of this release the Arab delegation went on to praise Nixon for his visits to Moscow and Peking: "Peace with Honor" and his "defying International Zionist-Jew leaders by filling the United States Supreme Court with independent and able Justices concerned about the Constitution and welfare of the people."
The last series of "defense" clippings concerned the use of electronic surveillance by the Democrats. There was an old Jack Anderson column in which Mitchell underlined a description of how the Watergate prosecutors wanted to wire John Dean for sound and send him back to the White House to record his conversations with Haldeman and Ehrlichman. (Dean refused.) Mitchell also marked an excerpt from the Congressional Record which claimed that bugging the telephones of high officials had been an accepted form of security check during previous administrations. There was a fragment of another Jack Anderson column talking about Nixon and Watergate, and an article on John Dean in which such lines as, "The sheer sleaziness Dean revealed in his run for cover," were underlined. Mixed in were articles on various railroads stapled to a hand-written report on the advisability of buying stock in them. Other goodies included a piece of paper with a doodle that seemed to be a self-portrait; a list of Watergate civil suit depositions on file in the CREEP library; a news photo of Mitchell next to one of Maurice Stans in which they both had the same expression on their face and looked alike; a torn up legal-size yellow sheet of paper headed, "June 25, 1972," in John's hand with nothing else on it and a mysterious note reading, "Rollie re Swabachee $." Click here to see this and other Mitchell garbifacts.
I also found a small scrap of Mitchell’s most intimate notes on the Watergate affair. When I was on a television show hosted by Martha Mitchell she told me that she insisted that her husband threw away his important papers a little at a time to thwart souvenir seekers. Martha insisted that I couldn't have got her garbage and brought a sample of it along with her to compare with her garb-art portrait. If the garbage hadn't matched up I would have been ruined. But the trash was almost identical and Martha had to admit I had snatched her slops. Perhaps the most historically significant piece of trash was a manila envelope from the United States Senate Select Committee on Presidential Campaign Activities which bore the signature of Sam Ervin Jr., in place of a postage stamp. It probably contained his subpoena to testify before the Watergate Committee! Although I didn't recover any evidence of Mitchell's attempted silencing of Martha broken phones or crazy glue lipstick I did retrieve some of John's "dirt" from the bottom of his bag. This was most likely the exact same "dirt" Martha said John was involved in prior to Watergate. You can see it in the lower left hand corner of John's garb-art portrait. Martha Mitchell died of cancer in 1976. Unlike John, Martha was a decent human being who told the truth regardless of the consequences. The FBl's snooping produced more than 3,000 pages of documents on her! More garbage than I will ever collect! This researcher and Martha during their first and only meeting:
Garbart sculpture of John Mitchell:
A detail from this garbart portrait:
Garbart sculpture of Martha Mitchell:
BELLA ABZUG Bella Abzug lost her most recent bid for Congress in 1978, but for a long time, "Battling Bella" was one of the most influential women in the country. She's always been on the left side of the political scene, coming out of the labor movement tradition, leading the Women's Strike for Peace against the Vietnam War and working hard for good social legislation regarding the rights of minorities and women. For these reasons I've always respected Bella. But nobody in the public eye is immune to garbology. That's why I started to focus on Bella's barrel. But there were problems right from the start.
Ten years of garbological experience has brought me to the conclusion that America's greatest garbanoids are feminists. Take the case of Kate Millet, author of Sexual Politics, who happens to live near the old National Institute of Garbology. I spent three years trying to find her heap and the closest I've come to it was some unidentifiable trash with paper plates in it. I have also been unable to obtain Ms. magazine founder Gloria Steinem's slops despite repeated pre-dawn raids on her can. The National Institute of Garbology has devised several methods designed to cure garbanoia. One of them is "daily garbological profiling" Non-Stop De-Garbification! Sooner or later the garbage will turn up! Bella was exposed to this sort of scrutiny for about one month. Around the time of the 1972 congressional elections, something turned upa small paper bag on the bottom of the barrel which I eagerly scraped up. Having been strung out for Bella's junk for nearly a month I had to eyeball some of it immediately. I discovered much to my dismay, that it was a man's garbage cardboard stiffeners from professionally laundered shirts, containers from food that required little in the way of preparation, a tube from an expensive cigar. There was also a series of memos from C. B. Richard Securities Incorporated, which confirmed my suspicions that much of the trash belonged to Bella's husband, Martin the stockbroker. The rest consisted of a bulletin from a drug plasma plant, a luggage catalogue, a Gas and Electric bill for $22.76, a note on a sheet of yellow, legal-sized paper that read, "Katy Industry (pfd) 36 3/4," and some football slips from the office. He also had some duplicate receipts from a local pharmacy for items like Listerine mouthwash (she's got a big mouth) and Miltown tranquilizers (she's very excitable). There were notes reading, "Monday Lamstons [a local five and ten cent store] buy 2 pillow cases"; "Clean my suit"; "Sat-Detroit"; "Sunday-Cincinatti"; "Satsee Bella in morning/ Peter Weiss re: Dellums Viet platform. " Aha, leftwing peacenik political garbage! There was some of the Abzugs' son's stuff in the trasha bulletin from Hunter College and a request for money from the Center for the Study of Democratic Institutions. Their daughter Eve was represented - an unpaid bill from Boston University. Finally I got down to the part of the trash that instantly triggered the muck alarm in my brain: an annual report addressed
to her from Litton Industries and an IBM card from American Machine Foundries Incorporated with her name and account number printed on it. Both these giant conglomerates specialize in producing complex weapons systems for the United States military. Click here to see these garbifacts from Bella's Barrel.
Bella had made a political career out of opposing the war in Vietnam and had been instrumental in winning the votes of the liberal constituency of her congressional district. Shortly after her election to Congress the Republican-dominated state legislature gerrymandered her district out of existence. The political mugging only made Bella more popular with New York City's voters, and her election was virtually assured in the congressional race. I was in a unique position. Here the election was just a week away and I was in possession of political dynamite. I'd uncovered the fact that Bella Abzug owned war stock. Since I am always willing to give people like Bella the benefit of the doubt I called her office and asked them to read me a list of the stocks she owned. The gentleman informed me she had shares in a shoe factory, a cement
plant, etc. but he didn't say a word about Litton Industries or AMF. It looked like a cover-up to me. I made a crucial decision. Much as I liked Bella and everything she stood for, I cannot tolerate hypocrisy. I was angry. I felt lied to, cheated, ripped off, bamboozled. And what about her constituents, the people who believed in Bella, who voted for her because they hated the damned war and wanted it stopped? A bunch of chumps! So I held a press conference the day before the election. The response to it was generally along political lines the conservative Daily News interviewed me and took my picture while the liberal CBS-TV news people wouldn't touch the story, accusing me of working for Nixon. Middle-of-the road WNEW-TV News sent a film crew to my press conference and gave the story a lot of play. The teaser before the news that night promised: "Garbage researcher finds evidence of war stock ownership in Bella Abzug's trash, 'Interview with Muhammed Ali'. Next on the Ten O’clock Nightly News." That night both the TV and radio news reports featured stories along these lines. "A. J. Weberman, the man who spends a lot of his time studying the contents of people's garbage, came up with some startling papers in congressional hopeful Bella Abzug's trash." (Cut to shot of me lifting the lid off Bella's barrel.) The reporter pointed his microphone at me and I told him all I knew, after which the film switched to some shots of Bella doing some last minute campaigning. The reporter explained, "We confronted Ms. Abzug with these charges while she mingled with voters in Upper Manhattan." The film cut to Bella. "The stock is owned jointly by myself and my husband. It's wrong to profit from this dirty war. I guess you can't hide anything anymore and you can't win them all." The Litton Stock was in both their names, but the AMF was in hers only. The evidence I presented was overwhelming. Bella held a press conference. Her public relations man had to admit, "We don't know what stocks she owns anymore." The Associated Press carried the story and the American public's garbage consciousness was raised a couple of notches; people were beginning to get an inkling of just how powerful garbage really is. It nearly altered the course of a congressional election. After the Abzug incident it seemed like there were a lot more ads for shredders in the dailies. More and more cases of acute garbanoia started to appear along my route of Upper East Side garbage cans. My muckraking had precipitated the great garbage drought of 1973; it was as if I was
lurking behind the garbage can of every notable in New York. Celebrity trash became extremely scarce, and I was almost out of business. The FBI wasn't too happy about this turn of events. Not only did I raise the level of garbanoia among liberal politicians who have often been the victims of official snoopery, but I beat the FBI out of a juicy bit of trash. When the FBI had the late High Times magazine magnate Tom Forcade in custody on a trumped-up bombing charge after the Democratic and Republican National Conventions in Miami Beach, they asked him, "Where did Weberman really get that information on Bella?" This was particularly galling in light of a Presidential directive, issued at about that time through the then Bureau Chief, L. Patrick Gray, ordering agents to first gather and then disseminate as much embarrassing material of a personal nature on as many of the names on the Nixon "Enemy List" as possible. I bet Mr. Abzug wasn't too happy about this affair, either. Bella must have been waiting for him with a rolling pin after she found out he threw away her private papers. JUDGE JOHN SIRICA Who will ever forget the hanging judge of Watergate, John J. Sirica? Special Agent Aron Kay was assigned to his case, and in a matter of days we had judge junk all over our Washington, D.C., field office. I examined it and found it to be some of the most revealing trash ever! Agent Kay got a promotion and he is now Special Agent In Charge of the Brooklyn Office of the National Institute of Garbology. I got a glimpse into the life of a pivotal figure in contemporary American history. The judge's garbified matter contained hundreds of Trident sugarless gum wrappers some of which still had gum in them. This gum correlated with the sugar-free cola cans and wrappers from disposable syringes. Either the judge or someone in his family is diabetic even the most cynical I among us were inclined to give the judge the benefit of the doubt we simply did not believe that these syringes were used for any other purpose than the above-mentioned. Later we were advised that it is his wife who suffers that disorder. Further painstaking investigation lead to the identification of the judge's particular physical malfunction, which, in turn, explained the presence of traces of stewed prunes and bran flakes. Having isolated certain rather fundamental characterological aspects through the
rudimentary application of garbanalysis to the principal, we wondered to what extent the thus uncovered judicial "irregularity" played a role in maximum sentences, often meted out with a kind of angry expulsiveness? There were slightly garbified law books (he was about to retire), a picture of his wife in a broken frame, a half-gallon whiskey bottle and numerous notes detailing the judge's finances. In 1969 Sirica owned small amounts of stock in United States Steel, Alpha Portland, U.S. Freight, American Telephone and Telegraph, Greyhound, Braniff, Columbia Gas and Bud and Hormel. He also had about sixteen thousand dollars in the Perpetual Savings Bank, fifteen thousand in National Permanent, seven thousand in Security Savings and seven thousand in Jefferson Savings, as well as three thousand in a checking account. By 1971 he'd switched all but one of his savings accounts to different banks, perhaps in order to avoid a conflict of interest. That year he collected $2,750 in interest. In 1973 Judge Sirica sold his blue-chip stocks and put his money into the hands of Bache and Company, the investment bankers. He received $6,561 in dividends from them that year. So he was doing all right, even as the fortunes of the "Waterbuggers" were nose diving. We had caught Judge Sirica in the midst of preparing his tax returns. Notes saying "double check" were everywhere, and he'd even ordered a copy of the tax laws. He's obviously a meticulous, conscientious man. The Siricas had income from various sources, including a substantial Trust (January receipts: $3,950), yet they lived rather modestly on very ordinary fare, such as fried chicken, canned tuna, Lipton soup and other plain meals. Further analysis indicated (by the numerous empty laundry and cleaning products) a considerable concern with cleanliness as well as close family ties, evidenced by the large amount of their son and daughter's trash, which shared the same receptacles. A brief but intriguing note may have indicated a hidden prejudice against the Watergate defendants. Presumably in the judge's handwriting, the note read: "Remove many little Dr. S's, but it may increase the chances of the all-powerful Dr. S." Was he saying, "I got rid of Nixon's subordinates but this may only help Dr. Strangelove himself get off the hook?" Click here to see a garbart sculpture of the late Judge Sirica made from the judge's sludge.
