Saturday, 14 September 2013

What A Load Of Rubbish

You might have picked up that last Tuesday, before going to A&E, I had a chat with the refuse collectors. This was because it was the fortnightly recycling collection, and they had been attaching notes to several of them saying that they were not being emptied due to having non-recyclables in them.

And I mentioned one of my pet hates. We have a block of flats (one of these modern, 3 storeys ones). I am on the ground floor, so I have a separate front door that opens onto the pavement. Next to that is my recycling bin.

Bow, I am reasonably green-minded. I am not "preachy" - few things annoy me more than those who moralise about saving the planet while hopping into their cars for very short journeys. I make sure I recycle. Some things we can - glass is one we can't, so I wash glass bottles and give them to my parents as they are near a bottle bank.

And everything else - plastic bottles, cans, paper, magazines - goes into the recycling bin. It's not too difficult. I don't have a garden, but do remember my dad often putting food waste into the compost.

And earlier this week, as I went to put some recycling out, opened the bin and yep - you've guessed it.

The normal household waste bins are round the back. And some people are too lazy at times to walk that far - much simpler to chuck it and take the approach "somebody else will do it".

I recall days in my final year of my PhD and one housemate who would cook dinner, get a coffee, things like that, and just leave the washing up. His attitude - somebody else will need to use them, so they can wash them up before they do.

Or a lady with a child in a pushchair. The child eating a chocolate bar, and when he'd finished, his mum just took the wrapper and dropped it on the pavement. Things are caught not taught.

When I travel by train, it never ceases to amaze me at the food rubbish left behind - and it's often worse right next to the bins. Even with bins positioned where the person would not even have to stand up - just reaching over would be enough. I recall travelling from Southampton Central to Basingstoke, and one of these businessmen having coffee and then, as he got up to disembark at Winchester, he just left his cup on his seat and wandered off. I picked it up, rushed after him, and handed it to him telling him he seemed to have forgotten it. After he got off, there was a tap on the window and I looked up to see him gesture at me. I was horrified - in this country we use two fingers and I simply cannot bear the Americanisation of society.

Back to the main story, so yet again, I have to take other people's household waste out of my bin (legally I'm liable if there's non-recyclables in there) and put it where it should be.

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