Monday, July 12, 2010

It’s MY Bloody Bin!

My workstation is a curious thing. When I clock-on on a Monday morning I greet it with a mixture of spleen, bleak acceptance and an odd proprietorial sense of comfort. It’s mine. I might not like the thought of another week at work doing tasks that nature never intended me for but while I’m here by God I’ll make sure my presence is writ large. Me and my desk are as one.

I own it.

Pens. Pencils. PC. Prittstick.

All mine. They may strictly speaking belong to my employer but they’ve been supplied for my use and my use alone and woe betide anyone who borrows my stapler and doesn’t bring it back. Blood has been shed for less.

This sense of ownership extends to my bin.

It’s mine. For my use. For my waste.

And few things irritate me more than arriving at work of a morning, feeling hound-dog miserable that another week will pass without me being employed as a script writer for the BBC, to find that someone – some lazy so-and-so with their own bin – has tossed their detritus into the hallowed plastic bag lined maw of my own personal trash receptacle.

My desk is right near the office door, see. It’s the last workstation people pass on their way to freedom.

So you can see how it happens. Someone scoffs a banana on their way to the door, or takes a last slug on a bottle of tequila, or maybe quaffs down a Müller Crunch Corner that they didn’t quite get round to at lunchtime and, with an arm action worthy of the Harlem Globe Trotters, the offending banana skin / Tequila bottle complete with maggot / yoghurt pot ends up in my bin.

Foodstuffs that I have not had the pleasure of consuming. Foodstuffs that have energized and nourished people other than me.

Their germs and their lipstick – maybe even a few stray nasal hairs – are still around the edges of their cast-off comestibles.

In my bin.

Great. Now the cleaner will think they are mine. Will think that I am the sort of person who discards banana skins in a way that leaves yellow stringy bits decorating the sides of my bin like a cheap Christmas decoration. That I am alcoholic. Worse. That I besmirch the holy temple of my body with a Müller Crunch Corner.

It’s the worst kind of identity theft there is (well, perhaps not as bad as having your credit cards cloned, houses bought in your name, debts run up on your accounts and your family killed by the identity thief and the blame put on you so you have to be investigated by Keeley Hawes – though I can see some positives in that. Note to self: amend that last sentence before the wife reads it).

It’s identity defamation. It’s identity libel.

Or identity... something.

Look. I don’t know what it is OK? It’s just annoying. And I’m fed up with it. And it’s Monday morning. And it’s MY bloody bin!


36 comments:

The Poet Laura-eate said...

Try the stationery catalogue for a lockable one, I would.

Steve said...

Laura: do they make such a thing? I was going to go down the anti-personnel mine route but a lockable bin might be cheaper...

Rol said...

You have my symapthies. Today I feel like crawling into my bin and waiting for the cleaners to throw me out at the end of the day.

MOTHER OF MANY said...

I know exactly how you feel.
We live in a house on an estate which has a Radburn style layout,which is a fancy description for a pedestrianised estate and the roads go to the backs of the houses.
We have a disability access which means our wheelie bins have to live outside the garden gate which means any idiot can and does throw their rubbish into our bins.
Not a problem you might think but it is when they throw ordinary rubbish into our green bin because then THE GREEN POLICE that are our local rubbish collectors,refuse to empty the bin until I rummage through it and remove the offending articles which is not a pretty job!

Steve said...

Rol: just make sure it's your own bin and not somebody else's.

Ally: grief! My problem is small fry in comparison. People really are both lazy and inconsiderate, aren't they? Pity you can't connect your bins up to the mains...

Previously (Very) Lost in France said...

Steve, you need to do what we do here and have 'clean' bins and 'dirty' ones. Everyone's desk has a clean bin - that's only for paper that can be recycled but there is only one communal dirty bin, with DIRTY in big words on the side. Into that go all the nasty things that currently reside in your bin. It's not by anyone's desk and everyone is happy and recycling into the bargain! On the downside though, I job share, ergo desk share. I always leave the desk clean and tidy, everything put away in it's place. I even readjust the height of the shared chair. My job share partner, on the other hand, doesn't. I start each working day with gritted teeth!

The Dotterel said...

I suggest a lid. Plus padlock. It's the only way... Oh, just noticed Laura's already onto that one. Ok then, how about an electric forcefield?

Being Me said...

Oh I sympathise! I well remember this interoffice trespass from my working-in-a-cubicle days. It bugged me then as it bugs me now. On your behalf! Blighters!

Steve said...

Previously (Very) Lost in France: a "dirty" bin? Oo-er! Actually it sounds a great idea but our office is so packed and has so little room to spare people that some poor sap (probably me) would end up with the dirty bin staring them in the face on a permanent basis. My situation wouldn't change at all.

The Dotterel: an electric forcefield? Can I buy one of those on eBay? Sorry. I've been asking that question a lot of late.

Being Me: one day I'm going to snap and empty my bin over someone's desk if they're lucky, over their head if they're not!

lunarossa said...

Thank God for your posts on Monday! This is a gloomy rainy Monday ...What about a note saying Don't touch my bin or i'll bite you! Do you think they will ever notice it? Have a nice week. Ciao. A.

Steve said...

Lunarossa: nope. It will just end up in somebody else's bin.

;-)

the fly in the web said...

Something on the lines of the ferrets the old boys used to keep in their pockets at Epsom racecourse to deter pickpockets?
One that leaps at any unauthorised hand near the bin?

Kelloggsville said...