JACKIE KENNEDY Studying Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis was a national pastime for the American people. Every day millions of women dreamt about Jackie, their fantasies reinforced by numerous newspaper and magazine accounts of her every glamorous movement. American paparazzi Ron Galella, made a career out of photographing her. I was determined to go beyond Galella, by garbanalyzing her. Copping J.O.'s junk was no easy task. Two servants had once been fired for selling Jackie's panties for a thousand dollars each, and I was sure she suffered from chronic garbanoia. Jackie's junk was kept behind iron bars at 1040 Fifth Avenue until the trash man is about to arrive, so I had to get up at the crack of dawn and face twenty bags of trash, only one of which belonged to Jackie. While I was slitting each bag with the razor blade I had brought along, an old lady who lived on the ground floor of Jackie's building spotted me. She called the
superintendent who wanted to know what the hell I was doing. "Hey, fella," I barked with obvious annoyance, "you think I want to go through this junk? I have to do it for my ecology class." Fifteen slits later I knew I had hit pay dirt when I saw a letter from the Hyannisport Yacht Club addressed to Mrs. A. Onassis. Near this unopened envelope was another reminder that I was garbanalyzing a former First Ladya bag from a pharmacy with the label reading "Mrs. Whitehouse, 1040 Fifth Avenue," an obvious code to avoid her being openly identified with who-knows-what secret medication. There were two Brut Champagne bottles (Vintage 1966) and one Cole De Beaune Villages bottle (Vintage 1969). Typically, there were empty perfume bottles Estee Lauder Sport Fragrance Spray, perfumed lavender bath scent, a refillable spray container of Chanel No. 5 and an Avon Fashion Figurine that once held Field Flowers Cologne. There was dental floss, toothpaste and five empty packs of Ambassador cigarettes; Wella Care herbal shampoo, Instant Quaker cereal, Melba toast, etc., etc. I also found one of her famous leather gloves, plastic wrappers from pantyhose, a perfectly good scarf and two pairs of Jackie's pantyhose, one of which I am wearing proudly at this very moment as I type this chapter. I also found some ribbons with "Happy 13th, John"and "Sweet Sixteen, Caroline" written on them in glitter along with a piece of stationery with John Kennedy, Jr. printed on the bottom of it. There was a wrapper from a famous European jeweler, marked "To Mr. Onassis" and another marked "To John." Jackie's maid's trash was deposited right beside Jackie's ownin true egalitarian fashion. The most significant finding among her maid's mess was a receipt bearing Jackie's personal telephone number. In light of Jackie's death, this garbage is worth a fortune now!!!! Jackie's Junk.
ROY M. COHN Roy M. Cohn was perhaps best known for his role as chief counsel in the Army/McCarthy Hearings. In the years since these hearings, Cohn was tried and acquitted three times on charges, which included bribery, fraud, conspiracy and obstruction of justice. Cohn represented many reputed mob figures, as well as celebrities such as the late Steve Rubell, co-owner of Studio 54 in New York. Cohn was a respected member of New York City's Conservative Party. He lived in a townhouse on the Upper East Side. It was extremely difficult to get Cohn's garbage during the Great Garbage Drought of 1973. The only trash near his Manhattan townhouse belonged to a physician who lived one door down. I came back again and again and again. My foremost virtue was persistence.
When I failed to find it after 18 nocturnal visits, I stationed myself there one morning at 8 A.M. and put the garbage men under surveillance. I was waiting for someone to dart out of Cohn's building and hand the precious leftovers directly to them. Nothing even remotely like this happened, and I decided Roy M. Cohn was one of America's most tenacious garbanoids. People of his ilk, however, are no match for the awesome resources of the National Institute of Garbology and, as such, I resolved to redouble my surveillance procedures. Unfortunately a lady who lived across the street spotted me and she threatened to turn me over to the police, thus inspiring me to undertake a premature, though temporary, retreat. The next night when I returned, Cohn came to his window and, with quiet determination watched me go about my nefarious business. So alerted, I pretended to be a junkie looking for drugs in the doctor's garbage. A week later I discovered an empty trash barrel outside the Cohn residence. It was a start . . . perhaps an omen that the drought was ending. It was empty for two weeks. If I had allowed myself to grow dispirited, you wouldn't be reading this chapter now. Instead I continued my relentless pursuit and soon was rewarded with five bags of trash. As we were driving away with the garbage I began to examine it. The first thing I found was a legal motion with the name of Carlo Gambino, a famous gangster, on it. "Turn around, man, I got the wrong garbage," I yelled to Aron. "This is Mafia trash, I want to return it. It's a big mistake." But then I pulled a letterhead out and realized that this was office trash. He works out of the same building he lives in.The Mafioso was one of his clients. Click here to see Cohn's overall trash heap.
Back at the Institute, the incredible volume of trash presented a slight problem. But I went through all of it, piece by piece, to make sure that Roy was prosecuted to the fullest extent of garbological law! I'm sure if he had been in my place he would have wanted it that way. I found some very substantial muck. One letter was addressed to John S. Schlesinger, owner of the Schlesinger Corporation, an ITT-like, multimillion-dollar Conglomerate in South Africa. Click here to see this document from Roy's rubble.
The "Sam" in the letter is Sam DiFalco, a Manhattan Criminal Court judge whose son, Tony, was an ambitious city councilman from the Lower East Side. At the time this letter was written Tony DiFalco was running for City Council president. When Roy wrote, "They would never want to embarrass you by asking directly," is he implying that Tony and Sam had asked him to drop a hint about making a contribution and that it would be all handled discreetly, behind the scenes? Cohn then went on to imply that if the South African magnate were to make the check out to "Friends of Tony DiFalco" (Cohn himself?), "I will get it to him." The fact that the check was sent to Cohn first, rather than to the DiFalco campaign fund, made me wonder if money laundering was involved. The reasons for this alleged laundering might have been to circumvent the law. Campaign contributions by foreigners are
strictly illegal! Tony's Third World constituents might also be offended if they found out their candidate was being financed by South African interests. A Grand Jury should have looked into this. After all, Cohn took a strong stand against the Communist Party of the United States for allegedly receiving funds from Moscow. Now it seemed as though the shoe was on the other foot. Cohn's garbage also contained a letter to conservative columnist William Buckley in which he accused the Ervin Committee of "using third-hand hearsay to smear people." Joe McCarthy's chief counsel, complaining about "smear tactics"? The last part of this letter dealt with the status of Roy's yacht, the Defiance, which had been seized by Jamaicans as salvage after it ran out of fuel. Cohn hoped to have it returned to him, if "the boat isn't nationalized by the Jamaican government, with the approval of the State Department, because of my dangerous political tendencies." In January 1974, Newsweek magazine reported that the Defiance caught fire and sank after someone phoned in a tip to the authorities that the yacht "would be taken out and scuttled for insurance." The captain of the yacht, who had a long prison record, was killed in the fire, and there was speculation about possible narcotics violations and fraud. Cohn told Newsweek, "I never owned the boat, I never had an interest in it." But his garbage told a different tale. Next to the Buckley letter lay some very revealing documents concerning a suit Cohn's ex-wife filed against him in an attempt to get alimony. One was Roy's deposition wherein he stated, "She is trying to financially punish the plaintiff in his justified action by dragging out these proceedings for her own personal gratification." He also swore that her millionaire father, whom Roy used to represent, was supporting her. This piece of muck was especially interesting in light of rumors (never proven) that Cohn was a homosexual, pedophile, and died of AIDS; his "secret" marriage evidently lasted only a few months. The rest of the wastepaper consisted of legal briefs. In one of them Roy asked a judge to suppress some evidence on the grounds of a technically illegal wiretap in an extortion case. The man he was defending is known as the Garbage Czar of Yonkers. In another brief he claimed that a Daily
News article about the alleged racketeer had "poisoned" the minds of the jury! Far be it from Joe McCarthy's former henchman to try to convict somebody via the media. There was also a motion for a new deportation hearing for a member of New York's most powerful crime family. Cohn obviously saw no contradiction in espousing law and order while helping gangsters stay on the street by getting them off on technicalities. Many conservative organizations use Cohn as a lawyer. There were letters from the American Jewish League Against Communism, Ad Hoc Committee In Defense of Life and the Committee of Catholic Laymen. About seventy hand-written notes from Cohn's secretary were intermixed with these letters. Here's a sample of their contents: "Your mother called to make sure you got back safely." (Cohn lived with his mother until her death.) "Bunny George fatal OD." "Porno donations lawyers fees " Some were in Cohn's handwriting: "3 expert witnesses prepared to testify." "See US Attorney 9:30." Some had his doodling on them. The garbafacts from Roy Cohn's garbage:
I found some papers that were ripped to shreds. When people do this I know they are trying to hide something; so I piece such shreds together no matter how long it takes me. I spent three hours assembling a tax return from his office manager (whose income, according to certain trash, was fifteen thousand dollars a year), another tax return for his secretary's mother, and a letter from one of Cohn's associates to the publisher of the National Review inquiring why the Concerned Alumni of Princeton have cashed his check, but have not as yet signed the agreement he included with it in regard to how the money was to be used. All in all, the counselor's trash was a most telling pile. GLORIA VANDERBILT'S GARBAGE The name Vanderbilt is synonymous with wealth. Gloria's greatgrandfather, Cornelius, was known as America's first robber baron, a man who monopolized the railroad industry. Gloria, on the other hand, has the reputation of being politically liberal, and made a fortune of her own selling personally designed blue jeans. When I arrived at 45 East 67 Street, I found that an Iron Gate separated me from the rubbish. "Maybe I better try another approach," I mused. I rang the bell and the maid answered. "I was sent here by General Compactor Company. We have an order for a built-in trash masher from a Mr. Cooper (Gloria's present husband) at this address and I'm supposed to take a look at the kitchen before we install it." If she had let me in, I'd have added, "one more thing, I need a sample of all the garbage in this house to adjust the pressure at the factory." Alas, she wouldn't open the door. Next, I questioned all the doormen on her block about when the Garbageman Cometh, but I couldn't get a straight answer from any of them. A week later I returned to Gloria's garbage along with a Canadian television film crew. We'd just been to Dustin Hoffman's empty cans and were on our way downtown feeling pretty depressed when we passed her block. "Stop! There is Gloria Vanderbilt's can!" l shouted at the driver. We screeched to a halt. I went downstairs to where the garbage was locked up. I stared at it for a moment, and the next thing I knew I'd kicked the metal gate in the right place and it opened! Would the cops catch me and book me for possession of stolen garbage? I was past caring. I ran into the basement, grabbed the garbage and split. Out of the corner of my eye I saw all kinds of power tools, garden implements and the like, just asking to be stolen.
And all I took was the garbage. "Where is this garbology business getting me anyway?" I wondered. I ran to the car with the trash and shouted, "Let's get out of here." "No," said the reporter, "we want some footage." So at great risk, I ran through it again. The things I do for media exposure! Back at the National Institute of Garbology I started pouring through the results of the caper and found some gems that made it well worth the risk. This was classy trash. Plenty of orange peels, House And Garden (required reading); empty Schrafft's ice cream containers; T-bone steak left-overs; a price tag for $160 marked down to $130; a Bonwit Teller catalogue which listed such items as "a black and white pin dot dress with fake flower" for only $850. Further garbanalysis revealed that Gloria drank Maxwell House coffee, smoked Vantage cigarettes, watched her weight with plenty of yogurt, and labored under the delusion that she was a painter. Her career as an artist manifested itself in a note she'd written to one of her servants to "take the paints and brushes to the studio," and in an invitation she received to attend a showing of paintings in Palm Beach. Her garbage is much more beautiful, in my opinion, than her paintings could ever be. I found an empty bottle for Valium marked Mrs. Gloria Cooper, one tablet three times a day, 10 mgs. Valium is a tranquilizer that the federal government added to its Restricted Use List because of widespread abuse, and 30 mgs. a day is a very heavy dose! ARTHUR SCHLESINGER Arthur Schlesinger was a Harvard brain-truster for John F. Kennedy before the young president was shot down. I copped his garbage early in 1973. My driver at the time was Grimes Poznikoff, who has achieved fame as the "Automatic Human Jukebox." Grimes and I picked up a whole mess of Schlesinger's garbage. It was beautiful! It was so beautiful that I had a vision a genuine quasi-mystical experience. Standing there on the curb, staring into the can at the nondescript pile of garbage which once belonged to Arthur Schlesinger, I began to hallucinate. The yellow toilet tissue suggested his professorship, the eggs, his eggheadedness, the sour cream and cottage cheese lids looked like his glasses. I began to rearrange the garbage and finally came up with the first
work of realistic garbart the garbage portrait. A garbart portrait of Arthur Schlesinger made from Schlesinschloss:
A.J. with his creation.
