“It was wicked, man! There was this geezer with his arse hanging out of a car window, and he was letting fly this stream of liquid shit at people on the street as they sped past! He got a whole bus queue – one old bloke got it right in the mouth when he tried to shout at them! Brilliant,” enthuses fifteen year old Darren Butter, as he describes the images he has recently received on his mobile phone. “The pictures got sent to all the crapping geezer’s mates, and they sent ’em on to their mates. Half of Britain must have seen them by now!” Hard on the heels of ‘Happy Slapping ‘ – recording assaults upon complete strangers and sending the images to the mobile phones of friends – comes a new mobile phone-based youth phenomena: ‘Happy Crapping’. The object of this bizarre activity is simply to capture acts of public defecation on a mobile phone camera, and send the images to as many contacts as possible. Originally, the craze simply entailed recording the humungous floaters left by the perpetrators in the toilet bowls of unsuspecting friends and relatives. However, it soon escalated to include recording the horrified reactions of the owners of the defiled toilets. “There’s this brilliant one where this woman just screams and goes mental when she sees this huge floater sticking out of her toilet! She runs in and attacks it with a bog brush – there’s shit flying everywhere,” explains Butter. “Even better are the one’s where they trash a public toilet cubicle – spatter shit everywhere; up the walls, all over the seat – and then film the reactions of people going in there! One guy comes out gagging and throws up – well wicked!”

The craze quickly expanded from such zany toilet pranks to recording defecation in less appropriate venues – public parks and buildings, people’s gardens, sheds, ponds and even the living areas of their houses. Indeed, such activity marked Butter’s first participation in ‘Happy Crapping’. “Yeah, I shat in my Granny’s kitchen sink, for a laugh like, while my mate Trev took pictures on his mobile. Her washing up was in the sink and I had the squits – brilliant! There were floaters in amongst the pans and crockery,” chortles the youngster as he describes his initiation into the brotherhood of ‘Happy Crapping’. “My Gran’s a bit short-sighted, so she didn’t notice the shiit at first and started to wash up – she was smearing crap all over frying pans and plates as she tried to clean them! It was bloody hilarious! I laughed so much I pissed myself – all over her living room carpet!”

Whilst ‘Happy Crapping’ and its concomitant humiliation of pensioners and defilement of private property could easily be dismissed as merely a passing, and relatively harmless, fad, its perpetrators would disagree vehemently with such an assessment. “Its art, innit?” opines Alan Duff, Butter’s cousin and a leading ‘Happy Crapper’, famed for having successfully dropped his load on TV ‘personality’ Patrick Kielty’s head from the top-deck of a passing bus. “We’re performing a creative act and making something beautiful with the very products society usually dismisses as repulsive and useless! A lot of thought goes into composing our ‘Happy Craps’. They’re all designed to be as aesthetically pleasing as possible, from the lighting, shot composition and framing, right through to the shape and arrangement of the turds!” Indeed, Duff believes that some of his spatter patterns bear comparison with the work of Jackson Pollock. Other ‘Happy Crappers’ believe that their ‘art’ is also constitutes a radical critique of modern society. “Duffy’s crapping on Kielty, for instance, that was clearly a judgement on the nature of modern celebrity,” claims self-styled ‘Extreme Crapper’ James Acre, who once penetrated security at Buckingham Palace to leave a huge and foul smelling floater in the royal throne. “And let’s not forget that time I wrote ‘Stop the War’ in my own shit on the wall of the Ministry of Defence – you wouldn’t believe the sphincter control that required!”

The ‘Happy Crappers’ have even found some supporters in academia. “If a member of the middle-class intelligentsia seals his own crap in a tin can, or uses his shit instead of paint to produce a picture of the Virgin Mary, they hang it in a gallery and call it ‘art’ – if some working class kid from the inner city craps on your doorstep, it is labelled vandalism and he gets a community service order,” muses Professor Harold Malkin of the London School of Economics. “This is clearly another case of the establishment attempting to repress one of the few means of artistic expression still open to disaffected working class youth. If they don’t succeed in criminalising it, they will instead attempt to make it a legitimate art form and therefore open only to middle class poseurs.”

Others believe that it is artists such as Piero Manzoni and Chris Ofili who incorporate crap into their work, who are to blame for the current wave of ‘Happy Crapping’. “I’ve always said that art is a pernicious influence on youth culture – if it isn’t teaching kids to use their own bodily wastes to ‘express themselves’, it is bombarding them with images of sex, violence and nudity,” fulminates right-wing newspaper columnist John Littledick. “I blame the schools; teachers should be protecting our impressionable young children from being exposed to this filth, instead they take them on visits to art galleries to see it close up! Frankly, I think the government should ban this art bollocks outright! In fact, why don’t they just ban schools altogether? If you ask me, kids can learn more from watching television!”

Others believe that ‘Happy Crapping’ is a highly dangerous, and potentially fatal, activity. “There is no doubt in my mind that this so-called ‘Happy Crapping’ constitutes a serious health risk,” says Dr Mark Satcher, Senior Lecturer in Public Hygiene at the Wathamstow Institute for Higher Education, and an acknowledged expert in public defecation. “I’m sure we’ve all seen the newspaper stories about the man in Dover who collapsed and died from a heart attack whilst attempting to shovel a six-foot high mound of human excrement out of his garden after it had been targeted by ‘Happy Crappers’. There was also the case of the Gwent woman forced out of her house by swarms of flies after youths shat down her chimney, quite apart from the numerous cases of pensioners breaking their limbs and hips when they’ve slipped over on crap left on their paths.” However, Satcher is also worried that the ‘Happy Crappers’ themselves are putting their health at risk. “They are increasingly resorting to the use of artificial stimulants to ensure spectacular anal eruptions,” he says. “In one recent incident, for instance, a girl took an illegal horse laxative in order to shit herself massively in the middle of her office – so powerful were the bowel spasms the laxative induced, she nearly shat her own intestines out! I’m convinced that sooner or later some poor bastard is going to shit themselves to death!”