Earlier this week, something happened that I will remember for a long time to come. It was Wednesday, which is the garbage pickup day for our area of town.

I’m usually at work when this occurs, so it’s a long time since I’ve seen it happen. On this day in question, however, I had to run home for something, passing the garbage truck on my way into the neighborhood and then leaving my car idling in the drive while I ran into the house.

Whilst there, I mentioned the fact that the garbage truck would soon reach our cul-de-sac to my wife (Gina the Gorgeous). Gina responded by saying that something strange had been happening for the past few months.

She told me that as the garbage truck exited the cul-de-sac, its driver performed a “toot-toot-ti-toot-toot” on his horn. She further speculated that ours might be the last street on his route and he was therefore signaling his happiness at a job well done. “Well,” I thought, “that’s as good an explanation as any, I suppose.”

As fate would have it, the truck entered our cul-de-sac just as I was strolling down the drive to my car. As it approached, I gave a little wave to the driver, as you do. I wouldn’t have given this any more thought had he not waved back enthusiastically.

Since he seemed so happy to see me, I waved once again, at which point he entered a frenzy of gesticulation with gusto and abandon using both hands while also giving the most humongous grin.

I have to admit that I was somewhat puzzled by his enthusiasm, but I felt it would be churlish of me to fail respond in kind, which I did. In hindsight, I’m sure this would have presented quite a scene had there been any spectators to see it.

It was only when the truck pulled away with a cheerful “toot-toot-ti-toot-toot” on its horn and I turned to open the door to my car that I became aware of the three little girls next door (2, 5, and 6-years-old) standing on their front porch jumping up and down and waving furiously, at which point I realized the driver hadn’t been waving at me at all.

“Well, that was embarrassing,” I thought as I sheepishly got in my car and headed back to work.