8 June 2012

Proofreader wanted - apply to Barnet Council

you should see the desk

Mr Mustard received a circular letter from the Council. He was pleased that from now on the green bin would be collected on a different day to the black bin as it stops bin wars erupting on the pavement. He was slightly less pleased that the letter was a sloppy piece of work which had not been properly checked.

The front page is not too bad. No email address is given even though that is supposedly the preferred method of contact (or is it no contact at all?) the use of right justify was abandoned in the final paragraph, Jason can't make up his mind if he works in "Street Scene" or "Streetscene" and the use of 02nd and 01st looks rather odd. It is when one turns over that the letter gets amusing.

Seedling marked compostable bags cost about £3 for 20 which seems like an amazingly expensive waste of money when you can throw your food waste straight into the green bin. Mr Mustard's co-Director, also a local resident, who has run a business for 25 years, and dealt with all sorts of complex business problems, was amazed to find she needed to be told how to put a bag into a bin, fill it and then throw it away! The public are not that stupid.

There is an error. "your blue box" has been printed as "you blue box". Mr Mustard is not a blue box! (mustard coloured if anything)

Now it is time that you owned up. How many times have you mistaken your old plastic garden chairs for something that you grew in the garden? Never. The same as Mr Mustard. This most interesting exclusion is not repeated on the website.

Now branching out there is a huge gaff. The leaflet says you can recycle branches up to 20cm in diameter. That is 8 inches in old money. That is more like a tree trunk than a branch. If made of larch a branch that was 20cm in diameter and 60cm long would weigh about 17kg. You would be struggling to lift it up into the bin and the bin would doubtless get rejected on the health and safety grounds of being too heavy, and fair enough too. The website says 8cm (3inches) diameter which seems more reasonable. What has happened? Someone has seen 8cm and thought it was 8inches, decided we have gone metric and multiplied 8inches by 2.5 and got 20cm. That person has not then stopped to think "ooh, that sounds a bit large, am I sure" and probably hasn't shown the leaflet to anyone else. Senior management are too busy grappling with the One Barnet monster to take much notice of day to day routine and so sloppiness becomes endemic.

It has got to stop.

Yours frugally

Mr Mustard

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