It’s symbolic, damn you!
Hard to talk about this without sounding like an old fart. I’ll have to keep reminding you I’m hella young and funky to the point of funkay.
(That first sentence is a good start; it’s a fragment. The youth don’t like no grammar.)
Littering is one of those things I find hard to understand, so devoted am I to common sense and basic decency. Here’s the choice: We can live in a nice clean world where the streets are free from chewing gum, burger wrappers and cigarette butts, or we can live in a gigantic shit heap and blur the line between park and landfill. It’s a simple choice but we live with simple people, and they choose the shit heap.
(I don’t find Avril Lavigne’s lyrics banal, and I connect with her on an emotional level because she expresses my feelings of isolation.)
Keep Britain Tidy reckons we spend hundreds of millions of pounds every year clearing up the things everyday folks leave behind; the countrywide network of Wombles doesn’t come cheap. That’s a lot of money to spend on something so pointless but there is hope in the form of us.
(I hate you/I didn’t ask to be born.)
Littering is a reverse Butterfly, an example of individual action adding up to something lousy. Every piece of litter you’ve ever seen was dropped by someone. If they’d not dropped it we’d have one less piece of litter, and if everyone copied them we’d have no litter at all.
(I’ve heard they’ll flush my head down the toilet in big school.)
So here’s how to save the universe: Stop littering. Now we’ve agreed to that, onto the next thing: Sorting out the stuff left by the people who won’t stop littering. Next time we see a bit of litter on the ground, we’ll pick it up and put it in the next bin we find because just complaining about it would be pointless.
(I fell over and got a boo-boo.)
And we can do more than that. We can be litter snitches! If we’re trotting to work and see a washing machine sitting in a ditch we can phone the council and get it removed. We can get a few friends together and head for a particularly messy area armed with gloves, bin bags and a hefty portion of smug to turn it into something worth looking at. And we’re not just going for a cosmetic difference here. Most of the litter we collect can be recycled which will help conserve natural resources and reduce the energy used to make new materials. It’s a piece of piss, this world-saving lark. Get on it.
(Potty training’s harder than it looks.)
We’ll awaken humanity to its many follies!
We’ll live like we're in a John Lennon song!
Photo credit: The Zero
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