Fatbergs for beginners – all you need to know …

Yesterday I found myself volunteering to help unblock an outside drain – oh the glamour.  Having never had to do anything of this nature before I was totally unprepared for what lay ahead.  I won’t go into the gory details (in this paragraph) suffice to say neither will I be at the front of the line next time somebody asks.

If you’re eating stop reading this now.  We’ve all heard about these double decker sized fatbergs in the newspapers but I thought they were mainly found in big city sewers, not round our way but there I am up to my armpits down a kitchen drain outside a regular house, scooping out great whodges of I do not want to know what into into a bucket.  I emerge looking like James Herriot’s stunt double in the infamous calving episode circa 1978 – Marigolds don’t really cut it, but I’ll say no more.

I’m browsing an article how to prevent fatbergs for beginners.  Refrain from chucking the following down your sink, pasta, rice and potato peelings – definite culprit cloggers, as is oil, which of course solidifies, next on the list coffee grounds and eggshells, then it’s seeds and grains with a side order of stringy or fibrous foods such as celery and asparagus.  All the while I’m thinking don’t these people have a bin?

It’s not just sink wars, in a bid to clamp down on the disgusting mounds of fat and filth clogging up the nations sewer arteries water suppliers are crying out for flushable wipes to be banned or at least renamed un-flushable wipes.  As if that isn’t bad enough, fatbergs the size of boulders are washing up on our shores full of the afore mentioned gloop with an added dose of toxic palm oil, these ‘bergs’ are particularly hazardous to dogs and other animals as they are drawn by their diesel-y smell.

All this talk reluctantly makes me think it’s perhaps time to tackle my own personal fatberg, the one which seems to have accumulated about my person over the last year or so, I don’t think a pair of rubber gloves and a push with a poker is going to shift that!  Don’t get me wrong I’ve had a marvellous time putting the weight on – it’s all bought and paid for, but it’s back to celery sticks and long walks reading packets and counting calories for the foreseeable.