Tossing around a few thoughts about litter and good British common sense

I see that Geoff from Dunnington isn’t happy but in my experience he rarely ever was.

Until five years ago, one of my jobs on the old newspaper was editing the letters. Frequent correspondent Geoff wasn’t happy then; and he still isn’t happy.

Thanks to David Dunning at Minster FM for pointing this out in a tweet. Otherwise that hardly surprising continuation of unhappiness might have passed me by.

City of York Council’s new anti-litter campaign has a catchy slogan. It asks: “Why are you tossing litter around here?” The placard gives three possible answers: I’m lazy; I don’t think about this community; I think other people should pay to clean up after me.

The plea for tidiness then tidies up with: “Don’t be a tosser, please take your rubbish home with you.”

Geoff says the placards “might cause a titter among the council bright-sparks who dreamt this slogan up, but its puerile nature speaks a lot about the mentality of those supposedly running things at council HQ”.

We need, he adds, “more and bigger waste bins around the city”.

With respect, no we don’t. We need people to stop being tossers. There are far too many tossers in my neighbourhood. They toss rubbish on the road up to the bypass; sometimes they toss old furniture along that pleasant way; occasionally they leave bags of garden rubbish strew across the path on the stray besides the often litter-strewn road.

That tosser slogan made me smile and set my head nodding. The writer earned their fee and good on them. And if it’s puerile, I am happy to be childish and immature too. It isn’t easy coming up with catchy campaigns and a striking slogan helps.

David Dunning said in his tweet: “I think it’s the coolest thing a Council has ever done – agree?”

Well, that’s a big statement but the slogan is certainly a good one. Litter doesn’t often concern me on this ledge, but it bothers me out on the street or in the city centre.

People are such slobs – just ask Bournemouth. The sunshine and the sort of ending of the lockdown brought the masses onto the sands, and they left behind 12 tons of litter. That mound of litter wasn’t caused by lack of bins; it was caused by lack of manners and respect. It was caused by people being lazy-arsed slobs.

And it doesn’t say much for what Boris Johnson likes to call “good British common sense”. Oh yeah? Good British common sense scatters litter everywhere while we are still in a pandemic.

Good British common sense caused people to phone the police when KFC ran out of chicken for a week in 2018. Good British common sense caused the pointless agonies of Brexit and landed us with this shower of a government.

As for litter, if we all had good British common sense, there wouldn’t be any. Don’t blame the bins; blame those lazy-arsed spreaders of rubbish who scatter their shit everywhere and think nothing of it.

Don’t blame the bins; blame the bin-brained.

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