After a long holiday weekend, it's a chore taking all those empty pop bottles and beer cans back to the store to collect the deposit.
And how much fun is it to haul the recycling tub out to the curb each week? But bottle deposits and recycling drives cut down on trash, and we know they're the right thing to do. Besides, you usually can get one of the kids to help, especially if he wants to use the car later.
Times are changing.
Within a year and a half, countries in Europe must have plans for recycling automobiles at the end of their useful life, thanks to a directive from the European Union.
The requirements will vary by country, but generally that means automakers must have sophisticated disassembly sites that separate the metals from the plastics and the fibers, just the way you do on recycling day.
Some of that already is being done in Europe and North America because it's the responsible thing to do, and it's frugal, especially with the price of many raw materials being so expensive.
But all this ecological responsibility also cuts down on junkyards.
A lot of people think that's a good thing. When they drive by a junkyard they just see all those rotting automotive carcasses, not the shiny dreams that ad writers once lionized to entice consumers.
I don't know about you, but when I was younger I spent some happy and productive hours poking around junkyards. No, it wasn't because TV junkman Fred Sanford was my hero. When you want -- or need -- to keep older vehicles on the road, a junkyard can be a great place to find previously owned parts at a reasonable price.
And when you find what you need, it can be a moving experience, whether it's an engine block for a big Healey, a carburetor for a Grand Prix or a gasoline tank for a TR-6.
Come to think of it, maybe Fred Sanford is my hero.
You may e-mail Edward Lapham at