Each year the National Institute of Garbology holds a contest to determine who receives the title of Garbartist of the Year. I have won 17 years in a row! With the publication of this book, you too can enter. First prize is an autographed picture of me. Send your garbart portraits of famous people to the National Institute of Garbology, Annual Garb-art Contest. This portrait sells for twenty thousand dollars. (Price includes lifetime supply of bug spray.) It value will increase after Schlesinger croaks. Unfortunately, although I was the founder of the School of Garbart, I am not the granddaddy of garbart. Artists have been using garbage as a medium since the invention of imagination. The contemporary artist best known for his garb-art is the Parisian visionary, Armand. His works include exploded MG car bodies, "ravage art," "burnt cello" and "civilization number one accumulation of garbage in polyester." He has created a pendant made of cigar and cigarette butts! Like me, Armand is a genius and deserves the high prices he receives for his garbage. Schlesinger's garbage contained colorful brochures from the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, a fan letter from a professor at
Michigan State University, an invitation to participate in a seminar at a Washington, D.C. college, the Harvard University class of '38 Newsletter, an invitation to a 50th Anniversary Celebration at Aquinas College, a review copy of a book and a letter stating that the Shipley Private School was finally going co-ed. This was mixed with copies of the Voice, the Wall Street Journal (he's on their Op-Ed board), the New York Times, the New York Post, the Daily News, the Manchester Guardian, the New Statesman, Saturday Review, Newsday, and Intellectual Digest. There were six copies of a McGovern-Shriver newsletter, a request to use his name in the McGovern Environmental Task Force's advertising, an offer to address the Committee For Public Justice at an upstate motel, the menu from a McGovern Fundraising dinner where Artie was guest speaker, and an unanswered invitation from the Lexington Democratic Club to attend a cocktail party at which feminist Gloria Steinem would speak. Further to the right, I removed another invitation this one was from the Center for InterAmerican Relations. They wanted Artie to address a luncheon in honor of the Foreign Minister of Mexico! All this lecturing and writing about the poor and oppressed has made Schlesinger a very rich man. I found a letter to his live-in maid, receipts from an American Express Card, a brochure from an expensive leather goods store and a bill for $211.86 for the purchase and installation of a carpet in the kid's room. The professor received plenty of requests for contributions a plea from Harlem Homecoming, a letter soliciting funds for cancer research signed by Laurence Rockefeller and an invitation to attend a dinner at which you had to promise to buy at least $2500 worth of Israeli Defense Bonds. Since Schlesinger didn't respond, I pledged to buy $25,000 worth of bonds for him! The Schlesingers’ had entertained some guests that weekend, and I found, first, the phone number of a local liquor store that delivered; second, a bill from the store for $5.88 plus$4.22 for delivery; third, Schweppes tonic empties and a bottle of George the Fourth whiskey. The booze seemed to give his garbage a diplomatic air. It was hard to tell how well they ate since their trash contained mostly breakfast foods Lipton tea bags, four containers for milk and one for cream,
wrappers from bacon, butter and corn flakes, along with an empty can of what seemed to have been pate de foie gras. Suddenly, I was taken aback by what I saw in the professor's garbage can empty bottle of prescription pep pills speed! If I weren't a Yippie to begin with, I would have been terribly disillusioned. Then the garbage turned boring, boring again, boring beyond belief. I found a first draft of a letter to the editor of the New York Review of Books, which may be of value some day if there's ever a tremendous scarcity of paper. In it Schlesinger comes off as an apologist for the Democrats by disagreeing with the majority of liberal historians who believe Truman's Korean War paved the way for Vietnam. He had a tough time proving this, because his claim that HST's low defense budgets indicate the Truman Doctrine ("Containment of Communism") wasn't military in nature is false. Truman had a higher peacetime defense budget than any president before him did. I have to flunk the professor's trash! SPIRO AGNEW Up until his timely death, Spiro Agnew lived in Beverly Hills where he was a respected member of the conservative Republican community. Not bad for a crook! When I garbanalyzed him in 1974 he lived in the fashionable suburb of Kenwood, Maryland. His home was easy to spot because of the Secret Service gazebos in the driveway and the fence around it. I started to make a mad dash for his trash, which was stashed in the backyard, when a woman who lived next door spotted me and began to scream, "Get away from here, you filthy hippie or I'll call the police!" With this woman for a neighbor he didn't need the Secret Service! Rather than confront the local gendarmerie, I left but was back next collection day, much earlier. Even though it was 6 00 A.M., the woman saw me once again and started yelling. I gave her the finger, then began emptying Spiro's slops into a garbage can liner. There were three cans, each brimming over, and I could fit the contents of only two of them in my bag. As I ran from the house to my car, I regretted having to leave all that good garbage behind. But that's life, isn't it? Back at the lab we found Spiro's slops plentiful and revealing. First, there were Christmas cards about 350 of them (Mrs. A. must have been doing some spring-cleaning).
Two came from ITT (one from Chairman of the Board Harold Geneen), while others were sent by Maryland's attorney general, comptroller, Senator and just about every two-bit political hack in the state. There was even one from a judge. I wonder how many other convicted crooks get cards from such high-ranking people? Still others were mailed by the Duponts, Greek magnates Saroula Skouras and George Pappas, Mrs. Eisenhower, J. Copley (whose publishing empire has been linked with Nixon crony C. Arnholt Smith), Bill Marriott (Donald Nixon was employed by his firm) and even one from the Hearsts of California to the CIA! Some of the cards with unrecognizable names had short notes written on them. One recurring theme was that Spiro was a "scapegoat" for "someone else" and that "a small group of people" was out to get him. A typical one read, "I could write pages and pages of anger at the press and what it has done to our country in these last years . . . they have been out to get Richard Nixon since Alger Hiss (how very remarkable it is that he got to the presidency). Anyone and everyone near him has suffered...." Another note read, "Our sincere wishes despite the wounds inflicted upon you by an unjust society." Someone tried to boost Spiro's spirits by saying, "May I remind you Grant was a drunk running a street-car company. Patton was almost cashiered as Captain for foul language. Mitchell was accused of treason . . . all before their time in history came." Despite the fact Spiro T. had virtually pleaded guilty to a felony, most of the notes ended like this one, "We still maintain our faith in you and believe you're innocent of all charges." One of them pleaded, "Ted, restore my faith in government," but all letters were favorable. I wonder what he did with all his hate mail? There were a few effusive letters from out-and-out Spiro Agnew groupies. One named Mary thanked him profusely for "giving my scrap book to Frank Sinatra." Another advised, "Going through life's computer you may be spindled and messed up but we are glad to see you didn't fold 'A patient in a nearby mental hospital wrote a classic twenty seven page letter: "I am not insane I am mentally ill and Mr. Agnew will always be Vice President as long as I live. It is terrible the way the press talks about him. They call the president Tricky Dicky that is a terrible way to address the highest station in our nation. I am a good Republican. They took me home to Coterie November." A teenager who wanted to be "the first one-armed woman to swim the English Channel" wrote him another fan letter. Finally, one of his
friends wrote, "Sorry you couldn't go duck hunting see you next golf season!" The main thing Spiro's trash expressed was that, in fact, crime does pay. For example, Spiro was in the process of selling his Kenwood mansion and buying a more modest place (his idea of more modest was, according to news reports, one hundred to one hundred fifty thousand dollars). In response to one house-seller's offer, he wrote, "Mrs. Agnew and I are not in a position to make definite decisions on a new home until we sell the one we already have." This letter was typed and mailed from 716 Jackson St. N.E., the location of an office given to Spiro by the federal government to "get his vice-presidential papers in order," not to answer personal mail! ' If the Agnews were tightening their belts, it didn't show in their trash. I found uneaten lamb chops, a giant empty can of crabmeat, pepperoni, spaghetti, eight cans of Hunt's tomato sauce, Pepperidge Farm cookies and several boxes of Girl Scout cookies. (How could anyone who bought Girl Scout cookies take a kickback?) I also found evidence that Mrs. Agnew had crabs there were fourteen uneaten shellfish wrapped in newspaper. Fe! Mrs. Agnew also threw away the charge account receipts from her Christmas shopping, after piecing them together we found she'd got Spiro a coat for $40, Susan (their daughter) two pillows for $11 each and Bob (their son) a digital clock for $44. Spiro read the Maryland Monitor, the Washington Star, the Washington Post, the Baltimore Evening Sun, the Greek Sunday News, the Hellenic Chronicle (proudly addressed to the Vice President of the United States) and the Chevy Camper. He clipped out lots of articles and, of course, most of them concerned him: "The Decline and Fall of Spiro T. Agnew" (Parade Magazine); "Views On Agnew," "Agnew's Secret Service Protection Withdrawn" (New York Times); "Spiro Says Goodbye to Charlie the Barber" (Baltimore Evening Sun); "Spiro Still Hero in Ancestral Home" ( Washington Post); "US Judges Here to Get Out of Agnew Case" and "Agnew Serious on Settling in Maryland. " Many other articles were about the trial of Baltimore County Executive Dale Anderson (misery loves company) and friends passing away "Retired Meat Packing Official Dies"; "Ex-Senator Dies."
The personal side of the trash contained a letter to Susan setting up a meeting at a local McDonald's, a letter from one of Kim's schoolmates' parents and about fifty personal notes and phone messages: "4 P.M. dinner, Long Informal Dark"; "April 24, Frank" (Sinatra?); "Scrap book NovDec 73"; "Call Secret Service window panes" (the bullet-proof glass in their windows was being removed and installed in the Ford's home). I also recovered blank applications from the Social Register and the Library of Human Resources with "no reply" written on them; Agnew knew he'd be dropped because of his legal problems. Then I hit upon two garbifacts that took my breath away. One was a list titled "Honorary Members of the Senate Red Cross," with the home address of every notable in the U.S. Senate people like Mamie Eisenhower and Margaret Truman thrown in for good measure. This was the key I had always dreamed of finding. Now I could realize my lifelong ambition of becoming the new J. Edgar Hoover of Washington, D.C. Only I'd go even farther than Hoovernot only would I accumulate "dirt" on everyone important in government, I'd accumulate everyone important in government's dirt! The other garbifact was a torn-up picture of Nixon shaking hands with Elvis! This official White House photograph was snapped right after Dick had made him an honorary narcotics officer! Garbart sculpture of former Vice President Spiro Agnew:
THE COXES In1979 I was unable to get Richard Nixon's garbage. I did succeed, however, in throwing a rotten tomato at him the last time he visited New York City. If he wouldn't let me have his garbage, I figured I'd let him have some of mine. Unfortunately, I hit Patrolman Gallagher on the back of his neck and was arrested and charged assault on a police officer. When the arresting officer found another tomato on my person they added another charge possession of a deadly weapon. I was high on the Secret Service's shit list. They thought I was a potential assassin of Richard Nixon, which is totally absurd; I want Nixon alive so I can get his garbage! The closest I've come to the ex-president's trash is the barrel frequented by an offspring, namely, Tricia and her hubby, Edward Cox. Their trash appeared on a pretty regular basis and was quite plentiful. It contained letters from The National Trust for Historic Preservation, Common Cause, Conservation Association and Consumer Buying Guide, some unopened, some perused then garbified. There were numerous catalogs from posh department stores, like Bonwit Teller, and many invitations to attend charity events, such as a spaghetti dinner for the Girls and Boys Service League, a
Debutante Ball for the New York Infirmary and a Broadway play for the Girl Scouts. The Coxes' have a home in Westhampton, Long Island, and there were bills from Long Island Lighting which had that address on it; a bill for $243, from the Westhampton Country Club; along with a computerized itemization of the expenses: $120 for bridge lessons for Tricia, another $100 for tennis court fees, $22 for a buffet dinner and $1 for Mr. Cox's cigar. Also among the refuse was mail from institutions of higher learning like the University of South Sewanee, an invitation to attend a backgammon match aboard a Greek ocean liner sponsored by the Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States and evidence the Coxes were having their home de-bugged (receipts from Bliss Extermination). Reading matter at the Coxes' consisted of Women's Wear Daily, Sports Illustrated, Reader's Digest, the Antique Monthly and Arizona Highways. Eddie's sister, Mazie, had decided to marry her longtime boyfriend, Brink, and the garbage was full of all kinds of hand-written notes regarding the wedding: "Call Mrs. Sullivan to borrow the chairs"; "Call Tiffany"; "Call Dee Re: silverware." These trivial notations outnumbered the interesting ones: "Write Ann Kaplan CBS abortion"; "Call Beebi" and "Emergency-call Ann Schlott [a bigwig RepubIican] immediately." Brink and Mazie's wedding would be in Westhampton on the ninth of September, a very informal affair, I learned from the first draft of a letter the bride-to-be had written to one of her ex-beaus. Aside from "deep regrets" from the Delafields for not being able to attend the wedding ceremony (Mazie would wear her great-aunt Harriet Delafield's gown) and a letter reading, "Now you'll always stand with your head held high and never suffer from fallen arches or flat feet," the only other significant piece of garbified matter was a list of rooms where VIP guests would sleep, including a room for Richard Nixon! Why wasn't the Secret Service on the case? Any nut, happening upon the room assignments in the Coxes' trash, can could easily have formulated plans for tossing a grenade through the right window and have taken Nixon out of the ballgame. I was, to put it mildly, shocked.
