Just how far does one have to travel up one’s own arse before you forget that there is a world out there?
It’s a question that has perplexed scholars and philosophers for thousands of years. Yet, should it be of any real concern to any of us who choose to live in the anal address?
This writer has long advocated a more widespread appreciation of waste material, just as long as that waste material is natural and organic. Who cannot fail to appreciate the aroma of freshly produced horseshit? I know one ex-president in the world who swears by it. Anyway bull-shitting apart, there is something rather rural and fine about the qualities of a decent pile of homemade fertiliser. When I was a kid, the prospect of a shovel of the stuff caressed around the base of a rose bush, made said waste move faster that itself off a shovel.
But the same cannot be said for dog or human waste. We eat too much meat for that. Our bi-products are not so healthy. Indeed, they are something to be avoided at all costs. Things were an awful lot worse in the days gone by. Where I live, there is much less evidence of doggy-doo-doo around the well-kept streets. People have become accustomed to taking their pooch out and emptying it, not directly onto the pavements or neighbouring grassy verges, but scooping it up with the eponymous instrument and then placing it into a bag to be carried home for proper burial. One of my neighbours takes so much joy in this act of civil politeness that he can often be seen swinging two full bags of the stuff that has emerged from the two lap-dogs that he exercises on an extremely regular basis. Two swinging in tandem, now there’s a man!
Other dog walkers are not so civically responsible. Okay, so they take out a bag. Unfortunately, they are not swingers. They feel ashamed at carrying the bi-product of top of the range pet food about with them, so they place the said bags lovingly at the side of any paths or waste ground they are walking along. Their intentions appear to be good; or that is what they hope for us to believe. Instead of navigating their way back to the point of the poo, the conveniently take another route home, thus forgetting to collect the uncollectable.
Then there are others who wish to create faecal works of art by decorating railings, fences, bushes and trees with their super scoops. Imagine how such a sight could have inspired a writer such a Robert Frost.
‘Often you must have seen them
Loaded with poo a sunny winter morning
After a walk. They splosh upon themselves
As the breeze rises, and turn in circles
As the stir cracks their intention.
Soon their creators will be home and warm
And forgetful, like some dark sleep, of the
Presents they have left hanging there.’
I, too, have been a swinger of poo-bags
And so I dream of going back to be.