Guest Post: 7 Reasons That Recycling Is Rubbish
It’s fair to say that the 7 Reasons Sofa Tour of The United States (Manchester, Scotland and rainy streets) is well and truly over now. While we have enjoyed our foray over the Atlantic (Pennines, border and road) in the past month or so, there is nothing quite like being at home. Taking over sofa duties today is Richard O’Hagan, who, apart from being a fanatical environmentalist (if this post is to be believed) writes about stuff for The Memory Blog, the Daily Mail and Cricket With Balls. You can follow him on Twitter and get directions to his house here. Over to you Richard.
Don’t get me wrong here, recycling is a good thing. At least for the next couple of generations. After which time we’ll have recycled everything so many times that no-one will really care any more, because everyone will have forgotten how to make anything new anyway. No, what I really object to is my local council saying that I have to recycle stuff, then only collecting half of the stuff they tell you to recycle.
1. Rubbish In Car. The council have dustcarts to take the rubbish away. Recycling is still rubbish. Why the hell am I having to put it in my car and drive it to the recycling point. It’s bad enough that you are using me to do the job you should be doing, do you have to take my vehicle as well?
2. Colour Blindness. They insist that I divide my glass into clear, green and brown. Apparently you can never cross the streams and mix green with brown. But I am colour blind. I can no more tell green from brown than I can give birth. Which means that 2/3 of my trip is entirely pointless. No, more than that, because where’s the bin for this blue vodka bottle? Or this yellow lemon juice one?
3. Wasps. What do wasps like most? Sticky, sweet stuff? Like, maybe, the fermenting dregs of booze in a bottle bank? Yes, at this time of year, going to the bottle bank – if you can work out which bin to put which bottle in – is like visiting a giant wasps nest. So now I have a smelly car, am worried that I might be putting stuff in the wrong bins, and am now risking death by wasp sting.
4. Foil. The council also insist that I recycle foil. But only clean foil. Which is completely useless, because I need the clean foil I have to put over stuff that I am cooking with. The whole point of foil, in fact, is that it gets dirty. And have you every tried to wash the stuff? It is like trying to wash custard skin. So now I have to choose the lesser of two evils and recycle less-than-clean-foil. Which leads to
5. Dirty Hands. Dustmen get given gloves. If the council want me to do their job, surely they should give me gloves. So not only do I get confused and stung by doing the recycling, I also have dirty hands. Although my car is also dirty.
6. Boxes. And then there is the cardboard box problem. To get the cardboard boxes to the recycling, you need to put them in something. Such as a bigger cardboard box. Which you then put into a bigger cardboard box. And then a bigger cardboard box. Until you end up with a box so big, it won’t go through the stupidly small, letterbox-like, slot they have put in the cardboard container. So you leave it on the ground, along with the boxes left by everyone else who had the same problem, because
7. Mountains. The council don’t believe in emptying the recycling until there is a mountain of cardboard that even Sir Chris Bonington would baulk at. Which means I’ve got dirty, my car has got dirty, and I have been stung and confused, simply to create a small version of the very big rubbish tip I still suspect the council of carting the whole lot off to anyway. Pah. Recycling is rubbish.