With its low self-esteem and high urban blight, Hartford is the ultimate underdog city. Sad City Hartford documents the joys, sorrows and eccentricities of New England's Rising Star.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Meet King of Recycle

He's filthy. He's got gigantic 1980's serial killer glasses. His hooded sweatshirt wraps around his hairy, sinewy torso like a ghetto variation of the classic "sweater over the shoulders" look. He is King of Recycle.

You might have seen him stalking the garbage cans of the West End. Or maybe you noticed him dumpster diving in Asylum Hill.

We've been watching him for years, but finally worked up the nerve to ask him for an interview earlier this week. It was an enlightening experience. Video after the jump.

Contrary to what one might expect, King of Recycle doesn't spends his days skip-raiding for any sort of monetary gain. Although he collects more than 50,000 cans and bottles each year, King of Recycle is motivated by an overwhelming compulsion to see certain items recycled.

While some may write him off as a creepy whack job who frightens children, we completely disagree. We see King of Recycle as a hero. Few people are doing more for recycling within the City of Hartford than King.

So next time you think about throwing out that cereal box or soda bottle, recycle it. If you throw it away, you are making the King of Recycle weep like the Indian from that old 1970's public service announcement. And the next time you see the King of Recycle, say hello. He's a nice guy.


  1. His name is Zambo or Sambo, He lives on Tremont St, next to a garage that people can rent out. It's behind some houses. Used to live across the street from me, he does work for the neighbors sometimes. Real nice guy.

  2. I know that guy. My old landlord used to hire him for odd jobs around Kenyon Street. He is, as the previous commenter said, a very nice man.

  3. Sambo for Council.
    He's a good guy. He's informed. He's honest. He's modest; not a prima dona like so many of our self-deluded pip squeak pols. And, unlike some of our phony progressives, he actually leaves a small carbon footprint.

  4. We used to call this guy Sooty Marv because all we saw was his hairy back and we thought he was dirty. Glad to know he is an intelligent, earth-conscious guy. Way to take care of the West End!