By Lauren McKinney
Aaron Wilson of Bucknell Avenue is a new man. A resident of Swarthmore for 25 years, Wilson had relied on various signs and signals to figure out when the Borough trucks and subcontractors were collecting various stuff. “When I saw my neighbors put out the recycling bins I would run around the house collecting all the bottles, cans, and newspapers that I could, and then haul that bin out to the street as fast as possible. Or I would come home late from work and see bags full of branches by the neighbor’s curb, and I would make the kids stop doing homework so they could collect branches and tie them up in the dark.”
What made Wilson finally get his act together? “Well, it didn’t happen right away. A couple of years ago I joined NextDoor and started asking everyone there. I’d be like, ‘Hey, is trash day tomorrow?’ But no one ever knew. Then people would start complaining about Borough offices not being open on Friday, or the roundabout’s potential fatality rates, and eventually someone would take a photo of dog poop, or a child’s tiny pink mitten.” He paused and chuckled.
“Where was I?” he continued. “Oh yes. I was in that place where you pay your parking tickets when I realized that’s the Borough office. I asked a nice lady named Elyse about bulk trash. She told me it’s the third Thursday of every month. It’s all on a schedule! It’s not random. Then the Borough Manager herself, Jane Billings, came out of her office to tell me ‘You do realize all this information is on the website, right?’”
Making sure it wasn’t Friday, the Swarthmorean fact-checking team visited, and spotted Ms. Billings as the one wearing a T-shirt that says “It’s on the website.” “I’ll even show you the actual website if you don’t believe me,” she said in a steely voice. Sure enough, her computer verified that the Borough of Swarthmore does have a website. And all these dates are indeed on said website. We thanked Ms. Billings for her time. But we had one more question: “When are Borough Council meetings?”