I used to swap my dirty bin for someone elses clean bin!! but now the problem is resolved : they removed all bins. Yup, none of us has a bin. There are a couple of bin stations. So you have to pile your litter up on your desk and take it to a station when it starts to a) pong b) fall over c) really annoy me. Some people seem to have no little pile : do they eat their rubbish?! I suggest you suggest a money saving scheme and give up your power of 'king of your bin' then the whole stress of the dirty bin will magically 'poof'!

Steve said...

Kellogsville: maybe I could suggest that they use one person's desk each month as a mini landfill site - all worked out by rota - that way we'd all get a taste of it?

The fly in the web: now that's an idea! And given our proximity to a river it could solve our rat problem too!

Suzanne said...

Ok I know that you had a bad start to your day, but that post is very funny, and has put a smile on my face. You have a brilliant way with words. Very succint, very witty. The BBC should be beating down your door.

libby said...

Been there, had that outrage...and the offending articles are usually things I would'nt eat/drink so somehow that bothers me more.....weird are'nt we?

libby said...

Been there..feel that outrage! and the stuff that others put in my bin is stuff I would'nt eat/drink...why does that bother me so??

London City Mum said...

Get a lid for it. You will be amazed how lazy the wannabe-Harlem-globetrotters are when it comes to - horror, shock - having to OPEN something to put their rubbish in it.

Alternatively just take it out, re-wrap it in the best (employer-supplied) paper and put it back on their respective desks.

With a note: "I think this is yours."

Oh and that smelly sushi box? That was mine. Sorry!

LCM x

Gappy said...

I don't like it when I've bought a newspaper or magazine and then someone reads it before me. I think perhaps that's coming from the same place as your bin angst... whadya reckon?

Mark said...

What a load of old rubbish.

Mark said...

Massive problem with commenting recently - my system seems to reject them (error messages) and then 3 appear on the blog I've been commenting on.

So anyway - your last post was load of old rubbish (ha ha ) and if you've received that comment before it is because it's because I sent it a few minutes ago but I got an error message.

Aghhh. I'm trying Firefox to see if that sorts it.

English Rider said...

Write a "Bin Etiquette" declaration and make everyone sign a pledge.

Vicky said...

At least you don't need to play hunt the bin every second day LOL I think the cleaners just do it to do my head in LOL

Owen said...

You have to stop getting trashed like this at work...

Steve said...

Suzanne: the BBC do beat down the door every day... usually to tell me to get out of their offices.

Libby: nope, perfectly sane. ;-)

LCM: I wondered where that came from! Sadly we have lidless bins at the local authority where I work. To make it easier / quicker for the cleaners to empty them... hence a cost efficiency.

Gappy: totally. Reading theft is the most heinous of crimes and I intend to write to my MP about it... as soon as whoever borrowed my pen returns it.

Mark: I think it might be Blogger who as has genuinely been rubbish today (yesterday) - been having the same problems.

English Rider: I suspect it would end up in the bin.

Vicky: they're just bored. I reckon they play bin skittles when everybody's gone home.

Owen: trashed I can cope with. It's the being endlessly recycled which drives me insane.

Heather said...

A trap is what you need, something that dumps a bucket full of water on their head or explodes yoghurt all over them.

The Sagittarian said...

Bin there, done that.

Being Me said...

I've got it. Electric shock. Surely it's simple, nothing you couldn't whip up with a paperclip, a bobby pin, some Blu-Tac and a rubber band to make something that causes friction. If McGyver can do it.... But then, what would a man be doing with a bobbypin.... Hmmmm, this will take some more thought.

Steve said...

Heather: exploding yoghurt? Interesting concept. Might make more work for the cleaners though.

Amanda: you ol' has bin!

Being Me: hey, I could be metrosexual for all you know! ;-)

Nota Bene said...

Hide the bin.

Or put cling film over it for hilarious results

femminismo said...

Oh, Steve. You are so funny! errr.... oops! But of course you are right ... er ... this *is* YOUR bin. Having the opinion of the cleaning staff can be worthwhile and we wouldn't want them thinking you're any of those things you mentioned. Still, this is laugh out loud funny because it's TRUE for all of us! Thanks for stopping by so often. You are a saviour!!!

Previously (Very) Lost in France said...

Steve, in my past life I had the (mis)fortune to work for the Commissioner of Independent Drama at the BBC. Every day, my office would be cluttered up with out of work actors employed to read the hundreds of scripts that came in each week. 'Out of Work' is the key here. They had their heads so far up their a**ses that they didn't know what time of day it was. Somebody's life's work would be discarded by one of these wannabee luvvies because he couldn't see a starring role in it for him. Made me mad... mad... MAD! Take their rejection as a compliment!

vegemitevix said...

Of course you could booby trap your bin. A little gladwrap will provide an hilarious surprise to the banana thrower! Oh and by the way any room on your park bench outside the BBC commissioning office. Another week passes and I'm not employed by them either! x

Steve said...

Nota Bene: cling film? Ooh now that I like. There's a great gag involving that and a toilet seat that I recall from my school days...!

Femminismo: why thank you. I wonder if I shouldn;t award myself the golden bin award for services to blogging...?

Previously (Very) Lost in France: thank you for the insight. Maybe I ought to mark my work "for the sole attention of Philip Glenister or Matt Smith"? ;-)

Vegemitevix: they don't know what they're missing. Are you listening Steven Moffatt? We're here waiting!

Wanderlust said...

Banana peels. Now that is just beyond the pale. A firing offense, I would think.

Steve said...

Wanderlust: a firing squad offense in my book!