Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Monkeys in suits

No, dead monkeys in suits. No, the festering goo left behind by the dead monkeys in suits.

Still smarter than the idiots in charge of our local council.

They've just implemented the most ridiculous scheme I've ever heard of for recycling. Now, instead of it being a voluntary thing that makes you feel all warm and glowy because you're helping the environment by putting your empty bottles in a crate for the special lorry to come and pick up once a fortnight, it's a mandatory thing, executed in the most impractical way, that makes you feel resentful towards the whole idea of planet-saving.

At least, it does me. And I'm a freaking vegetarian. I cut up 6-pack holders so they won't kill little birdies. I love the environment. Plant trees and everything. And I think this new recycling shit is just bloody stupid.

The basis of it is this three bin system: three large, ugly-ass wheelie bins into which we separate all our household rubbish. Biodegradable 'wet' refuse in one, recyclable plastics and cans in another, and unrecyclable things to go in a landfill. With me so far? Separating out rubbish, sensible, yes? Of course it is.


I'm sure it sounded like a really good idea when the chief monkey came up with it. Only I bet the chief monkey never has to cook a meal, change a baby, or empty a bathroom bin. Because now, instead of scraping potato peelings, pizza boxes and cat food tins into the bin in the kitchen, everything has to be put into separate piles. The potato peelings go straight into the green-lidded bin. Yep, straight in. And they'll stay there until the bin is tipped up into a garbage truck at the end of the week.

Week-old potato peelings. Nice.

But the monkeys thought of this. Wrap all the 'wet refuse' in newspaper, they say. Er, actually I'd intended on reading the newspaper. Oh, you mean the free ones? Fair enough. But we only get those every other week or so. Plenty of people don't get them at all. And besides, it's rather insulting to all the local newspaper offices--not to mention the trees, who probably don't appreciate being so recyclable. Also, newspaper isn't terribly watertight. The rotting potato-peelings will ooze through.

There is a contingency plan, though. They kindly gave us a roll of biodegradable refuse sacks to put the oozy stuff into. Er, except the roll is just a long tube with perforations. You tear a bit off, about a foot long it is, tie a knot in the end to make a bag, and it's just about big enough for the potato, carrot, squash etc peelings from a nice pan of soup. So you tie a knot in the other end--remember, it comes as a tube--and put it in the green bin, and get another one. After about thirty seconds of cooking, you realise you've run out. So you need more.

But you know what? You can only buy them at the council offices, and they cost £6.99 for 50. Just for purposes of comparison, a pack of Tesco Value Refuse Sacks contains 30 black bags which hold... ooh, 50 litres each? That pack costs...wait for it...74p. That's 3p per bag, or 0.06p/litre. The special council ones, which hold 10 litres (depending, I suppose, on where you tie the knot) cost 14p each. Or, 1.4p/litre.

And the Tesco ones fit in my kitchen bin. Which is shiny and silver and a damn sight more attractive than the one outside. Plus, it's right next to where I actually cook.

So the council is making lots of money from this. Maybe they're getting a cut from petrol prices too, because did I mention that there are plenty of things you need to drive to a council waste-whatever site, like glass bottles? Also, you can only buy the special tiny knotty bags from the council office--which I think is 10 miles away. Well, that's certainly better for the environment than picking them up with the weekly shopping.

Oh, and I can't let it go without mentioning the nappucino. I mean, I have kittens so I don't have to piss around with the whole diaper-changing shit. But you know, if hell does actually freeze over and I find myself in charge of a noisy, puking, shitting infant, you can betcha by golly wow I will not be hand-washing cloth nappies. They can stink up the green bin. Or the black bin. Or the doormat of the monkey-in-a-suit who thought up this whole stupid scheme.

1 comment:

  1. How irritating! Irrational. Ack. I'm sure the monkeys who first conceived this had grand ideas, but what happened to making the whole thing conducive? They should at least match or beat the prices for those bags you can find elsewhere.

    Had no idea this was now mandatory for you.