Tuesday, 17 August 2010

British People and Their Bins

(Not quite sure what this image means but whilst Googling for wheelie bin based pictures, I found this one. It has the air of a new sub-genre of dogging that is bin and back alley based, either that or a new fetish where upon you find wheelie bins a turn-on. Lovely. Any advocates or either practice please make yourself known in the comments section)

I don't know what it is about Brits and their waste (and receptacles of that waste) but we are obsessed with it, nay, nigh on in love with waste. We love arguing about rubbish, complaining about rubbish, dedicating front pages to news stories about rubbish and we get very precious about our rubbish and how we dispose of it and the rights we have, as Brits, to special waste status. And woe betide any fucker going through our rubbish...

No other country is so bothered about rubbish.

I suppose we have long has special status here in the UK, fortunate enough to chuck whatever we wanted away into seemingly endless holes in the ground, rarely recycling and rarely setting fire to it. The terrible environmental impact of this laissez-faire attitude has put all of this to an end, we need to find new solutions and as we do so, our very British attitude to waste rises it's nimbyish head.

We get very upset about local government investigating our waste in order to get us to recycle and cut down on it and that nimby attitude means that plants to treat and burn waste take an eternity to get planning permission, all the while we keep chucking rubbish in ever shrinking holes and fight in ridiculous bin wars.

I always thought this silly malaise only effected the bourgeoisie but I too have become afflicted.

I live in a London Borough that does not use wheelie bins, so our waste is collected in black bags with hardened receptacles for green waste and another for recycled stuff. This has two problems, first up was pikey sods ripping open our bags and sifting through for stuff that was of use to them. I actually caught one of them at it once, she was trying to fish out the skeleton of an old PC and I had to fend her off with swear words and a raised fist.

The second issue is that wild animals, such as foxes or feral cats, can attack bin bags at night with great aplomb and to be clear, I use quality bin bags, not them poxy thin ones and spill the fetid contents all over my drive.

So I have taken to lobbying Enfield Borough Council to get wheelie bins, the same wheelie bins that many parts of Britain complain so fervently about but where we are, whether its wild creatures or foraging gypos, we need them to protect our precious rubbish.

How British am I?


  1. We didn't have wheelie bins in my 'hood either. But, everyone used bags (store bought black ones or council provided orange ones for recycling) placed inside metal or plastic bin containers.

  2. I actually caught one of them at it once, she was trying to fish out the skeleton of an old PC and I had to fend her off with swear words and a raised fist

    Boris johnson eat yer heart out hahahahaha "OIK"

  3. I didn't know whether to tell you off for being middle-class or middle-aged about your rubbish fetish.

    When it comes to rubbish disposal, we have turned backwards from the weekly collection to alternating fortnightly cycles of rubbish and rubbish that is mainly paper based. Yet visit Paris and you'll see almost daily rubbish collections and if you need to dispose of a fridge, you can take it to certain collection local collection points where it will be disposed of for FREE. Here if you have a heavy object that you cannot get to the dump, that will cost you upwards of £20 to get the council to collect (the same goes for Epping Council and this Norfolk council where I am serving my self-imposed exile).

    Then you have the self-important jobsworth binmen who won't empty a bin if the lid is more than 4mm open because it presents a "health and safety" issue. This isn't a Daily Mail fabrication, I saw some of these morons being interviewed on TV the other week. It wasn't that long ago that you could slip your friendly refuse collector money for a drink and they'd throw your old sofa in the back of the crusher with a sly smile, safe in the knowledge that their Christmas tip was safe. Those were indeed the days.

    I don't care about the environment. I don't care about the next big threat to civilisation. It all gets sent to China to poison the little children, so when you accidently put some paper in your regular rubbish and the council sues you for it, remember the containers of our rubbish being shipped to the third world for environmentally-sound "disposal". Then think of the children who are being poisoned by mercury and other heavy metals from the stuff you no longer wanted. Why through out an old PC when you could sell it for parts on eBay or even give it to a recycling centre. But in that motherboard and circuitry is poisonous materials waiting to be "recovered" in China or wherever it might have been sold to.

    I am so sorry, but I did my share of washing out baked bean tins, but the hypocrisy that trickles down through our society from government down to those in the underclass who can afford holidays on my tax money has left me so jaded and fucking cynical at this world that I can only roll my eyes and sneer at how dumb we are all becoming. Because the same people complaining about the tuna becoming instinct are the same people who jet off around the world, sending more CO2 into the atmosphere than several fleets of 4x4s.

    Grumble, moan, spit!

  4. Bourgeois, huh? Middle-class huh?

    As Marx didn't quite say 'the wheelie bin in its turn achieves an independent existence over against the individuals, so that the latter find their conditions of existence predestined, and hence have their position in life and their personal development assigned to them by their wheelie bin, become subsumed under it'.

    There is of course a lot of that sort of thing about

  5. Ellie:

    Well, I'm afraid I'm demanding a wheelie bin.


    Nice to see you down here mate and to be clear she was a right shit bag. Nice joke by the way...


    Your comment is full of the British waste malaise, I forgot to mention that if my recycling bins are not at the very edge of my property they will not get them, even if that means moving 2 feet.


    I think you can guess the vibe, BTW, I cannot leave a comment at yours, it blocks me?

    white rabbit:

    I have no idea what comment means but I think I like it.

  6. Here's a crazy idea, maybe if we didn't create or consume so much rubbish then disposal would be less of a problem?

  7. Highlander:

    Of course, the UK has had an awful attitude to waste for some time.

  8. Dude always take the hard drive out of any PC's you throw away. Crikey all your old work and ideas would get out there.

  9. Hy Doogie, don't worry, hard drive wasn't in there but the pikey thought it was, I smashed it to bits with a mallet. It's actually quite hard to kill a hard drive isn't it?

  10. Sorry, Daniel. I fixed the problem. Yeah, I assume a pikey sod is bad, but I'd never before heard the expression. Given you line of work, I assume you appreciate how vastly different language is between our countries sometimes. Even "wheelie bins" is foreign. And so English at the same time. Even when I say it in my Mississippi accent it sounds English. Yep.

  11. Brent:

    Cool, means I can pop back over and leave my thoughts again. As for the differences in our two versions of English, they are huge but I am very tickled by the thought of you saying "wheelie-bins" in your marvellous Southern drawl.


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