A small group of college students is out to ruin the reputation of every other college student in town. What’s worse is that it looks like a done deal and it could take years to recover.
For years and years, the college students at SUNY Brockport in western New York have worked diligently to build their reputation as the wildest bunch of immature jerks this side of the Mississippi.
Each class of graduating seniors bequeaths that tradition upon the juniors who will soon be seniors, “Rent a house off campus and act like an idiot. Get drunk. Throw loud parties. Trash the rental house. Trash the rental neighborhood. Yeeeaaaaaahh!!!.”
And they do it at 3:00 o’clock in the morning at the top of their lungs.
The college students are convinced that the rules don’t apply to them. They steal furniture right off their neighbor’s front porch. And they steal concrete lawn furniture from another neighbor’s front yard.
It’s as if they never heard the words, Thou shalt not steal.
You say, “What’s new. You can hear the same story in just about any college town across America.”
What’s new is that some college students living in Brockport this summer are doing their absolute best to destroy the reputation of college students and to undo all those years of hard work by the party animals.
If it’s three strikes and you’re out, then the reputation of college students is in trouble. These college students are polite. They apologize when they screw up, and the actually help to clean the mess they made.
What’s going on here? Has the world turned upside down?
Strike one came two weeks ago, on a Saturday afternoon, after a landlord p a huge pile of trash outside a rental house, at least 72 hours before he was legally allowed to put the trash by the curb. When you looked down the street, instead of seeing a house with a beautiful bed of tiger lilies outside, all you could see was this huge pile of garbage.
Section 21-7 G of the Brockport Village Code is quite clear on when you are allowed to put your garbage out at the curb and when you have to remove the empty garbage cans.
It is standard practice in just about every village, town, and city in the United States. But, the Village of Brockport never bothers to enforce that section of the code.
So instead of looking at the garbage all weekend, I walked down the street and knocked on the door.
A polite young man answered, apologized for the mess his landlords had made, and volunteered to help clean it up. I almost died of shock.
It was a classic case of a Good Tenant, Bad Landlord.
Any kid will run any errand for you, if you ask at bedtime.
That same week, about a block and a half away there were still 2 garbage cans at curbside outside the infamous yellow house on Adam’s Street 36 hours after this week’s trash pick-up.
A major storm was passing through the area, and the gusts of wind were pretty strong. One of the trash cans blew over into the middle of the street and cars were swerving around it.
But the college students in the infamous yellow house seemed absolutely clueless that their garbage cans were causing a traffic hazard right outside their house.
They just parked their cars in the driveway and walked in the front door of the house as if it were perfectly normal to hear the squeal of brakes as cars swerved to avoid the gray garbage can blowing up and down the street at noontime on Friday.
Last week the same thing happened. The Village officials were notified about it – from the Code Enforcement Officer, to the Mayor, to the Village Trustees – but the Village officials did nothing except ask each other questions.
But that is exactly what everyone expects from the government. The Federal, State, county and town governments are all totally clueless, so why should the Village government be any different?
It was shaping up to be another weekend of looking at garbage cans rolling around the street.
Then, at 4:52 PM on Friday afternoon, as I was headed out for a run along the Eire Canal, I noticed a college student picking up the garbage cans outside the yellow house. So I walked over and said, “Thank you.”
When I asked him if he was aware of the local law about putting your trash cans away after garbage pick-up, he said that the landlord had never told them about it.
Then he floored me. He apologized for leaving the trash can outs, and he promised to do a better job in the future.
I kid you not. That’s what he said. But then, as I was walking away, he went one step further and asked, “If there is anything else I can do let me know.”
I almost had a heart attack. But instead I replied, “If you could please take that red folding lawn chair off the front lawn when you’re done with it, I really appreciate it. Every time I open my living room curtains I have to look at it sitting on the front lawn.”
By the time I got back to my house, the battered red lawn chair that had been on the front lawn for weeks had disappeared into the infamous yellow house.
Only time will tell, but think about it. This is the same infamous yellow house where last year the Police Chief had to pull into the driveway and break up a drinking party on the front lawn during Barf the Port Weekend.
It’s the same infamous yellow house where last year the bimbos disrupted traffic by sunbathing on the front lawn in their bikinis.
What’s going on here?
The college students in the infamous yellow house delivered strike two and strike three wasn’t far behind.
The day before, as I was driving downtown to do some shopping in the Village, I noticed young man putting a pile of garbage and recycling out by the curb outside a college rental house across the street from the old Nativity BVM School.
As I jogged up to the Erie Canal for my run out to Redman Road, I noticed a young man sitting on a rock outside that same house, smoking a cigarette. So I walked across the gravel parking lot and asked him if he was aware of the local law about garbage.
He said, “No. But I’ll move it.”
A short time later it was “Strike Three, You’re Out” for the reputation of college students in Brockport. When I returned from my run along the Erie Canal, the garbage was gone.
Will wonders never cease?
As I walked home, shaking my head at how polite and considerate those three different college students had been, I noticed another pile of garbage outside a house on Holley Street across from the Village Park.
That pile of garbage has been there all weekend, and everyone who brought their kids to pay in the playground has had to look at it, but the Village Officials have totally ignored the situation.
On Sunday, another pile of garbage appeared miraculously outside a house at the corner of Brockway and Chappell Street, and it is still there in clear violation of the local law.
Maybe someone should knock on the doo of those rental houses and ask the tenants if they know that it is a health hazard and a violation of the law to put their garbage out four days before the scheduled trash pick-up.
You just might find that the landlords never bothered to tell the tenants, and that the tenants will be polite and remove the garbage.
I know it is not our responsibility to do that. It’s the responsibility of the Village officials, but they don’t seem the slightest bit interested in cleaning up the Village. You tell them about a health hazard and they do nothing anyway.
Maybe it’s time for the residents of Brockport to take matters into their own hands. Next time you see a pile of garbage on the street outside a rental house during the weekend, walk over, knock on the door, and ask the college students if they know that it is a health hazard and a violation of the law.
They just might apologize and move the garbage off the street.
Try it. You just might like it.