Weapons of Mess Distraction

May 28th, 2007   •   23 comments   

As I was walking back home, I spotted this incredible array of strewn flyers, newsletters, bills, envelope covers and goodness knows what else on the floor near the letterbox. Obviously, some of my fellow neighbours are waiting for the contract cleaners to pick up after them.


Just outside my lift landing, I spotted these supposed tools to help clean up the mess which ended up being litter themselves! A very picture of irony wouldn’t you say?



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  1. posted on May 29, 2007 at 2:46 AM

    Sometimes I see those pamphlet distributors standing side by side with the Singpost staff and jointly stuff things into the secure letterbox. Is that legal? Do the staff get some form of kickback for allowing those distributors access to our locked letterboxes?

  2. Lam Chun See
    posted on May 29, 2007 at 2:58 AM

    This (the brooms) is called Collateral damage.

  3. posted on May 29, 2007 at 12:46 AM

    yikessss….dirty! But I always thought such brooms add to the litter – the broom bristles drop off too easily.

  4. posted on May 29, 2007 at 2:16 AM

    My godness, is your neigbour trying way out to ensure the cleaner is working? Pity the cleaner sometime, esp in our homeland when alot of Singaporeans still begin so selfish when using the public assets.

  5. posted on May 29, 2007 at 2:37 AM

    When I read your post, a story forms in my mind:

    The cleaner turns up for his afternoon round of cleaning.

    “What!!!???”, he exclaims to himself. “I’ve just cleaned up the mess this morning and now it’s worse than before! I give up!!!”

    Just like a tennis player who is sore at losing a poorly-played game, he breaks the tools of his trade and throws them down in frustration.

  6. posted on May 29, 2007 at 5:52 AM


    Some of the older brooms do have hair which drops as you sweep the floor. Maybe the owner decided to give up and throw them away in a fit of frustration – poorly placed though.

  7. posted on May 29, 2007 at 5:53 AM


    Nice dramatisation of what may have happened exactly!

  8. posted on May 29, 2007 at 5:55 AM


    By right that should not happen. After all, Singpost is trying to control the access to the postboxes so that they can “monopolise” some of the profits from direct mail. However, as you suggested, there could be clandestine “cloak and dagger” arrangements at play there….

  9. posted on May 29, 2007 at 6:29 AM

    there will be such ppl everywhere. same thing goes for my condo area. knowing that the rubbish bin is full, a common sense fella wld hav walked to the nearest bin to dispose of his rubbish, but NO. the rubbish was put on top of the bin and the rubbish fell to the flr and he cldn’t care less

  10. Endoh Taiki
    posted on May 29, 2007 at 7:17 PM

    I hope Singaporeans wouldn’t need harsh laws to make them do something so simple, with all the education they received.

    Imagine Hong Kong is proposing jail term even for spilling vulgarities.

  11. posted on May 29, 2007 at 9:15 PM

    johnny ong,

    Yeah, I noticed that too at a few places. However, I guess when the rubbish bin is full, there may be little choice unless one is so civic minded as to clear the whole bin himself. Looks like it happens in private estates too!

  12. posted on May 29, 2007 at 9:17 PM


    Wow I didn’t know that in Hong Kong. Singapore has always been a “fine” city but realistically speaking its not possible to enforce it over every single corner of the island. What is needed is moral responsibility and citizens empowering themselves.

  13. Wokking Mum
    posted on May 30, 2007 at 5:58 AM

    Sometimes, I wonder why don’t these people just ‘lock’ their mailbox since they don’t want junk mails.

  14. posted on May 30, 2007 at 12:07 AM

    It’s such a sad sight. I’m guessing that it’s a Asian mentality that “as long as it’s not my property, I don’t bother to take care of it.” I do see Asians (not-necessarily Sporeans) behaving in this way, in the Western countries.

  15. Lam Chun See
    posted on May 31, 2007 at 9:59 AM

    My daughter is in Japan for a 3-week exchange prog. She says Japan is much cleaner than Spore. Not the case when I was there in 1985. She says very few dustbins can be found and she has to keep her trash. I will blog about it when she gets back.

  16. posted on May 31, 2007 at 7:24 AM

    bummer…real sad scene eh..even after all the education received, people still choose to litter. I mean the rubbish bin is just a few steps from the letterbox and they still do this… 🙁

    I wonder if it ever works if we put up CCTVs there..keke…do a bah chor mee on them…

  17. posted on May 31, 2007 at 8:02 AM


    Interesting that you mention it. I wonder if this bad habit could be erased after years of the right exposure though? You don’t see this in Japan or Korea though, so something about those societies must be different.

  18. posted on May 31, 2007 at 8:04 AM

    wokking mum,

    I guess a lot of junk mail comes from Singpost themselves too! Some of the folks employed to slot the junk mail in have perfected it such that they can even pass it through the crevices. These are the paper thin B5 pieces which sell real estate, tuition and other such services.

  19. posted on May 31, 2007 at 8:05 AM


    It looks like that could be the next innovation then? I am sure you know who to reach right? hehehe

  20. posted on May 31, 2007 at 3:20 PM

    chun see,

    Ahhh… its good that your daughter can also personally experience Japanese culture for herself. I think its all about the mentality and way of life there. For once, I doubt that many Japanese households have maids. Also the Kaizen attitude ensures that they do not waste or generate too much trash.

  21. posted on May 31, 2007 at 3:37 PM

    I know…i hate watching people throw their cigarette stubs on the floor and put it out under their feet when an ashtray or a receptable is just within reach!

  22. posted on Jun 01, 2007 at 7:45 AM


    Agree with you man! The only thing is whether we should be telling them off (and risk getting beaten)? Perhaps one way is to take photos in private and report them? 😉

  23. posted on Jun 01, 2007 at 1:51 PM

    ya, youtube, embarrass them on youtube

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