There were some personal letters in the can. One from Mrs. Cox's niece in Portugal, another from a friend in Monaco and several concerning Mazie's wedding. The most revealing of these, from a friend to Mrs. Cox, read, "I'm so glad your two [Ed and Tricia] aren't in the news "defending Nixon like Dave and Julie] all the time. You are so sensible." I quite agree. NEIL SIMON Neil Simon is one of America's greatest popular play writers. He has produced Broadway hits like The Odd Couple, California Suite, Barefoot in the Park, The Sunshine Boys and many others. He is a genius. But his garbage had ants in it! They infested the car of my driver, Sandy, and then infiltrated the National Institute of Garbology. They were able to eke out a humble existence here for over six years, despite our strict sanitary conditions. (We don't want to contaminate any garbified archival matter.) When my neighbors complained about the ants I told them, "Hey, those are Neil Simon's ants!" I'm happy to report that after my neighborhood's big bicentennial clean-up of 76, the last of Simon's ants have disappeared into a roach motel. Aside from this, Simon's slops were superb. Late one Sunday night I found the left-overs of what, for many well heeled Jewish families, is a typical Sunday morning breakfast: an almost totally intact whitefish and a halfeaten bagel with scraps of lox and traces of cream cheese on it. I was tempted to eat some of that lox, as I'd been priced out of the lox market when I went on food stamps. Underneath some orange peels and empty milk and egg cartons was a slew of papers. There was a letter stating $2.53 was deposited in Neil's accounta royalty from a play he wrote more than a decade ago. Another notice said that $995 had been deposited for "payroll exchange tax" and still one more acknowledging deposit of a whopping $87,000 first payment for the screenplay rights to his Broadway smash The Last of the Red Hot Lovers. No wonder he can afford to toss away lox. Further garbanalysis, turned up a turned-down fund-raising plea from The Committee for a Sane Nuclear Policy and a receipt and letter of thanks from the Spence Adoption Service (he'd given them $50). Of course, there was the de rigueur receipt from Bloomingdale's. This one was for two pairs of slacks: $63.
In fact, the catalogues and brochures from art galleries, the invitations to attend private screenings, the bulletins from the fashionable private school their children attend and the letter to their live-in maid were typical of the rich urbanite, very much like Jackie, or Arthur Schlesinger. I felt I was experiencing a garbological déjà vu. Curiously, Simon's garbage proved, beyond the slightest reasonable doubt, that you are what you throw away Neil Simon's entire life, literally, was in his garbage, in the form of a biographical resume sheet, sent to him by Who's Who to be checked for factual accuracy. OTTO PREMINGER During the Great Garbage Drought of 1973 did a lot of things I'm ashamed of now one of them was garbanalyzing movie magnate Otto Preminger's compacted trash. Working with this kind of garbage is very depressing for someone with a feel for real garbage; not only was Otto's stuff stale, it had lost all its individuality. There is no need to compress garbage into bricks! Nobody's going to build houses with them because of the garbage stigma and they pollute the air much more when they burn than natural stuff. Trash compactors explode if you put in the wrong kind of garbage. The National Institute of Garbology is unalterably opposed to compactors. Unflattened and garbanalyzed, Preminger's pile proved pretty poor. His ecologically segregated trash consisted mostly of cardboard containers from milk, bacon, egg - all of which could be recycled. But Otto's waste was sitting on the curb waiting to be picked up by the city garbagemen and would have been burned had I not rescued it. It was also very repetitious the same variety and brands of breakfast foods over and over again. Either Otto was on a special diet or ate only his morning meal at home. Another strange thing was the lack of cans. TONY CURTIS I found Tony Curtis's garbage by mistake. While conducting a garbological investigation of Henry Fonda, it popped up in his normally empty can. Tony was evidently staying at his pal Henry's for a while. Tony's trash was a typical Hollywood heap: empty envelopes from east and west coast public relations men, one from his firm, Curtis Enterprises, and
another from a Chicago attorney which had two uncanceled stamps removed from it so they could be re-used. There were envelopes that seemed to have contained fan letters, along with one from the Chase Manhattan Bank, Credit Card Division. This may come as a tremendous shock to Tony's mother, but one of the three letters he threw away came from her! Part of text of Mrs. Schwartz's letter to her little Tonyala Bubala is reprinted here.
Tony's mother can console herself with the fact that he also threw away a lettergram from someone who lived in his house in London. This piece of garbage began with a report on the condition of the place, then subtly reminded Tony he still owed the local booze store $50 and ended this way: "Life continues status quo, the house is empty without the Curtis mob to fill it and Gregg is into a complete group of Bianca and Elliot Gould."
Actually, Mrs. Schwartz shouldn't feel bad at all; her son also discarded three "Dear Poppi" picture postcards from his daughter. I also came into possession of several notations on scrap paper: "Call so-and-so at Time magazine, buy milk, cornflakes, tomatoes, Jarlsberg Swiss cheese, two green peppers, tape measure, apple juice, baby food, fruits, steak, buy linens for Kelly's boudoir," etc stuff that would interest the typical Tony Curtis fan, no doubt, but not a muckraking garbologist. | After a letter from someone who "just finished writing a new film script for Paradise Lost for the producer of Cat Dancing," the trash degenerated into labels from three Cowboy-cut Wrangler denim shirts ($8 each) and jeans (size 34; $15), along with an unidentified one from Bloomingdale's, that known hangout of the Upper East Side Garbage Crowd, marked $30. Near this lay some advertising from Peanuts Bedsheets, a plastic bag from Jockey Life Undershorts, a laundry bill for $17 in the name of Henry Fonda, two front-seat stubs from an off-Broadway theatre and some very incriminating evidence pillow tags that read, "Do not remove under penalty of law." Aside from the Daily News, the Times, shirt cardboards, Mr. Bubble baby soap, a Michelob beer bottle, some empty Tampax tubes and a pair of panties, that was it for Schwartz's shmutz. DUSTIN HOFFMAN
Dustin Hoffman is a great actor; in my opinion, he's the new Bogart. I especially liked him in Midnight Cowboy, in his role as "Ratso," a New York City sleazoid who just about starved to death. Too bad Ratso couldn't go through Dustin's trash, because that guy throws away more good food than
you could shake a knife and fork at! Click here to see the contents of Dustin's Dustbin. [Garb9.jpg] I found ham, cheese, hamburger, oriental sauces, potatoes, lettuce you name it in that can, enough to have a picnic in front of it every day! Repeated garbanalyses revealed that cause of disposal was never mold or staleness. Click here for exclusive photo of a garbage autopsy or garbautopsy, is being performed.
Hoffman just wasted good food. On top of that, the actor is sort of a health nut with junk food tendencies. I found wrappers from natural foods, such as unbleached sugar, organic sunflower seeds, rice and cashew nuts mixed in with empty pop bottles, candy wrappers and stale white bread. I guess he just can't resist that good old junk food. Dustin's dumpings would also throw an ecology freak into a fit. I found plenty of newspapers, paper cups and plates and towels and bags, empty return-deposit bottles and numerous recyclable throwaways. Dustin's garbonoia level was low, so there was plenty of private correspondence. I found a letter from his union AFTRA forwarded from his old address in Greenwich Village. Dustin had moved after some Weatherpeople living next door allegedly blew themselves and their makeshift bomb factory to bits. I also recovered two envelopes sent by Dustin to his pre-teen daughters, Jennifer and Karina, while he was in Italy making a film. A really heartwarming piece of trash was a note from
Grandma Lee and Grandpa Kenny to Jennifer: "This darling gift was handmade and sold to finance cancer treatments for little children who need help." A few days later I found Grandma's gift - a rag doll made from yarn. It was downhill from there: cat and dog food, Players Club House passes to tennis garhes and an empty bottle from a common antibiotic (the insurance report said he had "a minor acne condition of the back"). Mrs. Hoffman attends the French Institute, owns a black cashmere dress that cost $180 at Bloomingdale's, wears Diane Love perfume ($28) and has considered sending her daughter to Fowler Ballet School, which is natural since Mrs. Hoffman's a former ballerina. That about unwraps Dustin's dustbins, aside from wrappers from homedelivered filet mignon "steak-ins" and a music box that played Lara's theme (obviously not his favorite tune). TONY PERKINS I was sleepin' like a log When I heard somethin' jerkin' There stood Rita Lookin ' just like Tony Perkins She said would ya like to take a shower I'll show you to the door I said No! No! I've been through this movie before! Bob Dylan, Psychomotor Nightmare Bob Dylan was so impressed with Tony Perkins' portrayal of a deranged killer in Hitchcock's flick Psycho that he sang about it. A lot of other people were similarly impressed, as from then on Tony has consistently played neurotics or psychotics in such films as Pretty Poison, Friendly Persuasion, Catch 22 and many more. What I wanted to know was, how had his being typecast as a nut affected his garbage? Garbanalysis of trash produced a small, tan pay envelope with minute particles of a vegetable substance on the bottom of it. I ran a test and, just as I suspected, it was marijuana! Digging deeper I found nothing but organic food raw milk, yogurt, sprouts, honey ice cream, goat cheese, honey carrot muffins, grains and nuts. There were some notes from his maid: "Mr. P. call Mrs.Young"; and a fat, Xerox copy of a play called Alfred the Great. Tony subscribed to Variety and Cue; receives job offers to teach
drama at colleges and invitations to attend exclusive events; and he tosses away his fan letters. Luckily, the bottom of Tony's bag was more interesting. After I found a note that read, "Call Mr. Delson at [phone number] regarding Cavett Show," I phoned and told Mr. Delson I'd found the note he left for me in Tony Perkins' garbage and was returning his call. "Who is this?" he demanded. "A.J. Weberman who else would you leave notes for in trash cans?" I answered. He hung up. There was also a postcard with "roach problem" printed on it in bold letters and which contained a segment of Perkins' handwritten poetry: Conversations in my head Why am I pointing down instead Fingers reaching at the sky Plainly stating eye to eye Next to this clearly disturbed piece of verse lay a card from Tony's agent, reading, "Darling I think we finally hit pay dirt". She was right; the poem answered my question about how his having to play the part of neurotics affected his trashit had made it neurotic. Click here to see Tony Perkins pile.
RITCHIE HAVENS When some of my friends heard I was after Havens' heap they told me to lay off because "he doesn't deserve garbology." They explained that Havens was a kid from the poor Bedford-Stuyvesant section of Brooklyn who had played for nickels and dimes in the Village's dingy cafes for years before he finally got a record contract. He had paid his dues. His songs often attacked war and racism and he frequently performed at benefit concerts. I told them not to worry. It is a status symbol in the rock world to have A.J. Weberman steal your garbage! A few days later I was in front of his Greenwich Village townhouse. I scooped up his trash and shlepped it to nearby Washington Square Park where I performed a public garbanalysis on it while street-singer David Peel and the Yippies looked on. The first thing I found was a note thanking Richie for doing a benefit for Americans for Children Relief. Near this was a letter from-Richie's management firm, the William Morris Agency, informing him that he'd received a request to do another benefit. Does this guy ever do any paying gigs? I hope so.
