Gay bin collector who became a TikTok sensation dreams of finding a partner

Gay bin-man Ludovic Franceschet has become a queer favourite and TikTok sensation after he posted videos of himself going about his work. 

“I used to be nothing. Thanks to my job as a bin collector and my influencer side gig, I became someone with convictions, values… and smells,” he said.

Every day, he shares videos of his work with more than 300,000 followers, to raise awareness about waste management and the environment.

Ludovic has shared his story with the media and in a book, Plus tard, tu seras éboueur, which roughly translates to: “Later, you will be a garbage collector”.

The book delves into his life: growing up with an absent father and in the foster care system, years of sleeping on the streets, and finding his vocation as a bin collector. It even sheds light on the way his profession is treated.

“I get to the end of the street, and there’s a person on the corner spitting at me. I said: ‘Wow, that’s what [being] a bin collector entails’.

“And they said: ‘You dirty civil servant, you’re paid to collect sh*t’.”

There is one thing, however, that he rarely talks about: his sexuality.

”And then I said: ‘Mum, I’ve got something to tell you. I like boys’,” he recalls.

“I was in the army for [21 months]. Actually, I slept with one of my colleagues over there, and people found out. The commander heard about it. He said to me: ‘Mr Franceschet, pick up your discharge form, we don’t want this kind of breed here’.”

After a few years on the streets, Ludovic became a bin collector. After being verbally abused, he turned the encounter into his first TikTok, which launched his career as an influencer.

“I’m madly in love with Paris. I came here precisely because I knew that the situation as a gay man is… nobody cares. All the time I have, I devote to my planet, picking up litter all the time. I think about my videos, I think about raising awareness, so I don’t really take time to meet guys who might actually suit me.”

And that means he is lonely.

“When I get home, I sit on my sofa and start crying like a baby. This loneliness is slowly eating away at me little by little, you can’t see it, but it hurts.

“When you’re in front of your screen, it’s not the same thing as when you’re sharing sentimental moments, life events, with your partner.”

And his advice for others is: “Just be yourself. No tricks, it’s pointless. Open your heart, listen to each other and go for it.”