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"Use every man after his desert, and who should 'scape whipping?"

Monday, 2 November 2015

Will Lambeth really clamp down on Clapham's mucky yuppies?

Leaving home of a Friday morning, immediately stumble on a crime scene.

There, on the pavement.  The sticky police-tape, the bagged-up evidence is there for all to see. It's stacked outside the homes of the most probable culprits: hang on, it's stacked outside the house I live in!

Yep, check the picture - someone in this area has once again put great stinking, split plastic bags of foul rubbish out on the pavement, presumably expecting the council to magic it all away as part of the usual Friday morning collection.

In the old days, this sort of mess would have been blamed on the lower orders.  But in this part of "Clapham" in 2015, there are not really any lower orders left. There's no escaping the conclusion that the filthiest, dirtiest, least considerate residents are in almost every case, the filthy rich.

This is a street in which professionals think little of paying £1,600 per month to rent a horrible little second floor apartment.  Typically they are a young couple or a group of mates from "uni",  in their mid to late 20s, all with "very good" jobs in the city, or in law, or PR. Or, "sports marketing".

They have not come far from the yuppies of the1980s: they "work hard and they play hard". And noisily, and very messily. They don't have time to cook, because that would interfere with watching the rugby on their 48-in plasma-screens as they guzzle takeaway pizza jalfrezis and neck the tinnies.

They don't have time to sort the recycling, they don't even have time to take in the recycling bags so carefully left for them by the refuse collectors. They don't seem to know that re-cycling is something that happens on this street. They do not seem to realise that those large black plastic boxes on wheels are their dustbins.

I say this with much bitterness because it has been happening so often. Every goddamn week they throw out their rubbish, almost always on the wrong day, in the wrong plastic bags, straight onto the sidewalk. They maybe are animal lovers wishing to give the local foxes and rats a treat. Because the local foxes and rats come out after 2am and tear open the bags and spread the rubbish over the whole pavement, in their painstaking search for meat and blood and fat.

That wonderful mixture of broken glass, takeaway pizzas half-eaten and stuffed back into their boxes, leaking radioactive tikka masalas, half-empty tubs of coleslaw,  beer cans, discarded socks and underpants, murdered houseplants, half-eaten doughnuts. Chicken bones. Everything blobbed with ketchup or sump-oil mayo.

The local dog walkers and early-morning  runners are the first to encounter this vile scene: the dogs will add their pee-stain commentary and spread the mess a bit further.

Remember when Daily Mail readers used to rant about litter-strewn caravan sites and rubbish-filled squats? Well, compared to this lot,  squatters are clean and tidy to a fault. The lazy filth-merchants of this street are the owners of the ghastly brand-new Porsches, Maseratis and those weird squashed-down Range Rovers which elbow and prod each other for parking space. And use this straight wide road like a drag strip.

These porky lads in their loafers and rugby shirts and pushed-up sunglasses skip over the mess they've left as they head for the gym or the trading floor. The don't see it. They do not see anything, it would seem, apart from the big TV screens, their phones, their cars, their girlfriends who look and sound just like them, given a minor re-distribution of hair, and flesh and cashmere. They're in this shitty suburb for a year to 18 months, they pay through the nose for it, and they expect people to clear up after them - just as their mums and their nannies and their maids and their Oxbridge scouts did for them, from cradle onwards.

So, now they are enviro-criminals: will that change their behaviour?

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