Sensational Singing Sewermen from Thames Water

The Singing Sewermen from Thames Water would like Brits to give the sewers a rest this Christmas, so the unconventional troupe has restyled the classic carol “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen” into “This Christmas Think of Sewermen.”

The song, part of Thames Water’s “Bin It Don’t Block It” campaign, was recorded deep in the Victorian sewers of East London on a hand-held camera. They’re singing with real feeling, and no wonder: an estimated 500 tonnes of fat (or 1.1 million pounds) – goes down customers’ drains each December, causing nasty blockages and backups…and some unpleasant work for the sewermen, no doubt.

Here’s the lyrics in case you’d like to sing along!

This Christmas think of sewermen who tremble in dismay
When grease from goose and fatted fowl is idly poured away
It clogs the drains of London and it must be scraped away.

Put your fat in the rubbish in a bin, throw it all in
Put your fat in the rubbish in a bin

So when you’ve had your Christmas meal of turkey, wine and pud
Remember our poor sewermen and treat them as you should.
Don’t pour your hot fat down the drain ’cause it will do no good.

Put your fat in the rubbish in a bin, throw it all in
Put your fat in the rubbish in a bin

Slummin’ It at Hyde Park

Is this a photo from a poverty-stricken location in the developing world? No, it’s from the men’s restroom in London’s Hyde Park on the occasion of World Toilet Day, November 19, 2009. (Why just the men’s room, I wonder?)

The charity WaterAid made it “real” for London loo-goers who surely expected flushing toilets, soap, clean water and a reasonably tidy facility. Instead, visitors came face to face with the deplorable conditions that are endured by nearly half the world’s population.

Watch the report on “Loo-ve Been Framed” by Cynthia Chandran for Asianlite on YouTube:

Here’s another take on the event by Lincolnshire Young Journalist Academy’s Jake, from Sleaford’s Carres school newsroom (I think the kid has a bright future in journalism!)

If I Could Place Ads on a Bottle

With demand dropping and prices with it, the bottled water industry needs new business models, and UK-based Soak Media is promoting one tried-and-true idea. Borrowing a page from ad-supported free media, Soak is passing out free ad-laden bottled water to Londoners this summer.

Soak Media friendly staffer

Soak Media friendly staffer

Billing itself as “the refreshing way to talk to Londoners”, the site urges advertisers to…

Get hot and bothered London commuters to engage with your brand by advertising on one of the deliciously cold bottles of mineral water we’ll be handing out across the London commuter network this summer. And don’t forget: this summer’s going to be an absolute scorcher!

Soak Media’s video details their right-time, right-place strategy during “London’s hottest months of July and August.” The company will also do “leaflet tip-ons and bottles moulded to any shape.” And don’t forget, the water is “handed out by our very friendly staff” and enjoys “50 minutes in-hand time.” (And an eternity in a landfill after that?)

Oddly the video ends with the cryptic and vague statement, “all our profits go to charitable causes.” Guess I’ll let that one soak in for a moment.

Busted: Felony Possession of Water

Sex, drugs, rock ‘n roll, weapons, a-OK, proceed ahead. Water? Contraband, you’re busted! We’re no fan of bottled water, but is it really this high up on the sin and shame-scale these days?

Kansas City’s ROCKFEST, supposedly the biggest one-day rock music festival in the country, took over the town last month, and some commenters at KC’s premier rock blog, BacktoRockville, describe just how criminal bottled water has become:
Photo: Jill Toyoshiba/The Star via

Photo: Jill Toyoshiba/The Star via

Rockfest is a bizarre event. Here are some of my observations: I saw a lady forced to pour out a 30 oz bottle of water, but inside, I saw open drug use from pot, to crack, to cocaine. How people can be padded down for water but keep the illegal drugs tells you something immediately. The performers literally encourage the drug use, screaming from the stage how great (the pot) smelled. I personally had no problem getting into Rockfest with a large pocket knife that I literally forgot was in the pocket of my cargo shorts, but had to hand over my opened bottle of water in case it had booze in it… And to the organizers of ROCKFEST….dudes….come on…..while you are focusing on keeping people from carrying too much water in, people are easily taking everything else in there under the sun! (original comment here.)

While another commentor noted,

The much hyped watering stations for refilling bottles? I saw only one.

And here’s proof that it’s not an isolated podunk Midwestern incident, but a cresting global trend! Via,

Photo: CATERS via

(London, June 11) A plane passenger was able to take a six-inch serrated knife past airport security but was stopped before boarding for carrying a bottle of water.

Adrian Elvy, who was flying from Bristol to Barcelona and owns a stock delivery company, said he forgot to take care of the knife, which he uses to open boxes in his warehouse, while packing. The 39-year-old revealed he was stopped by authorities after they saw a bottle of water in his bag and missed the knife, which features a serrated edge and a separate three-inch ’spike’ for loosening sailing knots.