On the personal side he had a pet cat (wrapper from cat chow); he drank a little (Schweppes mixer bottle); and he eats modestly (wrappings from hamburgers and franks and an empty bottle of Seven-Up). He has a daughter named Nancy who likes to play tic-sac-toe, and Havens is a pretty good artist judging from the sketch I found. Richie's righteous rubbish was topped off by ten broken guitar strings, testimony to his passionate, exuberant style of guitar playing. DAVID ROCKEFELLER David Rockefeller is chairman of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Trilateral Commission bastions of the American ruling class. David's economic power is incalculable. He sits on the board of directors of dozens of major American corporations and he is chairman of the Chase Manhattan Bank, Exxon, World Trade Center, Rockefeller Center, etc., etc. David, who has always been less of a public figure than Nelson, is considered by some to be the most powerful man in the world. I invested thirty-five cents in Rockefeller and took the subway up to the block that the Daily News said he lived on. But I had no exact address. So I cased the area looking for the poshest townhouse. When I found one with a special entrance for the servants I figured, "Dis mus be da place." l opened the wooden garbage bin that housed the cans, but the cupboard was bare! This was big-name garbage, so I put him on our special Enemies List, which indicated nightly visits to his can. But the only time I ever found anything was the night mentioned earlier when I took the AP reporter with me. America was bullish on Rocky's rubbish, pitiful though it was, and the AP feature story was picked up by practically every newspaper, TV and radio station in the country. It began, "Uptown the street is dark and deserted, it's 1:00 A. M. Weberman calmly approaches the home of David Rockefeller, president of the Chase Manhattan Bank and brother of Governor Nelson Rockefeller. No lights are on. Slipping past the iron fence, he lifts the lid of the garbage bin. He extracts a small brown paper bag, spotted with grease, and holds it up, grinning."
Thanks to all this publicity I had to cross the Rock off my list. Too bad! At that time the Rockefeller boys were on the front pages again this time it was Nelson who was making headlines by ordering the massacre of rebellious inmates in Attica State Prison. A month after the Attica murders I decided to make one last attempt on David's trash, hoping he'd let down his guard, mistakenly thinking I'd gotten all the garbage from him I needed. It was 4:00 A.M. and I sneaked up to his bin, opened it and was about to extract the contents when two guys grabbed my arms and knocked the garbage back into the can. "What the hell are you putting in there?" one of them yelled. "Puttin it in? I'm takin it out!" I answered. "You're takin what out?" Before I could tell him, the other cop says, "He's nuts." "I'm not nuts. I collect garbage. You know some people collect stamps, others collect coins. I collect - " "Let's see some I.D." Then, "Okay, Weberman, never come back here again. This man's garbage is private property." The next day, Detective Finnegan of the Red Squad called the underground newspaper I wrote for at the time and left a message for me to call him at police headquarters. When I heard the Red Squad was after me I felt greatly honored; they investigate and harass only the most distinguished radicals. "Going through David Rockefeller's garbage is a threat to National Security," I boasted to my fellow journalists. I never returned Finnegan's call, and that was the last I heard from the Red Squad for a while. But about a month later, five members of the squad, along with eight regular cops, showed up at a demonstration I'd organized against Capitol Records. The Red Squad's harassment only whetted my appetite for this high mucky-muck's muck, and his name went right back on the list. I have a constitutional right to go through garbage. Only now I made sure his house wasn't staked out before making my move! My determination paid off. Soon, after one of the most intensive searches in the history of garbology, I obtained a can of Rockefeller's garbage! The first thing in Rockefeller's rubble to strike my highly trained eye was a sudden squirt of juice from a rotten grapefruit I squeezed by mistake. Then
I flashed on the newspapers David Rockefeller reads. There were four copies of the New York Times, three of the Daily News and one of the New York Post, along with a few copies of Il Progressoa local Italian-American paper. I fought my way through some twigs and leaves only to find plastic garment bags mixed in with two grease-stained pillow cases. Click here to see Rocky's rubble.
Then I hit what I thought was pay dirt, but turned out to be only left overs from a typical Rocky servant repast: a meat-tray from a sirloin steak with a $5.29 price tag on it, an empty bottle of Budweiser beer, a bag from A&P onions, one from Hard & Krisp spinach and a few pieces of stale cake. Digging deeper I came across an empty bottle of Dewar's Scotch (statusseeking Chase Manhattan execs, take note) and some empties from Canada Dry ginger ale. I also found a bottle from Grand Union lemonscented detergent in the same vicinity. Too bad David didn't use it as a mixer; he might never have sent the Red Squad to intimidate me again! I then recovered a single portion box of Kellogg's cornflakes, some banana peels, the top from a bottle of Imperial orange juice, a Hickory smoked bacon box and a Lipton tea bagin short, all the makings of his servants' breakfast. I still hadn't found anything with his name on it! Digging deeper, I extracted a box from Vassar's Elegant Candees and a roll of toilet paper that was not
quite used up. As I pondered this unponderable I struck it rich a copy of American Legion magazine addressed to David Rockefeller, the first thing I ever found with his name on it. I felt like going to the nearest land of flee and staking my claim on that can! I thumbed through the magazine and congratulated myself. "A. J., you've come a long way, kid. Here you are reading the same magazine that a Rockefeller threw away less than twenty-four hours ago!" American Legion was just the tip of a rich vein of magazines with the Rockefeller tacit seal of approval on them: three issues of Sports Illustrated; one copy of European Community (articles on the Common Market of interest to American Capitalists); Commodities, a magazine of futures trading; the Ripon Society Newsletter, the house organ of "liberal" Republicans, another copy of American Legion Magazine (to balance the Ripon Newsletter and keep the trash middle-of-the road?); Arte Milano, an Italian art magazine; and, finally, three copies of Park East, an Upper East Side ad rag. I also found a catalogue from an exclusivemail-order house addressed to Mr. David Brown, I62 E. 65th Street (Rocky's address)he must've figured that if they found out he was a Rockefeller they might use his name in their advertising. Soon I found a small brown bag with ripped-up letters and empty bottles in it. Piecing the fragments together told me the mini-garbage belonged to Rocky's English live-in maid; poor Mrs. Miller took Codeine for pains in her back, liniments for her aching muscles, laxatives for her bowels. It looks like Rocky works his servants hard! I was at the end of his bag, scraping the bottom of the barrel, hoping to find at least fifty collars' worth of used money that was too crumpled up and dirty for Rocky to use. All that was left was a wrapper from a pack of Kents, a broken potato shredder, an empty tube of Polident Denture Adhesive, some peach pits, an IBM card and the inevitable dirt and dust to which we all, even the very rich, must return. JACK ANDERSON REPORTING Inspired by my garbological expedition against Bob Dylan, syndicated columnist Jack Anderson garbanalyzed the trash of one of the most enigmatic figures in American law enforcement, J. Edgar Hoover.
Anderson's mentor, Drew Pearson, had exposed the FBI practice of conducting "trash covers" on so-called political extremists and Jack must have thought it fitting that Hoover be subjected to his own methodology. Anderson sent a cub reporter to Hoover's Washington, D.C., townhouse. The reporter took the trash from the can sitting right outside his door. Jack found that each day Hoover wrote out a list of what he wanted at his meals. The menus were scrawled on stationery that read "From the Office of the Director." One menu had the following: "6:15crab bisque, spaghetti and meatballs, asparagus, sliced tomatoes, sliced onions, Bibb lettuce, peppermint stick ice cream with strawberries." Hoover insisted that the crab bisque be purchased from the Hampton General Store. "Breakfast 10:15 A.M.fruit, hotcakes, country sausage, eggs and coffee. Another menu read: "Hotcakes for Clyde Tolson." Tolson was one of Hoover's associates in the Bureau and also the major beneficiary in his will. Hoover had cramps and farted a lot Anderson found lots of empty boxes of Gelusil anti-acid pills. Then Anderson hit a muck-pocket of empty booze bottles. Hoover had once said: "I am determined to summarily dismiss from the FBI any employee whom I find indulging in the use of intoxicants to any degree upon any occasion." The article on Hoover's heap caused quite a stir and even got a rise out of Edgar: "Anderson is becoming increasingly confused between the trash he writes and the trash he examines," he quipped. In another document he noted: "Anderson went through dog's leavings to get his story, he is that low." Despite his counter-attack, the article had done irreparable damage to Hoover's carefully cultivated public image and Hoover passed the word to his subordinates that he wanted a garbage compactor. His aides took up a collection and presented him with a compactor on the 47th anniversary of his FBI career, May 1971. NORMAN MAILER Norman Mailer has a reputation for being a highly volatile figure, so I approached his Brooklyn Heights townhouse with extreme caution. To put it bluntly I didn't want to get punched out! My worst fears were realized when he spotted me one night while I was rifling his cans. Mailer looked at me standing in the rubbish, poking around with a pocket flashlight, and walked
on. From the look on his face he must have thought I was a government agent and if he assaulted me he would have to face federal charges. Had I been a federal agent I might have tried to make a case against Mailer for violating the gambling statutes, since his trash was filled with betting slips. The trash also contained an itinerary for a college lecture tour, remains of instant foods, steel wool, a cheese wrapper, empty toilet paper rolls and a newspaper clipping with a picture of Mailer. I used this newsprint photo as a model for a garb-art portrait of Mailer that is reproduced here. Click here this garbart portrait made from Mailer's muck.
