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What Are These Hot Pink Globes Popping Up Around London?

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slate articleThe following is an excerpt from Mark Vanhoenacker | October 27, 2015 | Slate.com |

What’s That Thing is Slate’s column that examines the details of the world that are hiding in plain sight. Send ideas for future columns, along with photos if possible, to whatisthat@markvr.com.

The last few months I’ve been seeing odd little pink globes popping up on signposts and lampposts around London. I finally walked up to one to investigate.

These bins are called Gumdrops. Designed to resemble strawberry-flavored bubble gum bubbles, Gumdrops are recycling bins for used chewing gum. That’s nasty, I thought, but Britons seem cool with them: The first Gumdrop I saw (at an airport) was bursting with a moist, mostly gray, brain-sized amalgamation of well-chewed chewing gum.

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