AKRON (Oct. 12, 2012)—I'm hauling all those worn-out tires piling up behind my shed to Kentucky, to take advantage of a “scrap tire amnesty.”
It runs from Oct. 8-13, so by the time you read this I'm probably on my way back. It's a great deal—instead of paying that exorbitant disposal fee of $1 per tire when you buy new tires in Kentucky, you can haul them to state disposal locations and be done with them at no cost.
Damn if I'm paying $4 to get rid of those things. It's a tax, you know, and taxes always are evil, right?
I've seen and, of course, tried many of the typical ways of saving money on that huge fee. I used to check out the brands of tires lying in the strainers and along the banks of the mighty Cuyahoga River when I was kayaking, but I guess the “toss in it in the river” mentality in Ohio is passÃ&Copy;. I don't see many BFGs, Firestones or Goodyears anymore.
Turning that tire inside out to make a planter is a wonderfully creative solution. Also a paean to Akron's previous title of Rubber City or the Tire Capital.
My neighbors, snobs that they are, apparently have no appreciation of art. Especially in winter, when the set of 20 flower-pot tires arranged around my front yard just look like used tires with dirt in them. They turned me in to the city officials, who don't understand art, either, and I was ordered to remove them. I complied by throwing them in the river.
I got what I thought was a great idea from the zoo. Gorillas and monkeys love to frolic in tires swinging from a rope, so I hung one from a big oak in my backyard. My grandkids enjoyed it for at least 30 minutes. Now it collects water and mosquitoes.
I've been kind of stuck for awhile now. I know you can turn used tires into actual sculptures, but you need artistic talent for that, which I lack. Also, they aren't much good as a fuel source for barbecuing. The neighbors weren't too happy with that, either. Like I said, snobs.
I'd love to chain a bunch of scrap tires together, haul them out to Lake Erie and sink them as an artificial reef/fish habitat. Except that doesn't work. As has been shown elsewhere, the tires tend to wander across the bottom because of storms and currents, and scour everything in their path.
Ah, such a dilemma. Now I can understand why the good people of Kentucky just wait until amnesty-time to get rid of their used tires, thereby avoiding the onerous disposal fee. It's easier than trying to reuse them, and you save $4.
I just hope they don't notice the Ohio plates on my truck.
Noga is the editor of Rubber & Plastics News.