Just shovel your sidewalk. Do it.

“For properties that are not on a city sidewalk plow route, city ordinances require that adjacent property owners clear snow and ice from sidewalks. Business owners have 12 hours following a winter storm to do so and residential owners have 24 hours following a storm.” —City of Portland website

Come on people! Keeping the sidewalk clear is a small price we property and business owners have to pay to live in Portland. Sure, there are hundreds of miles of sidewalks but all we have to do is pitch in and clear our own little stretches. Life gets so much better when we work together.

If you have a neighbor who’s elderly or has a disability, give them a hand. If you have a deadbeat neighbor, ask them to do their part. If they refuse, report them at Fix it! Portland. There are city fines and citations for people like them.

I’m normally not a huge fan of snitching but I’ve had it up to here with slipping and sliding around on lazy people’s bits of uncleared sidewalk. It pains me to watch people who have to walk in the street with cars whizzing by, missing them by inches. I have a sneaking suspicion that the car drivers are the same people not shoveling their walks — because they drive everywhere. That circular cause-and-effect loop makes my head feel like exploding.

Please take this song to heart and use it as a reminder that when the snow is done coming down, it’s time to get to work on your walk. Do it for me. Do it for them. Do it for your own soul.


Now the snow finally over and its done coming down
And it’s clogging up the sidewalks on every street in town
It’s time to grab a shovel and its time to clear a path
So folks a trying to get to work don’t fall on their ass

Tick tock, tick tock, time to shovel your sidewalk
Tick tock, tick tock, time to shovel it now
Tick tock, tick tock, time to shovel your sidewalk
Tick tock, tick tock, time to shovel it now

Shovel for the mailman bringing Amazon to you
And for the paramedic who has got to push on through
For the silver-haired old darlin’ not too steady on her feet
Don’t make her fall and break a hip and lay there ‘side the street

For the fellah in a wheelchair and the blind man with a stick
For the kid who’s trying to get to school and learn arithmetic
For the mother with the baby and the groceries in her arms
Dont make her walk out in the street where she’ll get hit by a car

So scrape your sidewalk clean and throw down a little sand
And not just cause it’s polite, cause it’s the law of the land
Yeah, shovel cause it’s good, shovel cause it’s right
Shovel cause if you don’t, I’ll call the cops on you tonight

Tick tock, it's time to shovel your sidewalk.

Tick tock, it’s time to shovel your sidewalk.

Troy R. Bennett

About Troy R. Bennett

Troy R. Bennett is a Buxton native and longtime Portland resident whose photojournalism has appeared in media outlets all over the world.