Junk Modelling: bane of the suburbs

Junk modelling: verb. “To send all your cardboard to school, where my kids glue crap to it & bring the monstrosities home for me to recycle”
— Daddacool (@daddacool) May 8, 2014

Whoever can up with the idea of junk modelling should be first up against the wall come the revolution. It winds me up, and we have absolutely no control over it either. Occasionally we get a request from the school for particular types of “junk”- at the moment it’s bogroll tubes for pirate* stuff- but for the most part I have the sneaking suspicion it’s just the teachers avoiding the rigmarole of recycling. Round our way you see the recycling has become…difficult.

Once a fortnight we have to put all the cardboard into small plastic boxes (that are often actually smaller than the cardboard box we’re trying to flat pack and put into them), all the plastic and metal goes into different boxes, all the glass into the final set. Notice how I’ve been quite careful to say we’re not putting anything into a box (singular). We’ve got 9 of these boxes at the moment. Taking excess cardboard down the dump doesn’t really work for two reasons. Firstly it’s out of the way and secondly Albert Steptoe** stands there and makes you jump through hoops just to recycle stuff.

Sometimes we get wholly inappropriate junk sent home too. Recently Fifi returned clutching what was purported to be some sort of vehicle that was clearly made out of a 12 can box of Carling Black Label. I was shocked; I didn’t even know the Waitrose next to the school stocked Carling; I thought it was all Grolsch, Staropramen and organic craft beers. Seriously though, beer boxes? Really?

I have this image of cunning parents sat at home, using Homeland style tactics to brainwash their kids into a revulsion of cardboard. “Yes, Dominic now physically flinches when he sees the junk at school- he won’t be bringing anything home.”, I can imagine the smug parents saying. I’ve no objection in principle to the kids doing junk modelling at school but the stuff should stay at school, and not only to save me the aggravation of recycling it but to spare me the blind terror as I have to (unsuccessfully) guess what the hell it is they’ve actually made…

*no, it’s not current affairs- the Somalia pirating issue-I checked.
** I caught him standing in the cardboard container once, surrounded by 3 metre piles of cardboard smoking a roll up.