Friday, 30 October 2020 13:40

COLUMN: Bojangles trash in full bloom along N.C. roads

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I think most of us who live here in North Carolina would agree it is a beautiful place to live. Regardless of the region in which you live, this state has something to offer just about everyone. 


I know people who prefer the mountains and some who like the cities. I live near the coast, and other than the occasional hurricane, it's a pretty nice place to live. 

I've been to Raleigh a lot, but I don't know it like I know my own area. It's nice, I guess, but I moved away from congested areas and don't really want to live in another. 

If you ask anyone about where they live in the world, one of the first things they will tell you is what their area is known for. New England is known for seafood and maple syrup. California, though having large areas that are not, seems to be known primarily for the beaches and the sun. Florida is known for that big theme park whose mascot is a big happy rodent. 

My part of North Carolina should be known as the birthplace of Pepsi or the colonial capital. We are becoming known for something else. Drive from Beaufort to Atlantic, Morehead City to Havelock, New Bern to Washington, Greenville to Wilson. You will more than certainly see the most invasive crop since kudzu or those people who try to get you to extend the warranty on your car.

You will see Bojangles trash. 

I don't mean to single out Bojangles. Bojangles is a perfectly fine establishment with delicious food and such. I don't think I have ever gotten anything I did not like at Bojangles. The sweet tea is about the sweetest the south has to offer and in these parts, that's a plus. 

I don't see any of the dine-in customers dumping their trash anywhere other than the receptacles in the restaurant. That's partly because Bojangles has friendly folks that will sweep in and take your trash from the table and throw it away for you. Additionally, if you have ever eaten inside of a Bojangles, you will note the average age of a Bojangles dine-in customer is about 114 years old, and they have better manners than anyone else. So, today, I am talking to you, Mr. and Mrs Drive-Thru Window Customer and your children.

I know the fine folks at Bojangles will clear your table when you're done. That is a courtesy they provide for the customers. They do not provide roadside service. You cannot devour an entire Big Bo Box, a gallon of tea, and a Bo Berry biscuit and leave your garbage on the side of the road. You see that Toyota Prius with the big Bojangles logo on it? You know you have. That's a corporate vehicle, not a roving band of trash picker-uppers who will follow you to wherever you are eating and clear the picnic table, hood, or front seat of your SUV. 

I conducted an informal investigation that consisted of me not talking to Bojangles customers or staff at all. The investigation consisted of me driving around and looking at the trash on the side of the road to see which fast food place had the most roadside deposits. I am obligated to inform readers that this was not a scientific examination and was just something I did to kill time driving to and from work.

Additionally, I have not eaten any Bojangles food nor consumed any ridiculously sweet tea in the process of this investigation. Truth be told, I had KFC, but that was due to the fact that I only had five dollars and KFC had the most food for the least money. Please note, this is not an endorsement nor and indictment of any chicken retailer. 

I saw a few Burger King piles and one or two from McDonald’s. I did not see any Wendy's or Zaxby's and when I saw a guy tossing a yellow box with red writing on it from his pickup, I chased him down and asked him and he told me it wasn't Bojangles trash, but from some place called Beau Hahn Glaze. I had never heard of this place, so he got a free pass. 

I'm just a journalist and not a guy who goes around enforcing garbage laws, so I kinda just went on my way when he politely offered to turn my head into a clove hitch knot if I didn't, and I quote, “buzz off and stop asking about my (expletive deleted) garbage and go back to where I (another expletive deleted) came from and mind my own (expletive about my parentage) business.”

To sum up this investigation, I have determined that eastern North Carolina's bumper crop of Bojangles trash is in full bloom, I should not chase down pickups, and I should mind my own business. I'll leave the investigating to the reporters. 

I did talk to one Bojangles employee who asked that he remain anonymous, so if you see Elmer Farquarson of Cumberland County, you can tell him I did my best to remember the fake name he wanted to use, but forgot it because I had written it on a Bojangles napkin I threw away.

In a trash can.

Joe Weaver, a native of Baltimore, is a husband, father, pawnbroker and gun collector. From his home in New Bern, he writes on the lighter side of family life.