RICHARD ORD: How to get around the litter of the law

I've had less grief for missing a wedding anniversary than I have for missing bin collection day.

Wednesday, 11th January 2017, 12:15 pm
A giant metal soldier towering just under six metres, made from scrap metal by blacksmith Martin Galbavy, for a private client to commemorate the First World War. Picture PA Wire

Just as some parents have their children’s names tattooed on their bodies for fear of forgetting them, I am close to having the bin collection times inked on my body.

But even that is not foolproof. It’s no use having them tattooed on my back or arms, as they’re usually covered.

The answer, I reckon, is to have the bin collection times tattooed on my children. Across their forehead.

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As soon as they return home from school, instant reminder to put the bins out. Perfect. I could also have their names tattooed on their heads too.

Bin collection day is occupying my every waking thought. The reason being, we missed the recycling bin collection. The black bin is now groaning under the weight. ‘If you missed the bin collection,’ I hear you ask, ‘how come you’re still walking unaided?’ True, to miss putting out the bins would usually see some sort of physical punishment meted out, but I am innocent.

I did put both the normal waste bin and recycling bin out on time. My wife, however, on hearing the binmen pass, ordered our youngest, Isaac, 12, to put the bins back in the yard. Schoolboy error. The waste bin had been collected, but the recycling bin had not. Our Isaac didn’t question, he just obeyed his mother and put the full recycling bin back.

No punishment for mum for her error, of course, but all eyes are on me to ensure the bin makes it out this time.

Failure to do so, will result in some creative thinking to dispose of the rubbish.

South Tyneside Council caused a hoo-ha when it said you can put green waste in ordinary bins. And this after urging people to pay £25 to have it collected.

One councillor suggested residents could avoid the charge by putting their green waste into small bags and dropping it into their ordinary bins at regular intervals.

How soon before residents start taking a leaf out of The Great Escape to dispose of their garden waste? Instead of paying £25, simply don a pair of oversized trousers with the bottom of the legs drawn tight with string. Fill the trousers with chopped up garden waste and go for a walk. When you are far from home, ideally in woodland, simply undo the string and let the waste fall out.

Alternatively, fashion the garden waste into a series of large hats, then go out for a walk on a windy day. Wind catches hat, blows it into a tree, and you save £25

Surely I’m not the only one to have thought of this? Only last week we ran a story of the fantastic giant artwork of a First World War soldier which was revealed in Dorset. It is made of scrap metal and stands over 20ft tall.

Most people saw it and thought it was a brilliant monument. I thought, “good work, bet that saved on having to hire a skip.”

If I fail to get our recycling bin collected this week, I may be presenting our local community with a large monument to the fallen of World War One too. It would be an infantryman, rifle cocked, staring across no-man’s land.

It would be hastily constructed out of plastic milk cartons, beer bottles and cardboard toilet roll tubes.