I went to Hains Point this morning at 7:00 to run two short loops. If you know Hains Point, you of course know the concrete barrier that is next to the golf course parking lot. Well, before running I took off my shirt and placed it on top of the barrier. And then I leaned my DC Tri water bottle upright against the barrier.
Fast forward 25 minutes. I finish my first lap, and my shirt and water bottle are GONE. I'm like..... what?
Then I see a park employee with a punch stick, picking up trash, about 50 feet away. I run over to talk with him.
Me: "Did you see a shirt and water bottle over there?" (pointing at the only concrete barrier in sight)
Him: (stares at me for 5 seconds as if I had asked him a deep philosophical question) "Water bottle? I punched it."
Me: (realizing that he has punched a hole in my water bottle as if it was a banana peel) "You punched it?"
Me: (dumbfounded that this is actually occurring) "Um, do you know where the shirt and water bottle are now?"
Him: "Well, they are probably in a trash can near whatever barrier they were on."
'Probably'? 'Whatever barrier'? Are you being vague because you have thrown away sooooo many shirts and sooooo many water bottles in the past 25 minutes that you simply *can't* remember which barrier they came from or which trash can they went to? Or are you simply embarrassed that a shirtless guy is asking you which trash can you put his shirt in?
And yes, my DC Tri water bottle (complete with hole) and shirt (luckily no hole, I checked) were indeed in the trash.
I liked that bottle.
So, consider yourself warned: Do not put anything, anywhere, at any time, at Hains Point, or it may end up in a trash can.
you can't really bash the guy for doing his job.
which is cleaning up the park from unattended waterbottles and clothing.
I agree. His job is to keep the park clean. It's a park, not your backyard.
I disagree. This is a park... where people bike, run, play golf. Its obvious that a t-shirt and water bottle are of value. There was no need to put a whole in the bottle nor was there a need to be vague and unhelpful as the OP described the employee to be. Gees when did people stop THINKING?
vatriathlete/merlinkim: Points taken, but I respectfully disagree that leaving items unattended in a park is unacceptable. Also, I would agree with you if these were two items thrown randomnly and separately on the grass, but I think it is different when the items are laid out in such a way that they clearly belong together.
Just my opinion, all viewpoints welcome.
I think it's pretty brave to leave a water bottle sitting in Hains Point with the intention of drinking out of it later. Plenty of people walking around down there who look like they might take a whiz in it just for giggles.
If you leave anything unattended and out in the open in DC then don't expect it to be there when you get back!
Luckily, it wasn't anything of value - this time! (although the DC Tri water bottles are a hot commodity)
I'm surprised the water bottle didn't end up on Ebay. :)
Totally a hot commodity. I would buy one from the DC Tri shop if they were available for sale!! Not so sure about buying one from eBay :)
I'm going to have to agree with Justin(vatriathlete) and Ihan (merlinkim) here for the exact reasons that they've given. Well, that and to encourage more male bonding in a public forum.
I run on portions of Hains Pt every M-Thu mornings between 5:30-6:00 AM througout the year. I sometime see stuff that one consider valuable ... a nice clean shirt, a sweater, a blanket, etc. It is sometimes obvious that those valuables were left behind from the previous day/weekend from picnicers and tourists. How is a guy cleaning up the park able to tell if one item belongs to a runner who is running around the park and another belonging to a tourist/picnicer who left it from behind from the previous day? There are joggers out there all the time and sometimes they forget to pick up their items afterward.
I've seen clean shirts and cameras left on park benches early in the mornings. I've left my bike helmet there one time because I forgot to pick it up from the curb after I had racked my bike. We've had training tris where people have left behind pumps, transition bags, and shoes. Those are valuable stuff. How does a trash collector know which was left behind accidentally and which was just put there to be retrieved later by a jogger?
Like Ihan said, it's a park not your back yard. It is the job of the cleaning guy to clean the park. If he doesn't then the public will criticize him for not keeping the park clean. His boss will criticize him for not doing his job.
As far as the need to put a hole in the bottle, they don't do it be to be an ass. It's how they pick up trash. They walk around with a picker and stab at trash to put it in the garbage bag. They don't caress what they preceived as trash with the kind of care that you would with your personal items.
And bfrank ... check out Ebay Vietnam. Apparently water bottles with holes is the new rave over there ;)
I got my DC Tri Club bottle stolen from my desk in my office last year. I was so upset that with the help of Bryan I put up a LOST sign in the lunchroom. Alas, it never came back.
i have one of the old style water bottles that the dctriclub used to give out, you are more than welcome to it,
its larger than the current specialized versions, and uglier.
i have to agree though the newer dctriclub water bottles are very useful.
now i know why we need the tri gear watcher volunteers at every sat training race/brick workout.
Doesn't this just mean that Hains Point needs a lost and found?