JAY GOURLEY OF THE NATIONAL ENQUIRER: HENRY KISSINGER It was a warm, clear midnight on Dumbarton Street in Georgetown, where the houses are stacked wall-to-wall like the bellows of a giant accordion, and where the small front yards are cultivated with flowers, shrubs, and ivy. The old trees that mark lapses in a ground cover of concrete and cobblestone cast silent moving shadows from the incandescent street lamps.The cars were parallel-parked bumper-to-bumper along both sides of Dumbarton, and since tomorrow was to be the pick-up day, dozens of full, neatly tied, plastic garbage bags lined the curbs on both sides of the street. As usual at that hour, young gay men patrolled the sidewalks or posed under lamp posts, waiting for other gays to drive or walk up and proposition them. (One of the oddities of Washington social geography is that the most socially desirable residential section of Georgetown is also the city's leading gay pick-up spot.) "Want to go for a ride?" came the soft, friendly voice of a stranger driving slowly by. "No, thank you," I answered in haste because a Secret Service agent was watching me from the shadows of a nearby doorway. Neither the agent nor I was there to meet other men. He stood on the dark porch to protect Secretary of State Henry Kissinger. I had come on an opposite mission. It was Tuesday, July 1, 1975. At 12:30 A.M. I made my move. I picked up the green plastic garbage bags all five of them in front of Kissinger's home and locked them in my car, on behalf of the National Enquirer. The Secret Service bodyguard, who had spent a good part of his life training and waiting, reacted instinctively. "Hey, wait. Stop that. What are you doing?" he shouted in bewilderment, as I put the first bag into my car. Fearing that conversation at this point would be counterproductive, I ignored him. He leapt from his perch on Kissinger's steps, then stopped. Suspecting a diversion, he held fast. Then he whistled a shrill, clear whistle that attracted the attention of every young man on the block. Quickly he mumbled some words into his left sleeve, where Secret Service agents carry their
microphones. (As they shoot with the left hand, they carry the mike up their right sleeve, so they can talk and shoot at the same time.) "Stop right there, " he yelled again, this time in a more assertive tone. "Everything's all right. I'll be through in a minute," I responded in the most reassuring voice I could muster. The agent was not soothed. "I said stop. Drop those bags. " "No, everything's all right. I don't need any help. Thank you anyway," I said, trying the old act-like-an-idiot approach (a technique I can perform with natural grace). By now all the bags were loaded into the car. "Don't try to leave, " the agent commanded. "Thank you very much, but really, I've got to be going." "Hold it right there. Don't move." "Well, if you insist. I guess I can stay a little longer." The agent was not amused. By then his supervisor was in front of the Kissinger home. The first agent spent the next 60 seconds or so trying to convince his skeptical superior of what had happened. Finally the boss turned to me with his verdict: "Put it back." "Sorry." "Its either that or go to jail." The prospect of spending the night in the D. C. slammer while the Secret Service jimmied my trunk to get their garbage back came as a shock. I thought for a moment and then settled on the one sure argument that never fails to forestall action in a bureaucracy: "All right then, jail it is But first you really ought to check with your superiors." I could see the logic sinking in. He smiled slowly, first to himself and then at me, as if I had some inside understanding of how the Secret Service really
operates. He asked for identification. More men came from the Washington police and Secret Service headquarters downtown. After much discussion over who would write the report, which undoubtedly would be subject to high-level scrutiny, a young intelligence officer of low seniority was rousted out of bed to drive to the Kissinger home and ask me questions for the better part of an hour. It would have taken longer, but the Secret Service already had checked me out before I received White House credentials a year or so earlier. Ultimately I was permitted to take the garbage home to my modest townhouse on Capitol Hill, to sort through at my leisure. You don't have to be a reader of the National Enquirer to know what I found in Kissinger's garbage. Almost every newspaper in the country listed the contents of the garbage on page one, after their editorial writers huffed and puffed about "garbage journalism" or "refuse reporting, "etc. The editorial in The Washington Post, for example, was headlined with one magisterial word: "Trash. " The Post said it was aware of "numerous extenuating or at least complicating arguments that can be made concerning the National Enquirer's foray, "but said it found such "intellectual exercises" to be "well, so much garbage." The editorial writer compared my behavior to child molesting, and called it "indefensible both as journalistic practice and as civilized behavior." The editorial page dismissed the whole subject with the sneering conclusion, "Some scoop." In the news section of that same edition, however, the Post had more to say. It had a preliminary survey of the contents of the garbage, thus itself scooping the National Enquirer, which would not be out with the story until later in the month. Post reporter Ron Shaffer, in fact, was first in line to peruse the garbage when I was through with it. His report: "A reporter pawing through the Kissinger household trash just before Gourley returned it found lots of leaves, an empty vichyssoise can, a coat hanger, a starch can, an unopened package of moldy, uneaten English muffins, diet soda cans, newspapers, and assorted perishable goo." I don't know what The Washington Post's standards are for news, but they must have been pretty desperate for a scoop to print that pathetic list, because quite obviously he had pre-sorted the garbage and kept the good stuff for the National Enquirer before turning the rejects over to the Post for publication there.
When my more complete reckoning came out in the National Enquirer, the Post featured it on the front page of its "Style" section. Empty packages and bottles for cigarettes, Maalox, aspirin, barbiturates. A memo indicating that the Secret Service had accidentally left a shotgun in the Virgin Islands. A liquor shopping list that included a case of Jack Daniels bourbon and a case of Ezra Brooks, the poor man's Jack Daniels. There are two possible explanations for this curious liquor order: either the Kissinger’s make important social distinctions concerning the quality of hospitality offered to their guests, or they are diluting the Jack Daniels with the cheaper stuff. Also in the garbage and for this I have yet to hear even a vaguely plausible hypothesis was unused and unopened food. There were the aforementioned English muffins, unopened, sticks of margarine still wrapped, cans of soup unopened, large bottles of apple sauce still tightly sealed, and more. Not another Watergate, I agree. But then again I never intended to synthesize these leavings into an expose of the traditional sort. My purpose was to have a little fun. Certainly it is not true to suggest that the content of the Kissingers' garbage bags is of no interest to right-thinking citizens. Manifestly, it was interesting to everybody. Now it is true, as the nation's editorialists pointed out, that it would be an unhappy situation if everybody or even everybody famous had to worry about reporters searching through their garbage looking for clues to their lifestyle. But this argument shows a little naiveté about the dynamics of news. It is not good manners that keep journalists from constantly raiding other people's trash, but good news sense. The content of trash is interesting only as a novelty. Immediately after my story there was a brief wave of trashnapping (including my own, and that of the National Enquirer headquarters in Lantana, Florida), which lasted about a week. Now everybody's trash is safe again for another five or six years, until people forget how quickly they became bored with trash the last time. Some items of serious interest did emerge from my survey of Kissinger's refuse. There were discarded copies of Kissinger's old itineraries and daily schedules. The interest is two-fold. First, along with the memo about the misplaced gun, they indicated that in the current long lull between assassinations the Secret Service is getting sloppy again. Anyone wanting information about the daily behavior patterns of any terrorist's most desirable potential victim merely had to pick it up on Dumbarton Street.
Second, these itineraries are interesting for telling us who does not know about Kissinger's daily activity. This message comes through when you compare these discards with the official schedules posted in the press room at the State Department. Those interested in going through the trash bags would discover, for example, that on one day this summer Kissinger met with David Rockefeller, chairman of the Chase Manhattan Bank, followed shortly by Arthur Burns, chairman of the Federal Reserve Board. Those who read the schedule put up by the State Department, or the articles written by reporters who relied on that schedule, were not so well informed. This raises the question of which is Kissinger's real trash, and who is publishing it. Is it the National Enquirer, which did some harmless rummaging in his refuse bags, or is it other elements of the national press, which accept and publish unquestioningly the official statements issued by the State Department and go along with the absurd deception involved in the repeating of trial balloons floated by "a high U.S. official aboard the Kissinger airplane"? Take another example. The State Department issued a statement following my trash escapade. It said, "This has caused grave anguish to Mrs. Kissinger, and the Secretary of State is really revolted by what he considers a violation of the privacy of his house." The State Department spokesman added, "Frankly, I'm sure most members of the press would agree with this. "I'm not sure what exactly the State Department spokesman thought there was to agree with in that statement. Did he mean that most members of the press would believe that Nancy Kissinger really was "anguished" and Henry "revolted" by the lifting of their garbage? If so, that would be a reasonable conclusion to draw from the 900 newspaper clips collected by the National Enquirer. Almost without exception, the articles I saw ran in papers of all sorts repeated the State Department statement, and none that used it challenged it in any way. ("Reporter's Rooting In Kissinger's Garbage Distresses Wife Nancy," was the headline in the Olympia, Washington, Olympian.) Now what public relations expert at the State Department dreamed up this Victorian scenario of the sensitive Lady Kissinger taking to her bed in anguish at the thought of some ruff an rifling through her garbage? Reporters are a cynical lot. I'm sure none of those who obligingly inserted this statement into their stories really believed it. In fact, so thoroughly
ingrained is the habit of reporting official statements that the reporters probably never even considered the literal truth of what they were writing down. They published this statement under the casual assumption that no State Department press officer really had bothered to inquire from Nancy Maginnis Kissinger what her reaction had been and that this six-foot-tall former foreign policy advisor to Nelson Rockefeller never had declared that she was "anguished." Thus the genteel fictions of an earlier era are thoughtlessly perpetuated: she is "anguished, " he is "revolted. " So who 's publishing garbage? The cause of Kissinger's alleged revulsion was my alleged invasion of his privacy. Of all the printed commentary about the episode that I saw, only a few editorial writers thought to explain the obvious point that, when it comes to invasion of privacy, the man who as National Security Advisor helped bug the home phones of his own staff members is one of our nation's leading practitioners. No one that I saw made another fundamental point about privacy. Politicians and others are not averse to giving the public glimpses of their private lives when it suits their purposes. Kissinger has been especially skillful at molding a useful public image of his private self. Is it really fair for him to scream 'foul" when a reporter uses one of the few means at his disposal to determine what Kissinger's private life is really like? It was the newspaper publishers of the nation in a fit of midsummer madness, not I, who turned the garbage caper into a major story: While accusing me of failing to meet the standards of good journalism, they chewed over the topic of Kissinger's garbage in news stories, editorials and columns. The treatment may be grouped into four major themes. There was, of course, the revulsion and anguish angle. Second, there were articles by and about various people who cashed in on the episode for purposes of self promotion (such as Rogers C.B. Morton, Secretary of Commerce, who graciously invited the reporters to watch and take pictures as he called the National Enquirer to request pick-ups on Tuesdays and Thursdays). The two most familiar themes, however, were closely interconnected: criticism of my reportorial method and denigration of my newspaper, the National Enquirer. Disapproval of my technique was not limited to Eastern establishment journals like The Washington Post. Editor Tom Reay wrote in the Rockford, Illinois Register-Repubic: (Garbage Sad Place to Seek Out Stories) "I've hidden in closets, listened through keyholes, read secretarial notes, eavesdropped on a restaurant dinner
conversation, and engaged in many more somewhat shady practices. And I thought I'd done them all. Until Jay Gourley, that is. "In what way hiding in closets and listening through keyholes is more ethical than inspecting garbage, Mr. Reay did not specify. But at least he admitted that he himself had employed such techniques unlike The Washington Post, which pronounced, as if in reference to some exotic practice in a far-off country: "That these unacceptable techniques [sifting through garbage, interviewing six-year-old kids, and posing as a doctor all somehow connected in the editorialist's mind] may bear some relationship to other 'borderline ' techniques of journalism does not seem to us in any way to justify, them. We will be frank to say that, on the contrary, it merely suggests to us that those other techniques to the extent that they take advantage of an unsuspecting victim are themselves of dubious value and propriety. "Could these elusive "other techniques" be things like pestering people at all hours of the night, implying to them that you know more than you really do to get them to give themselves away, standing in doorways and demanding cups of coffee all gleefully described by cub reporters Woodward and Bernstein in All the President's Men? One reason the Post got the Watergate story in the first place may be that the report of the original burglary came in on a weekend, so it was assigned to low-status reporters who were not afraid to use these un-statesman like techniques. Possibly now that its reputation as a respectable muckraker assures it of a steady flow of the kind of leaks which make for easy scoops, The Washington Post would like to call a moratorium on journalistic dirty tricks and raise the tone of the profession. But if the Post really wants a serious discussion of journalistic techniques, there are plenty of colorful examples available in its own shop. In contrast to the Post, I would like to commend the Plattsburg, New York, Press-Republican, which at least used its criticism of me as an occasion for self-examination. In a column entitled "Garbology Disgusting," editor Bert Walter said that while Kissinger was revolted, "We're disgusted. "And again, "To me, it's disgusting and unethical." But Walter added, "Many readers must ask themselves why the Press-Republican does certain things such as printing a picture on page one showing a man with a two-byfour stuck through his chest." To answer such questions, Walter announced the beginning of a column to discuss reader criticism of the paper. The most hysterical reaction came from U. S. News and World Report, which I read cover-to-cover every week for a compact presentation of the official view on leading issues. In his column, Editor Howard Fleiger saw
the incident as the culmination of "the rage for so-called investigative reporting" which "has now reached a pre predictable peak or, more accurately, a swampland." It was "a disgusting invasion of personal privacy." He concluded in a vein of self-flagellation, "It makes anyone who has devoted a lifetime to journalism . . . want to get into a hot tub and scrub with a strong soap until it hurts." Fleiger suffered under the refreshing delusion for a columnist that no one was interested in the subject that had excited him to such rhetorical extremes. "Who cares . . . who cares" he wrote as he listed for his readers some of the things I'd found in the Kissinger trash. "Does anybody really find such information an 'interesting' or useful revelation?" The delusion was widespread. Robert Popp wrote in his column ('Snap, Crackle by Popp") in the East Liverpool, Ohio, Review to reassure his readers that despite my dreadful behavior, "Gutter journalism still is restricted to the very, very, few who pander to a certain small audience." Small? I don't know about the East Liverpool Review (or The New York Times or The Washington Post), but the circulation of the National Enquirer is more than four million copies. Our issue featuring the death of Aristotle Onassis topped five million. This brings me to the last major theme in press coverage of my trashnapping: denigration of my newspaper. Two of the gentler references labeled us "misfits" (La Grande, Oregon, Observer) and "generic" (Reno, Nevada, State Journal). Most writers, however, could not resist the obvious metaphor. Jack Smith of the Los Angeles Times referred to "trash, which is what the Enquirer publishes. " Syndicated columnist Robert Yoakam said a search of his own trash revealed "several copies of the National Enquirer, apparently used to house-train puppy. " (Kissinger, by the way, uses The Washington Post to house-train his puppy.) Most critical of all was the Peoria, Illinois, Journal-Star. In an editorial it urged readers to mail their "most offensive" garbage to the Enquirer, which it described as "one of the most rancid garbage bins of American journalism. " I also don't know the circulation of the Peoria Journal-Star, or the influence its editorials usually carry, but so far we have received no garbage from Peoria (except for that clip from the Journal-Star).
