"Well, there is only one piece of advice I can give you," said the wisest of wise men. "The secret of happiness is to see all the marvels of the world and never to forget the drops of oil on the spoon."

('The Alchemist' Paulo Coelho)

Monday, January 17, 2011


We British as a nation seem to have a somewhat cavalier attitude to litter. People think nothing of dropping a sweet paper or other rubbish as they walk along the street, seemingly oblivious to the litter bin just a couple of yards further on. I once knew someone who had a policy that, whenever he saw someone do that, he would pick up the object and return it to the 'owner' with the polite comment, "Excuse me, I think you dropped this." These days, he would probably be assaulted and then arrested for disturbing the peace. So this is probably not a course of action I would follow myself, although I might be tempted on occasion.
The person or persons who decided to stop  in the car park in our valley and clear out the rubbish from their car would be a prime candidate. Instead of using any of the THREE bins within a few yards of where they stopped, they decided to leave a pile of empty sandwich packages, half-drunk bottles of coke and other detritus right there on the car park. So much easier than actually getting out of the car and making the marathon trek to a bin, of course.
It does occur to me to wonder how they would feel if someone dumped a pile of rubbish in their front garden, but actually, they probably wouldn't even notice.


Yorkshire Pudding said...

Those of us who are vehemently anti-litter can start to make a difference by picking the stuff up. If we all looked after our own streets they would be so litter-free that this would send a subliminal message out to would-be litter louts - This is a litter free zone. Last summer I found myself the subject of much supportive and also bemused comment when I used graffiti spray and methylated spirits to remove a mass of ugly felt-tip graffiti from an empty shop window at Banner Cross. It took about an hour. Doing stuff rather than pursuing the ignorant culprits is most likely the best way forward.

cheshire wife said...

Litter louts probably would notice litter in their own garden but just don't see it anywhere else. It is one rule for them and another for everyone else.

Jennyta said...

Yes CW, that thought did cross my mind as I was finishing the post.

YP that was very public spirited of you, but I have also heard of that sort of thing backfiring in some cases, as it was seen as a challenge to deface the site even more.

WendyCarole said...

I hate people who drop litter especially parents who come out of the shop with children and watch while their children unwrap the sweets and then drop the paper. I have never had the nerve to pick it up and give it back to them.

Then there are the people around where I live who come and dump stuff on the communal grass at the back of us. but this is probably classed as flytipping

Jennyta said...

We've had fly tipping here too, WendyCarole, now and again but I must say the council are usually fairly quick to respond.


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