Dans Ma Rue
I'm going to start posting more about things that I often forget about. I've lived here for so long that I forget that a lot of the information I've learned came from years of living here. For instance this lovely little program the City (Mairie in French, not to be confused with your local Mairie, in my case the Mairie du 7e arrondissement. Your’s will be the district you live in) created a few years ago.
I'm not sure how helpful this will be, but the City offers a service for those who want to report trash, graffiti, potholes, road signs, trees, or junk on the street: Dans Ma Rue. Just download the app, take a photo, and send it in. The City will then send cleaning crew to collect it or fix it.
I found out about the service through a family I worked for. The mother came home and was upset because there was a dead rat outside her building (Trocadero and it's many rats). She explained it was the second time it happened, and with the app she could report it to the city, and have it removed.
I myself don't care enough. I did see a sign on the ground, on the street below, outside my window, and thought for a second to report it but then I thought ‘meh’ and closed my drapes. But I haven't seen dead animals on the street. Junk, over flowing trash cans, lopsided street signs, none of it bothers me. I guess it pays to be perpetually oblivious.
But people use it for all sorts of things. One report (the French love making their government take accountability for projects the city spends money on) says that people even report "urinators". Is it gross stumbling on a guy taking a piss, or worse a woman squatting between cars? Absolutely, but I’ve never had the Karen urge to snap a photo. Obviously busybodies with too much time on their hands.
If you're into that kind of thing you can become a reporter (Signaleurs) for the city and walk around reporting "anomalie". If anything I suppose it’s a good excuse to get outside and walking. You’ll also get to explore neighborhoods you may otherwise have ignored (if you choose to go beyond your's). I really think the City should run a program to teach seniors how to do it. It seems right up “get off my lawn” alley. Plus they can stay fit. An idea to tweet at the Mairie…
Next time you spot some unsightly junk, or an abandoned mattress is pissing you off, use the app.