So from Washington to Peoria held to be the entire cultural distance across our great nation I've gotten nothing but grief from newspaper editors. Really, am I wrong to feel a little hurt? I defy anyone to tell me that he or she glanced at a headline in a local paper about the contents of Kissinger's trash and passed over it in favor of an adjacent article about detente. Not that detente isn't more important of course, but it's sad that so many people are too humorless to admit that there is something in them that is attracted to stories about Jackie Onassis and the abominable snowman and flying saucers and other sideshow attractions that have made the National Enquirer by far the most widely read newspaper in the country. And it's even sadder that newspaper editors from Washington to Peoria feel obliged to use the National Enquirer as a whipping boy when they wish to appear responsible by criticizing the profession, without criticizing themselves. ABBIE HOFFMAN Abbie was one of my close friends. I saw him a few weeks before he committed suicide. He asked me how he might go about obtaining a mortgage so he could buy a large loft in Manhattan. I told him to forget it, the minute the banker's heard the name Abbie Hoffman they would demand a large down payment. Abbie was the master of the rip off of corporate American. He fought for civil rights in the south during the early 60's, helped make street theater an art and was a leader of the demonstrations at the Democratic National Convention in Chicago, '68. Abbie was a legend in his own time. I first garbanalyzed Abbie in 1971 when he was under intense government surveillance, and I decided that rather than having to compete with such agencies as the FBI and the Red Squad, I'd just ask him for his trash. I went over to his place on Thirteenth Street, a tarpaper shack, on the roof of a tall building. "Abbie, I want your garbage, I'm doing an article about it for Esquire magazine." "A.J.," he answered in his combination Lenny Bruce New Englander accent, "Ya want my gahbage? Tell ya what, I'll make ya up a list of things I throw away and give ya some stuff to put in and make it look really far-out, okay, A.J.?" A couple of days later I returned to his apartment and picked up the stuff he wanted me to plant in his rubbish (pomade from North Vietnam, a
hitchhiking ticket, Dear Abbie fan letters, and the like) with some handwritten instructions and suggestions regarding his simulated trash. Here's part of that document, a verbatim account of Abbie's fantasy garbage. 1. American Airlines Envelope. Say, "That's interesting' 'cause in Woodstock Nation he'd said he'd never fly Amerikan again 'cause they let the FBI go through his bags." 2. Cans of asparagus, peas, etc. Say, "They probably both cook, 'cause he was once a chef in a summer camp." 3. Can of bacon fat. Say, "Most freaks pour it down the drain and hope it clogs the pipes, but Abbie has real homing instinct." 4. Half finished manuscript. Say, "Must be Anita working on her next book her first was called Trashing since Abbie doesn't type. 5. Torn flag. Say, "There 's a warrant out for Abbie in Kansas for blowing his nose in a flag. When he had his flag-shirt case people sent him hundreds of flagshis kid, america, due July 4th, will have flag-diapers." 6. Moxie bottle. Say, "Remember in Revolution for the Hell of It he wrote Moxie was his favorite drink?" 7. Record Club Bills. Say, "See how they're addressed to different names? Abbie must be rippin' them off. " 8. Hitchhiking ticket. Say, "Judging from the dateApril 19and the locationConnecticutAbbie was probably hitchin' to Bobby Seales's trial in New Haven. Funny he got bustedSteal this Book has a chapter on how to avoid this." 9. Dear Abbie letters. Say, "One from an eleven-year-old who wants to blow up his school and one from Oklahoma for a mailorder copy of Steal this Book 'cause no bookstore will carry it!" I went back to his pad along with a photographer to get some of the real thing, and was about to liberate it when Abbie's wife appeared. I told her that before Abbie left to go on his current speaking tour, he said it was cool for me to take the trash. That fooled her. Steal this trash!
Abbie was righteous at the time he was subjected to garbanalysis, and I found my phone number Abbie had given a speech at the Dylan Birthday Party, along with street-singer Dave Peel's, phone numbers belonging to anti-war organizer Dave Dellinger, feminist Kate Millet, attorney William Kunstler and Black Panther defendant Lonnie McLucas. There was also a page from a manuscript about the similarities between the Yippies and Black Panthers, which concluded: "We both agree that revolution is inevitably armed struggle and that revolutionary violence is the only thing a system in power cannot absorb." Another political piece of rubbish was a reminder Abbie wrote himself to be at a press conference he was holding on the Capitol steps in regard to the charges he was facing for allegedly inciting the Mayday 1971, Garbage Riot! Abbie's Yippie garbage:
GARBOLOGY GETS BLACKLISTED Thanks to Abbie Hoffman's trash and the Esquire cover story there I was doing a land-office business in TV, radio and newspaper interviews. Everything seemed to be going fine until I appeared on A.M. New York, which was hosted by John Bartholomew Tucker. The night before my performance Abbie gave me a fresh bag of trash which I took with me to the studio the next morning. I told the show's producers that I had Abbie's trash in the bag and that he had given it to me. I asked them if it would be all right if I garbanalyzed it on the show."There's nothing dirty in there?" "Nope this is clean garbage." I was Tucker's last guest, and he came on heavy: "Now, a lot of you are going to think that my next guest's writing is a lot of garbage, but he does have a cover story in the current issue of Esquire about famous people's trash, called, 'You Are What You Throw Away.' His name is A. J. Weberman. A. J., when did you start sticking your nose in other people's slops?" "Well, it all started with Bob Dylan. I wanted to talk to him about his poetry but he wouldn't let me so I went through his garbage." You brought some garbage with you to the studio this morning?" "Sure did! Right here is Abbie Hoffman's heap. "I dumped it on the table in front of us coffee grounds falling all over the place, left-over juice spilling on the host. Everyone in the studio was laughing, everyone except Tucker. "Well, whadya find in this filth?" he demanded. "All kinds of things," I answered enthusiastically. "Dirty diapers, orange peels, milk containers and look at this! An empty pack of rolling papers!" "Is this all there is to garbology?" Tucker kvetched. "Well, the interesting stuff is the papers and letters, either to or by the subject. Dig this note from Abbie's wife to Abbie: 'Abbiediaper . . .'" Tucker grabbed the note from my hand. "You can't read that on the air," he gasped, "it's an invasion of privacy. Get off my show!"
I pretended it was all a joke and continued. "I also found some galleys of Anita's new book..." Tucker interrupted me, saying, "We have to go to a commercial now and when we come back, News Headlines." I got up to leave." You're the most disgusting guest I've ever had on my show," the pompous ass said. A week later an article appeared in Variety titled "Pesky Writer's Plugola Too Much Garbage for ABC and Gets Shoveled." The Variety article said I was "blacked out," indicating that my appearance was so far-out that they had to turn off the TV cameras. After this article appeared, all my previous TV bookings were canceled and no new ones came along. Kup's Show, which I really wanted to do, no longer felt I would be "relevant." I called up Variety and threatened to sue. They took down my statements, and in their next issue ran a story titled, "GarbagemanI'm Blacklisted," in which they retracted the lie that I was blacked out and printed a little of my side of the story. Variety denied that I was blacklisted, citing a television show I did in Boston on the same day the article came out. The article ended with a quote from an Esquire executive: "We're through pushing the garbage expert on TV since he couldn't sell enough copies to make up for the loss of face to the magazine!" Before this "reaction" came out, the Mike Douglas Show was considering having me on despite the first Variety story. When they heard Esquire had disowned me, they, too, washed their hands of garbology! The biggest loser in this whole affair was the American television viewing public. Their introduction to garbological consciousness was set back years. THE GARBOLOGICAL TECHNIQUE Anyone can find fame and fortune in the garbage can. Take, for the case of Jerold Schneider. When Jerry was a high school student in Los Angeles he happened to walk past the trash cans of Pacific Telephone which he found were filled with plant operating instructions, Bell System documents. "I found all the information I needed to start my own telephone company in those cans," explained Jerry. By the time he was in college Jerry had amassed enough information from two years of daily garbanalysis to do precisely that. Using special codes he'd found, our enterprising young garbologist ordered thousands of dollars' worth of equipment from Pacific Telephone. He kept his thefts within the "loss allowance" Pacific Telephone
figured for most deliveries, so the thefts went undetected. The only reason you're hearing about him today is because one of his associates squealed. Jerry did ninety days. But even that need not stop a dedicated garbologist. I received the following letter from a colleague in a high-security federal penitentiary: "What does a great Dylanologist have in common with a bank robber? For one thing, your curious method of research has been applied here very successfully. I can't help remembering how you went about piecing your work together. As prison censorship discourages precise language, let me say, you have discovered a very effective weapon." (Italics mine.) The CIA has always worked closely with garbage. In the early 1950s one of their agents in Vienna allegedly slipped an airport "garbage concessionaire" one thousand dollars for the trash he'd collected from a Russian airliner. The spy then dropped it in a public locker where it was soon picked up by another agent who flew it back to CIA headquarters in Virginia. Several agents examined it and told their superiors that their Viennese counterpart had wasted the government's money on nothing but garbage some torn magazines, paper napkins, an empty bottle, a crust of Russian black bread, a broken plate and a bent coat-hanger. Then the trash was forwarded to a Russian air power expert who realized the coat hanger was a special type made of shavings from the wing of a new longrange Soviet bomber he was investigating. From the hanger's composition he calculated the range and bomb load of the plane. Tools of the Trade Launching a garbological study, does not necessitate big investment. The things you will need are simple: Your subjects ' home addresses Carfare/ transportation. Pocket knife to cut hole in bag Extra plastic trash container. Gloves (optional) Good I. D. in case you are questioned by police The most important of these tools is the firstnamely, a list of addresses of noteworthy targets. These lists are essential to the science. They are like
the geologist's map, the mathematician's equations, the chemist's formulae. There are five basic ways to compile these address lists: 1. Word-Of-Mouth. People are often aware of someone famous living nearby them, or have been tipped by friends to interesting addresses. 2. Public Records. Voter registration lists are valuable if you check the rich and exclusive neighborhoods. Real Estate transactions and ownership records also have to be open to the public by law in most states. People who testify before congressional committees must give their addresses, which then become a matter of public record. In some states, candidates for public office must publish their names and addresses in a masscirculation newspaper prior to running for office. 3. Public Listings. The Dow Jones Register often gives addresses of the nation's top execs. Who's Who sometimes gives addresses, though not very often. There's a block-by-block listing of people, giving their name and occupation, called Coles Household Directory or Criss-Cross Directory. Some famous people are listed in the phone book under their real last name and first initial. Or some libraries have old phone books where you can look someone up before they became famous and unlisted. Maps of Hollywood stars' homes are also a valuable source. 4. Private Listings. Mailing lists, journalists' address books. There's a company called Celebrity Service that keeps tabs on celebs. 5. The Media. Newspaper stories sometimes give addresses. Check indexes under the name of person you're interested in. TV newsmen often go to people's homes to interview them when they are part of a big news story look for building number during the broadcast interview. 6. CD ROM telephone books, the INTERNET etc. Cruise the various expensive buildings and areas by address. Once you have your tools together and your lists compiled, you're ready to conduct a garbological expedition. Here are a few tips. Always act in an open manner. Go about your business in a professional way. Act as if you have a constitutional right to go through garbage which you have. Quickly perform your garbage identification analysis by pulling out a piece of junk mail. As soon as the identity has been verified, split with the garbage! If your subject spots you, ignore him or her. Garbage is abandoned property
and falls in the public domain. Tell subject you are on assignment from an ecology class in high school or college. Always carry the official National Institute of Garbology I.D. card which authorizes you to rout through muck by citing recent Supreme Court decisions. Flash this card at your subject and say, "I'm from the N.I.G. Just a routine check of your trash. A.J. Weberman sent me." (Cards available for $10.00 each from National Institute of Garbology. Ten dollars includes lifetime membership in National Institute of Garbology). If your subject threatens to call, or calls the police, leave the area immediately! Be careful of broken glass. Before you do a garbanalysis on a bag, check for glass, then remove it first so you don't cut yourself. When you're investigating someone high in the power structure, watch out for surveillance teams. Drive around the target several times, and if necessary, have someone distract them. Stay away from hospital garbage if you don't want to reach into a can and pull out a pair of tonsils or a recently amputated gangrenous limb. Even if you don't end up with the waste from the surgery room there's always the chance you might get the stuff from the contagious disease ward. When your friends and associates ask, "What did you find in St. Mary's Hospital's garbage?" you might have to tell them, "Oh, I just got (cough, cough) tuberculosis." Certain garbage cans are off limits: Mafia or Syndicate cans, for instance. Someone once came to me with the address of a famous gangster. I told him the can was off limits, he called me a coward. But a few weeks later there was a shoot-out in front of this can and when it was all over there were bullet holes in it. Anyway, there's a good chance that many of the top Mafiosi don't have any garbage to go through in the first place. After all, the late Carlo Gambino, reputed Godfather of the entire East Coast, didn't talk on the telephone for over forty years. He probably didn't throw away a shred of garbage for fifty! You can be a garbologist anywhere, of course, but New York City is one of the best places in the world to collect trash. Each square mile produces 375,000 pounds of garbage per day, 80% of which is paper. Although there is a local ordinance stating, "No person, other than an authorized employee or agent of the Department of Sanitation, shall disturb or remove any ashes, garbage or light refuse or rubbish . . ." the police never enforce it.
