I’m not a big fan of chewing gum. I don’t just see it as the stuff that can pull your fillings out. It’s another blot on the landscape.
It may make your breath smell fresh and remove particles of food from your teeth but what people do with it afterwards makes me sick.
Look outside every train station, check out every bus stop, and in a great deal of entrances to shops and businesses you’ll see little dots of old chewing gum.
People don’t find it offensive. Most people don’t even notice it’s there but once you see it, you see it everywhere.
You’d think people would put it in the dustbin, or if there’s no dustbin around wrap it in paper until they bump into a dustbin – there a lots around.
But no, let’s spit it onto the floor. Let’s make other people carry it home on their shoes so they can tread it into their carpets.
Or just leave it there on the floor so it’s squashed onto the pavement for an eternity.
If you’ve ever talked to one of those unsung heroes the street cleaner you’ll know what a problem it is. It’s virtually impossible to remove. It’s easier to remove a slab of pavement than the chewing gum stuck to it.
I saw someone spit their chewing gum onto the floor and told them to …pick it up before it got on someone’s shoes’.
They replied ‘what’s it got to do with you’?
‘Everything’ I replied. ‘I live here and I don’t want to be surrounded by your refuse. Now pick it the fuck up before I rub your fucking nose in it’.
Grudgingly the youth did as he was told. ‘I’m going to tell my dad on you.’
‘Great’. I replied. ‘I’ll tell him what you’ve done’.
‘He’ll fucking ‘ave you!”
‘Phone him now. I’ll wait here for him.
Unfortunately the youth turned on his heel and ran away shouting ‘cunt’ at me. But it was worth it. One less glob of gum on the floor. One small victory. And these days, even the slightest victory is worth celebrating.