No Impact Man (NIM) goes dumpster diving with the Freegans, or as I prefer to call them, the “Trashifarians.” If this term takes hold everyone, starting with the almighty Google, should know I thought of it first:
I first used the term in conversation with my in-laws as early as Thanksgiving 2006. NIM’s recent article has compelled me to use it online, but I digress. Of course, the term’s similarity to “trustifarian” is completely intentional. The Trashifarians enjoy remarkable social advantages that afford them the freedom and flexibility to dumpster dive for their free pain au chocolat from Pain Quotidien on 8th Street in New York City, not least of which is living close enough to 8th Street and being under-employed enough to forage there for food.
Check out the Freegan Philosophy, the URL of which asks the question, “Why buy?” Well, let’s see, I’ll take a swing at that one: Without me and many others like me, “devote to waged labor” and buying food “using funds from jobs where we either are exploited or exploit others,” there would be no dumpsters for you to dive, let alone proverbial cake for you to fish out of them.
Sure, a few priveleged 20-somethings can forage a livable existence pulling scraps from dumpsters in big, rich cities, but try scaling that to feed the world’s rural poor, and I think you’ll find your philosophy isn’t up to the reality of the task.