Many rich and famous people live in town houses on the fashionable Upper East Side and their garbage either sits in the public domain on the sidewalk or is stashed in a bin or nearby alleyway. When one tenant rents or owns the entire structure all you have to do is to find the garbage can with the building's number painted on it or locate the closest can. When several different tenants live in the same house you have to perform an Identification Analysis quickly. This entails looking through each bag for an item that links the trash with your subject for example, a piece of junk mail with the proper name on it. Since you can't do an Identification Analysis on ashes, Gotham's high-rise apartment buildings with their internal incineration systems once presented a grave threat to the urban garbologist. But thanks to the Environmental Protection Agency crackdown on sooty incinerators, many high rise owners are forced into leaving the trash either intact or compacted in front of the building minutes before the garbage men come to pick it up. If you really want to go after someone whole hog, you can rent a truck and pick up all the garbage in front of the high-rise in question. Then you have to sort through hundreds of tenants' slops till you find the one you want. The mass-collection method doesn't work in many high security buildings, because these fortresses have underground garages into which private garbage collectors back before picking up their payload. The only alternative in these cases is to buy the trash from the private carter. If you happen to run across a building with a working internal incinerator, don't throw your hands up in despair. All you have to do is to get past the building's mechanical, electronic or human security, and once you're inside you can apply quick-drying superglue to the incinerator door on your subject's floor so he'll be forced to leave his trash on the floor of the room. The next morning you show up again and collect it. Sometimes you also have to glue the chute doors on the floors above and below your subject. Of course, if you want to be extra cautious you can glue every one of them in the building. Another, less dramatic, method of dealing with this problem entails placing a phony out-of-order sign on the incinerator room door; and, of course, there's the old ecology class approach: You knock on the subject's apartment door and say, "Excuse me, I live in the building and I'm taking an ecology course in school. Well, they want me to look through a stranger's garbage to study the bottles, so could I please.... "Most famous people
immediately become suspicious and demand, "Why my garbage? " But sometimes it works. Each of these scams has its advantages and drawbacks. For instance, if you go overboard with the mass-collection method and the regular garbage man is a private hauler with an Italian name you could get snuffed! The Syndicate controls many of these firms, and they might think you're trying to move in on their territory clearly a serious mistake. It is not against the law to go through somebody's garbage can. After all, the FBI has been going through people's garbage for decades. The FBI were alleged to have stopped for about five years during the 1960s, but in June 1970, then FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover reinstated "trash covers"(FBI term for garbology). The FBI, however, uses the intelligence they derive from garbage to stifle dissent. Peoples' Garbology turns the tables on them since their leadership is forced into buying shredders and compactors for their homes to prevent trashnapping. The garbage is finally coming home to roost! Garbology was held to be constitutional by the Supreme Court in 1960 after the FBI nailed down the espionage conviction of an alleged Russian spy with incriminating material collected from the wastepaper basket of his hotel room after his arrest. The court ruled that since the goods were abandoned property, they were properly seized. Inspired by this judicial victory, police all across America, often working in cahoots with local departments of sanitation, began to bring law and order to people's garbage cans. The legality of this police garbage-snooping was finally challenged when the Los Angeles Police Department, unable to bust some depraved, dope-smoking hippies by making a purchase, called for help from the department of sanitation. The collectors agreed to empty their truck before picking up the hippies' heap so the police could inspect it later on. Sure enough, the fuzz found seeds and twigs in the trash, then broke into the house where they found the killer weed. When the case came to court, the defendants' attorney filed a motion to suppress the evidence seized during this raid, on the grounds that police garbology searching someone's garbage can without a warrant violates the provision in the Constitution against illegal search and seizure. The motion was sustained, and the evidence was suppressed. Because of a technicality these longhaired hippies were released. But California's district attorney, protesting
the loss of an "important investigative method" appealed the lower court's ruling. Appellate Court Judge Mildred Lillie, who was being considered by Nixon as a possible Supreme Court appointee at the time, wrote an opinion that supported police garbage snooping: "Is the householder entitled to protection from a routine examination of his trash after it becomes the property of the refuse collector? Of course not. The honest resident neither wants nor needs this protection." Luckily, the other judges voted four to three that someone's trash is actually part of their home, even if outside it, and therefore the police need a search warrant before they can legally garbanalyze it. The evidence was still inadmissible. District Attorney Evelle Younger appealed this ruling to the Supreme Court, which voided the state Appellate Court's ruling but refused to decide on the matter one way or the other. Although this decision ultimately allowed the lower court's ruling to stand, the justices stated they would leave the constitutionality of police garbology up to the individual states only until a clear-cut case was brought before them. Chief Justice Burger has stated he's in favor of a new look into the legality of evidence gleaned from trash and as a United States Appeals judge, he filed a dissent in a garbage case similar to Mildred Lillies'! Inevitably, there are those nay-sayers who put down garbology for being, well, trashy. But this is simply a matter of the wrong perspective, combined with abysmal ignorance. The fact is that the field of garbology is littered with many highly respected individuals. Syndicated columnist Jack Anderson is a garbologist. He unearthed the famous ITT-Dita Beard memo by examining a carbon typewriter ribbon one of his researchers found in Dita's dumpings. So historically important is Anderson's garbological investigation into J. Edgar Hoover's heap that an entire chapter in this book has been devoted to it. Author Robin Moore recruited two investigative journalists to research the Korean lobby in Washington. Using garbology, the reporters were able to unearth shredded memos linking the Koreagate scandal with Spiro Agnew. They collaborated with Jack Anderson on two columns one of which alleged that Agnew had been an associate of the indicted lobbyist Tongsun Park. It's a fact, too, that the late multi-billionaire Howard Hughes dabbled in garbology. When he suspected his longtime associate Robert Maheu of embezzling funds from Hughes Tool & Die, the reclusive magnate hired someone to purchase Maheu's trash from the local collector for fifty dollars a bag. It is rumored that despite his obsessive fear of germs, Hughes
personally analyzed the trash, which consisted mostly of kitchen slops. Had Hughes engaged the National Institute of Garbology in this endeavor, I would have given him all the Maheu muck he could handle and would have thrown in a professional garbanalysis to boot. All I would have wanted in return would have been one small bag of Hughes refuse some of the most sought after garbage in the world. In the 1970s, garbage permeated the executive branch of the federal government in the form of the Nixon administration. Haldeman means "dunghill keeper" in German, and during the Watergate hearings a former CREEP staff member admitted witnessing the shredding of incriminating documents by White House officials a day after the Watergaters were arrested. Nixon's personal lawyer admitted putting thousands of dollars of CREEP hush-money into a garbage can so that the Watergaters' families could surreptitiously pick it up. Gordon Liddy shredded dozens of hundreddollar bills which were given to him by Bernard Barker, as well as the soap wrappers from the hotels he had stayed in while he was working for CREEP. When our Anti-grime Strike Force was in Washington, the Secret Service warned Betty Ford about us, since the Fords still lived in an accessible private house in suburban Virginia. Betty told Newsweek magazine, "Pretty soon we even had to give up the garbage cans until one morning we found there were thirty-three bags of garbage that hadn't been picked up." Occasionally, however, a neophyte garbologist will bring the state of the art to a new low. Not long ago, a WCBS-TV newsman went through the garbage of a man who had axed his son to death and shot himself and his wife. Heroin addicts have taken to going through physicians' trash on the Upper East Side in Manhattan. A reporter for the National Enquirer actually returned the trash he took from Henry Kissinger. That's disgusting! But thanks to American government and industry, garbage is everywhere. From the mountains (seven climbers brought 380 pounds of garbage down from Alaska's Mt. McKinley) to the rivers (there was so much waste in Ohio's Cuyahoga River that it caught fire) to the oceans (brown with foam) there's no doubt that America has given garbage a good home. Experts predict that if America continues to produce garbage at the current rate, the year 2000 will see one billion pounds of rubbish waiting to be
garbanalyzed each day. This means we will need thousands of skilled garbologists to keep up with the demands of science. RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT The National Institute of Garbology is working hard, geared up for the tough years ahead. Already we are anticipating the technological challenges of the future. For example we are currently designing virtual garbage, so that everyone's PC can feel like an organism via excretion. We are designing ways to get into the recyle bin on Windows 95 to retrieve garbified files. We soon will be going through everyone's disgarded E-Mail. But the National Institute of Garbology is pledged to never access anyone's non-garbified files. Other current study projects at the National Institute of Garbology include ways to deal with other garbage disposal methods which possibly will be in use in the future: feeding garbage to bacteria. Our genetic engineering section is designing bacteria that make the garbage eating bacteria sick, and the garbage eating bacteria vomit up any garbage they have consumed. Some short-range projects we're working on present fascinating prospects in the here and now. At this moment National Institute of Garbology's Research and Development Branch are hard at work formulating special devices to aid garbologists in their fight against the rising tide of grime that's threatening to inundate America unless reversed immediately. In the works is a garbage dousing rod and the so-called "smart" garbage can. This trash barrel has a transmitter that's keyed by a proximity switch. When someone puts in the garbage, a bulb lights up on a giant map back in garbage central. The CIA has expressed an interest in this device, but not to worry: we won't give it the Agency. At present, our Research and Development Department has still not been able to perfect a device that would stem the growing tide of shredder utilization. At the same time, on a more hopeful note, our Public Relations Department is showing increasingly successful indications in their intensive lobbying effort on behalf of the Freedom of Garbological Information Act. Such legislation would: Make possession of a shredder a capital crime, and anyone caught in possession of such contraband would face mandatory shredding.
Make obstruction of garbological investigation a felony. Make the assault of a garbologist a compound felony. Bar local and federal police and intelligence agencies from garbology. The infant science of garbology will, in the coming years, see a pronounced branching out into related fields. For example, we will see increased attention devoted to the study and cure of mental disorders through garbotherapy. Garbage encounter sessions where patients confront each other's trash will show a ten-fold increase in the psyche of the one interpreted. Pediagarbology will emerge as doctors begin to analyze the things that infants and children throw away. And one especially intriguing area will be the field of garbagidermy, i.e., the art of stuffing garbage. Of additional benefit in this connection are the large numbers of well-paying jobs (still too early in the developmental stage to outline specifically) and the economic stimulation that constitute natural byproducts of such research and development. THE FINAL CALL TO GARBAGE I've seen a lot of garbage come down the pike. As poet Allen Ginsberg might say: I've seen the best garbage of my generation destroyed by moldiness. Smelly, naked, littering Negro streets at dawn looking for an angry garbage collector. Steel capped garage cans, kicked in, looking to be fixed. Remember one thing!!! "From dust you came, to dust you shall go."