I’m fed up to the back teeth with chewing gum


Dalrymple is generally opposed to new laws as solutions to social problems, but this piece in the Telegraph (h/t Teddy Msigwa and David) proves he is no purist. The careless and uncivil disposal of chewing gum is so disgusting, and the chewing itself so ugly, he calls for a national ban. It’s not just the aesthetics of the matter. Getting it stuck on one’s shoe is a serious imposition, and what’s more….


There is even worse (there is always worse). Not long ago I was on a bus and my knee happened to touch the underside of the seat in front of me. I experienced a horrible sensation and knew at once what it was: gum. However difficult the stuff is to remove from the sole of a shoe, it is easy by comparison with removing it from a trouser leg. The first is but Latin, the latter ancient Greek.

2 thoughts on “I’m fed up to the back teeth with chewing gum

  1. Mike

    Hmm. “Learning Ancient Greek is like removing chewing gum from a trouser leg”…I don’t think I’ll use that as a sales pitch when trying to get my Year 8 students to take up Greek!

    Chewing gum is an unpleasant habit but I actually disagree with the good Doctor on this one, it doesn’t appear to me to be serious enough as a public nuisance to merit a blanket ban.

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