3 May 2006


For overseas visitors' information, a "Wotsit" is a horrid orange coloured cornpuff, allegedly flavoured with cheese. If you have never eaten one you ain't missing a thing! This news item about litter appeared on the BBC News website just today:-
Woman fined for
throwing Wotsit
Littering could cost you a £75 fine in the borough of Luton. A woman has been fined £75 for throwing a crisp out of her car window. Hilary Buckland, of Orchard Way, Luton, threw a Cheesy Wotsit into the road and was spotted by a council official who thought it was a cigarette butt. Mrs Buckland, 46, was issued with the £75 littering fine by Luton Borough Council. She was told that it was the council's policy to issue fines for littering and it made no difference whether she had thrown a crisp or a cigarette butt.
'Hard done by'
Mrs Buckland said one of the children in her car threw the Wotsit into her lap while she was driving in Leagrave High Street, Luton. She then threw the crisp out of the car window. The council's Enforcement Chief Jon Maddox said: "The council has invested significantly in a cleaner Luton and my colleagues work hard to make a visible difference. I don't intend to let a small minority of litter louts take us a step backwards and will take action against anyone I hear of dropping litter."

Mrs Buckland said: "I'm always clearing up litter and always telling my children. I just feel so hard done by."
Well I say, three cheers for Luton Council and a big brown doo-doo for you Mrs Hilary Buckland. They gotcha and if it sends out a message to other litter louts then I say GREAT! I'm not a perfect human being by any stretch of the imagination but I never ever drop litter. It makes my blood boil when I see thoughtless, environmentally unfriendly idiots casting their litter down in the street - no matter how small that piece of litter might be. Hard done by? Bull! Think of all those many other bits of litter you have dropped over the years without getting caught!


  1. We callem Cheetos!

    I hate litter too. people throwing out dirty diapers..nappies I think you guys call them...
    is the worst.
    The Wal Mart parking lot is full of diapers, empty oil bottles.
    Why do people change their oil at the parking lot?
    McDonalds bags

    Which brings me to another subject. Why do people behave so badly in public restrooms? Why do they leave all sorts of nasty things in there?

  2. Anonymous7:06 pm

    They are also called "Cheesies" here.

    My brother is a school caretaker and he is appalled at the laziness of both staff and students when it comes to litter and washrooms. He calls them all slobs.

    We live out in the country and it is horrid how much stuff gets dumped along country roads by both city and country people.

    The world is quickly becoming a dumping ground for trash.

  3. Anonymous7:11 pm

    Forgot to add, re the article: the woman did toss out an entirely biodegradable item. That, in itself, is better than tossing the actual non-biodegradable bag. However, she tossed this edible product onto the road where some poor animal, maybe a bird, will attempt to eat it and probably be smucked by a car.

  4. My cousin is a hardcore greenie who currently runs an eco-tourism/ convention centre thingy in the Central Coast hinterland. He would often take us camping when we were kids. He was fanatical about leaving the area pristine, except for food scraps. Nothing we ever ate would be so environmentally unfriendly as to have chemicals in it, so he would just toss it into the bush.
    I'm assuming Luton is not a particularly pristine environment, so I don't think that tossing one biodegradable potential source of carbohydrate for a pigeon's carbohydrate heavy diet is a particularly heinous offence. I think I'd kick up a fuss in the same circumstances.
    What are they going to do next, fine people in Trafalgar Square every time that they feed the fat little buggers flapping around there? Or the gulls?

  5. In my judgement this woman one is one of those people who automatically claim innocence - it's always the authorities that are wrong - never her. Why can't she just come out and say - fair cop guv! It won't happen again! I have no sympathy whatsoever and I hate to see the littering issue reduced to a petty caricature level.

  6. I wish that the person caught had thrown something seriously non-negotiable like an aluminum can or a plastic bag. Stories like this only seem to give litterers more justification for throwing things because "the laws are so silly."
    In my world, any time someone throws a piece of litter on the ground (or anywhere else), it would immediately bounce up and into his or her pocket.

    Thanks for stopping by my blog! Gibbous is a good word, indeed. I once attempted to write a sestina about gibbons dancing beneath the gibbous moon. It was a decent enough poem, but the unanimous opinion was that there were too many gibbons.

    So it goes.

    You're worth way more than beer and meat pies, by the way! But beer and meat pies are quite good in their own rights.

  7. I AGREE! I often see people throw things from cars I'm following in the dales and I hoot them. Go and chuck it in your own street! Why did you come to visit this glorious countryside if you just want to treat it like that? And that goes for ramblers too who leave a trail of orange peel and kitkat wrappers over hill and dale. IF YOU CAN CARRY THE UNCONSUMED ITEM IN YOUR CAR OR RUCKSACK YOU CAN DAMN WELL CARRY THE EMPTY WRAPPER BACK WITH YOU!!!
    It may be 'bio-degradeable' but how long will we all have to look at it before it bio-degrades, or ROTS as we used to call it, oh yes lets cover our cities and countryside in ROTTING FOOD!!! and what effect will said oh so marvelous biodegradable processed crap have on plants and animals in delicate ecosystems pray? And who the hell are you to make that decision anyway? If wotsits or orange peel or cheese sandwiches were desireable then the local farmer or nature conservation people would have dumped a lorryload already. Take it home with you! ggggrrrrrrrr

  8. Anonymous4:35 pm

    I hate litter too and think we should all take it home with us if we can, but seriously, this item was tiny, mostly air and will have crumbled to nothing in minutes. I don't think she sounds like the kind of person who would throw a can, or cigarette packet out of the window. This was a wotsit ... if she dropped a wotsit every day for a year that would still be insignificant next to the litter dropped by your average tree ... so cut them down before they drop their leaves this autumn.

  9. Mr Pudding! I left an inflammatory comment about you on my last blog post, and you have not yet responded. I must be losing my edge. I even accused you of playing croquet and liking it. Sacre bleu!

  10. What an example to set to her kids. I'm bloody glad she got fined,


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