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Dumpster Diving by Lars Eighner

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“Between us are the rat-race millions who have confounded their selves with the objects they grasp.. ” (Page 119). A quote from Lars Eighner’s nonfiction informative essay of “On Dumpster Diving”. Here Eighner is simply stating how society now mainly relies on materialistic objects, and how they’ve confused themselves by these materialistic objects. Eighner shows us how we are being too caught up with objects, and that’s not the way life should be lived.

Eighner is basically telling us that even though these objects may be important in some way, they aren’t what we need in life, and that the real meaning in these objects, if there are any, should be sentimental values, such as memories.

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Lars Eighner states, “I began Dumpster diving about a year before I became homeless. ” (Page 107). through this quote, we know that Eighner undoubtedly has had experience on the experience of Dumpster diving. through the essay, he speaks from his own personal experiences and views about society.

“I have learned much as a scavenger.

I mean to put some of what I have learned down here, beginning with the practical art of Dumpster diving and proceeding to the abstract. ” (Page108). And by “abstract”, Eighner simply means the ideas and thoughts that he derived from his experience as a Dumpster diver. Her later perceives the world in a new light, seeing society as materialistic, and that he himself has gone through a “transience of being materialistic”. From Dumpster diving, Eighner says,” This has not quite converted me to a dualist but It has made me some headway in that direction.

I do not suppose that ideas are immortal, but certainly mental things are longer-lived than other material things. ” (Page 118). Eighner, in a way is saying that he believes that materialistic objects are not as important as the thoughts behind them, hoarding things that may have little to no value in reality is rather pointless when they can be easily tarnished or destroyed. This is considered as his basis of his thoughts/ beliefs from Dumpster diving. “Once I was the sort of person who incests material objects with sentimental value, Now I no longer have those things, but I have those sentiments yet. (Page 118). Eighner experiences what he himself is trying to teach the audience, at one point in his life, he was also materialistic, and possibly even entirely the opposite of how he views the world now. As Eighner lost these objects, he began to realize that these objects have truly no meaning behind them, the true meaning is in yourself, and your memories themselves. Eighner compels the audience that even Dumpsters have their fair share of sad memories and objects. “Dumpster things are often sad – abandoned teddy bears, shredded wedding books, despaired-of sales kits.

I find many pets lying in state in Dumpsters. Although I hope to get off the streets so that Lizbeth can have a long and comfortable old age, I know she too will go into a Dumpster. I will have no better place for her. ” (Page 117) Eighner tells the audience of the sad things that he’s found in the Dumpsters, and also relates that one day, even his dear loyal pal, Lizbeth will also be found there, and this shows the readers a softer side of him, which not only displays how Dumpsters hold memories that people wish to discard, but living animals/ carcasses that appeal to the audiences’ emotions. Many times in my travels, I have lost everything but the clothes I was wearing and Lizbeth. The things I find in Dumpsters, the love letters and rag dolls of so many lives remind me of this lesson.. ” (Page 119), we are shown Eighner’s emotions, that he also sees a part of these peoples’ lives through their discarded objects. And he admits that he has seen the saddest of sad, and that he has learned about humanity through Dumpster diving, and would probably never have learned it elsewhere.

Lars Eighner has learned from Dumpster diving the use of material objects in society that have been abandoned way too many times. He shows the audience that objects are not what we need in life to hold sentimental value. These objects may be lost, and tarnished along the way, but in the end, it’s our memories and feelings that hold steady, and cannot be tarnished.

Cite this Dumpster Diving by Lars Eighner

Dumpster Diving by Lars Eighner. (2017, Jan 22). Retrieved from https://graduateway.com/dumpster-diving-by-lars-eighner/

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