I’m sitting in the garden, at the laptop, for the first time since September (I’d hazard an accurate guess at) and I’m here because I wanted to be, which sounds a bit weak, but it hadn’t been my intention to get the laptop out, I was going to sit here and read Lisey’s Story by Stephen King and catch some of this glorious sunshine before it all gets cold and shitty again by the weekend. Then something happened that threw all of that to hell.
I saw Fishwife. That’s mild-mannered Clark Kent-like Fishwife and he was getting annoyed with a bin man. This was indeed an event. But then I noticed that my bin had a sticker on it and I started to put two and two together and rushed downstairs to join in. I love a good argument with a council contractor. Unfortunately for all concerned I arrived too late to be of any help. Fishwife stood there looking at me with real fire in his eyes. “I spoke to them about this two weeks ago when they didn’t take it then. Bastards.” Bloody hell!
On closer inspection of the, unfortunately now discarded, sticker I saw that it was stating that you can no longer put animal bedding or sawdust in the compost bin, but if the sawdust or bedding is from a vegetarian animal then it can be put in our own compost bins… Which begs the question why they won’t collect it, vegetarian animal pooh is less of a health and safety risk than standing next to someone with a cold – fact! The council will collect cooked food, such as rotting meat, but some duck shit mixed with some sawdust is going to kill their binmen? Do me a favour.
What the council now want you to do is, if you don’t want to compost it yourself (which we do, but you know weekly sawdust in two small compost bins?), place it in a plastic, sealed, bag and put it – a veritable cornucopia of composting perfection – into the black landfill bins. Plus, by the looks of things the bin men have been instructed to use their discretion while checking every single bin because there have been a lot of disgruntled people trying to get in contact with the council today, Fishwife amongst them.
The bin man who was arguing that Fishwife’s bin might have traces of chicken shit in them claimed that if we wanted these bins to be collected we’d literally have to sift anything resembling rabbit, guinea pig, duck or chicken shit out of it and that it probably was more advisable not to put wood shavings into the composting bins any more for the chance they might not be collected.
Is this not the most ludicrous bit of council bureaucracy you’ve ever heard? And from a Tory council no less! Someone’s obviously complained about sawdust floating around the streets and this is the council’s ham-fisted solution because we’ve had our vegetarian animal waste collected for the last 30 years and to our knowledge no one has ever died from accidentally touching some sawdust that might once have been touched by a dry rabbit turd.
Your council tax working for you!