Saturday 2 March 2024

Binning It by Linda Morse, fizzy water


My first act is to paint my toenails blue. 

I bought the nail polish at the motorway service station. The cheapest, sparkliest, most offensive electric-blue I could find. 


I walk in and close the door of my new flat .

Sit on the floor And apply it. 

It drips on the carpet. 

I swear, crudely. And I rub it in. 


I rub in the fact of electric-blue nail polish and swear because I know he would HATE it. 

That was me… yesterday. 

A whole, noisy day ago. 

I’m not exactly sure who I am today or why I’m living here. I’m one step behind. Still catching up. Still packing. 

Here, Life insists on being heard. 

People noise, road noise, bin noise 

Pantechnicons, police cars and pizza vans. Life refuses to be ignored. 

 Live it or lose it. 



* * * 

I knew who I was, last week. 

 Last week I was safe. 

Surrounded by fields and a garden 

With a compost heap. 

Worms turned my rubbish to sweet-smelling soil. 

Here there are no bugs, birds or beetles to deal with any of it. 

Just bins. 

Bins with brown lids. 

Bins with green lids. 

Bins with grey lids. 

And small mysterious bins that I have yet to understand. 


Bin Men. 

Mum called them ‘Bin Men’. 

Bin Men come on Bin Day. 

Bin Day there was Monday. 

Everything was binned last Monday. 

You went off with the litter of your life 

And left me to dispose of the debris of mine. 

Even the worms would be defeated by that. 


Still… That was last week. 


The Bin Men and the removal van were both last Monday. 


I can’t quite remember how it all happened. 

Perhaps I was simply dropped into the bin. 

I like to think it had an electric-blue lid. 

A recycling bin for discarded partners. 

The Bin Men arrive and I was tossed in with lots of others, mashed up a bit. 

Then we were all squashed together to talk about it. 

* * * 

Now we’ve been disgorged, we paint our toenails blue 

 Get a tattoo A

And get on with it. 


Here I’m surrounded by boxes. 

The same boxes here as yesterday. 

The same boxes as last Monday – there.


 Last Monday there, was Bin Day. 


You said you only needed the weekend to sort out your things. 

You were done by Monday. 


Rubbish sorted from the essentials. 

Shoes: eight pairs – polished and packed, 

Shirts – ironed. Jumpers – folded. 

 Files – filed. And Pants – piled. 

New Pants in packs. 


Nothing much to throw away. 


Just your wife. 


Off you drove 

In your decent, un-showy car. 

Occasionally driven faster than one would expect.

Faster than I expected. 


It all happened faster than I expected. 

But, if I’m really honest 

 Really, really honest 

It was expected.

 I started to expect it Suspect it 

 Reject it (several times) 

Months ago. 

When my friend became very keen to become my ‘best’ friend. 


Robinia – my ‘best’ friend, started to visit us 


Then very often 

Then all the time 


 Even when I wasn’t there. 

Especially when I wasn’t there. 


Robinia’s nickname was ‘Binny’. 


It wasn’t until a week ago that I accepted, for all those months, my husband had been 


 ‘Binning it’. 

He didn’t much like that expression (laughs) ‘Binning it’. 



He disappears in a cloud of aftershave and new pants. 

I assess the damage. 

Weirdly it resembles the aftermath of a wild party. 


I commit my pathetic prettyings to a plastic sack. 

 I thought they made a home 


They make a mess. 


That was sooo last week. 

Sooo who I was. 

* * * 

In my suitcase, ten pairs of jeans, mainly blue. Some smart, some grubby for gardening. 

But I don’t have a garden. 


Bin them. T

wo dresses, one for winter, one for summer. 

What’s the point of more, if you live in the country? 

 I don’t live in the country. 


Buy another dress, buy two. 


Books – mainly read. 

They can go. 


Underwear depleted 

Arguments defeated 

Phone friends deleted. 




’m living here. 

Here, where we’re all piled up in boxes, overlooking the road. 

Our lives separated by a fingers-width of wall. 


You can hear every snore 

Every cough, 

Every moment of ecstasy. 

And you can hear all the basic stuff too The washing machine draining, the toilet flush 

All our rubbish 

Going down the pan. 


* * * 

I’ll bin the gardening clothes. 

Buy a dress or two 

Buy some new pants. 

Definitely get some new friends. 


I’ll visit my neighbours 

I have the perfect opener: 


“Hello. Sorry to bother you. I’m new to the flats. 

Could you tell me 

Which day is Bin Day.” 

Find you copy here 

About the author  

Linda is a Dorset playwright who has had short plays and monologues performed at Southwark Playhouse, Leicester Square Theatre, The Bunker and Drayton Theatre, and in the West Country: Salisbury Playhouse, Arts Centre and Fringe Festival, Exeter and Plymouth Fringe and Bristol Bierkeller. She has written four full-length plays which have reached short or long lists of Bristol Old Vic Open Session and/or Salisbury Playhouse New Writers Award.

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