Urban living and conspicuous consumption, has larger than life effects. With those round figures in the bank and thin plastic in the pocket, power abounds like never before. It didn’t require a Newton to say ‘Every action has an equal and opposite reaction’, but guess what, he said it, and God bless his soul.

Yes, our kind of living with those crazy malls the size of airports and airports the size of cities and citie encroaching mountains, oceans and whatever else, reactions are a natural consequence.

Of the several, the ones that are closest to you, those that you cant miss seeing are these : The pot belly is as standard as standard can get, supermarket require trolleys to cart the goods that are bought and while there is some discussion that can be entertained about possibility of life on Mars, there can be no discussion about the lack of possibility of life without a mobile phone !

Such is modern day urban life. No ?

If you think this is a blogpost on the ever changing social milieu of modern day society, well there cant be a farther distance between fact and fiction. Regular readers know that this blogs draws its boundry along the lines of the inane. For instance, this post is about the Trashcan!

Was that a facepalm !?! Oops. Sorry eh !

Are you still reading ? Ok…well, you were warned.

An oversized yet overflowing Trashcan is a constant remnant in any neighbourhoods in Mumbai. And rightly so. With kind of bubble wraps, packs, cardboards, plastic and God knows what else that every day life is filled with ! Days ago, a kind soul thought it fit to gift a microwave oven all the way from the US. It came with an instruction ‘please remove package and instruction sheet before cooking’.

Upon immediate and hurried cross checking, it was made known that it was a general instruction and not specifically written out based on an assessment of a customer’s perceived intelligence. Which greatly soothed distraughtly ruffled feathers. That instruction sheet, along with the package was promptly disposed to the Trashcan.

To cut a long story short ( as is usually said by a loud mouth after sharing a rather long winded story), the world generates enough and more of waste.

The city itself seems to be just short of announcing a grand festival of litter in the neighbourhood, everyday. Citizens decorating streets with empty packets of chips, short eats, trinkets and such else , adding to the colour and variety is a standard way of proud being.

And therefore, enticing people to submit their trash in cans, surely has become an activity of great creative intelligence. Amongst the many ways to this, here are a few that are commonly sighted and carefully presented.

At the first go, there are Trashcans that resemble cartoon characters. Mickey Mouse. Donald Duck. Goofy. And the variety. They perhaps are targeted at children or someone with a funny bone that protrudes. Or fairly pronounced, at the least.

For instance, what could be the chances of the sophisticated svelte socialite running to drop her used tissue in this trashcan just because it is in the shape of a colourful Mickey Mouse imploring her to do so, with a ‘use me’ scrawled all over… Or perhaps, maybe. With people and their modern day preferences, well, who knows.

The other variety are the ‘animal replica’ trashcans. Big gorillas, monkeys, penguins and such else, with various parts of their body sporting a gaping hole, designed to excite the passerby to desist from aiming the just-now-empty Coke bottle at the middle of the road, by providing a very credible and inviting alternative.

Often times, they get stuffed with a vengeance of sorts and the way things are going, it doesn’t look like its going to be long before the SPCA is going to take notice.

Leading the ‘Heaviest Trash Creator’ chart are items of prayer, once the prayers are on the way to the favourite God, puja paraphernalia stays on earthly realms. To expect such a sacred item to be tossed into Mickey Mouse or a Gorilla sporting a gaping hole in his mouth, imploring ‘use me’..well conjures an ineffable picture in the mind. Lets leave it at that.

So, ladies and gentlemen, right here in Powai, we have an ingenious solution that some noble soul has thought of.

Trashcans that take the shape of a kalash. A Kalash ? (For overseas readers, the Kalash is an object of sacred devotion, often used in prayer, and usually adorns the tall gopurams in temples). So there, if you are the puja & pilgrim type, ofcourse, theres a trashcan for you !

(Well, let not the surprise catch you midway through whatever you are doing, the next time you spot a ‘Parliament building’ shaped urinal to excitedly herd all those who prefer to free up their bladders in open spaces. They could think of that, you know).

On another note, here is a postulate. “The surroundings of a trashcan invite as much trash. If not more. They invite more trash if the trashcan seems to be of the protected variety.” That’ Axleys postulate from the dummies guide to rule making on trashcans. Ofcourse, that was made up. But here is evidence.

Trashcans with protection, is something indeed. Ofcourse, as far as trash disposal is concerned, the citizenry of this place knows to encroach. ‘In the trashcans or thereabouts’, is good enough for trash disposal !

There is another genre, people. Trashcans with a name. No kidding. There is one that was present until very recently nearby, with ‘OCTAVIUS’ written on its chest. I mean, come on ! Octavius! The chap was an emperor for godsake. A man that Shakespeare wrote about. A chap that straddled between BC and AD ! Adorning a trashcan!?!

Perhaps to excite the Shakespeare / history types ! Perhaps. Ah ! Times !

6 thoughts on “Trash.

  1. Very interesting post as usual, Kavi!

    Protected trashcan? Protected from what, one wonders. 🙂

  2. RGB says:

    I’ve seen these cartoon character / animal shaped trash cans in malls, theatres, parks, railway stations, airports and such places. Since educated adults are not expected to throw waste anywhere else but the bin, they’re tempting the kids perhaps, who may otherwise trash it right where they are!

    Well, I’m just thinking aloud. Why else would it be shaped that way, when it’s not even ergonomic coz it can’t hold too much waste!

    When people see trash cans, I guess they think they can test their basketball / football skills, which often lands their trash not inside but in the periphery of the bin! Octavius, huh? Some creativity!! Protected trash cans I haven’t had the fortune to see yet. Tks for sharing the pics. Loved your take on the subject, as always!

  3. aativas says:

    We need to be more creative with trashcans…. as we are in the business of creating more and more of trash!

  4. Insignia says:

    More lucrative to entice people to drop trash in them 🙂

    You know I get fascinated by these trash cans when I travel abroad. Clicked few pics as well. Will share them later.

    Few of them are so royal and beautiful that you feel sad to throw trash in them!!

    An interesting topic 🙂

  5. nsiyer says:

    We cant litter like the animals on the roads, so we litter thrash.

  6. Neha says:

    on aksa beach, there is a big kalash where people can dump the material which they are supposed to throw in the river because of certain sacred reasons (sacred trash maybe?)! have you seen it?

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