Wednesday, May 7, 2014

A mowing article

Writing as a mow

    I’m reasonably sure that this is the first time in the history of Western Civilization, that anyone has written an article while mowing the lawn. If there’s not an award for something like this, there oughtta be.

    I know what you’re thinking. -- How does a guy write anything while he’s mowing? – That’s easy. I’m writing it all down in my brain. I’ve got a brain like a steel trap. Or aluminum bat. One of those.

As soon as I put this 22-inch, almost self-propelled mower away, I’ll go to the study and transfer my thoughts word for word, to a computer screen. Well, I may forget the aluminum bat part. That was stupid.

Excuse me a second. It’s decision time. -- Do I mow completely around the elm or wait and finish it off during the next pass? -- I hate mowing decisions. – Okay, we’re going completely around this buddy.

Beg pardon? Oh, yes, I called it an “almost self- propelled” mower, ‘cause only one of the wheels has any pull to it. The mower will pull itself across a tiled floor, but not across grass.

I’d try to fix it, but I know my limitations. I learned most of my limitations from experience. Three years ago, after spending half a day wrestling with the wheel turning gizmo, I took it to a shop for repair. It cost me $140.

If I have it repaired a second time, it’ll cost more because of inflation and the war in Ukraine. If you add the cost of the first repair to the second one, it will end up being the cost of a new mower. So, do I buy a new mower, or keep pouring money into this one? It’s a conundrum. If a conundrum were a good thing, it’d have a better name.   

The mower conundrum is like the one associated with the icemaker dispenser on our fridge. To get it fixed, I’d hafta buy a new refrigerator door and that’d cost me more than the refrigerator. They put flaws in things so that you hafta buy new ones. They do it because of the unrest in the Middle East. They’ve got a reason for everything. “They.” Whatta buncha crooks.

 Just a second. I’ve got to pry off this stupid mask. It’s supposed to catch dust and pollen while letting me breathe. Unfortunately, it can only do one of those things. It can filter the daylights out of the air, but it won’t let you breathe while it’s doing it. “They” are at it again.

    I used to buy a box of 50 surgical-type masks. But they don’t work all that well. I can almost breathe wearing one, but that’s only because air seeps through the sides. So, I bought this thing that construction guys use when they’re messing with asbestos. It’s massive, and makes me sound like Darth Vader. – Pshuuuuuuush. Wishuuuush – I don’t know how Darth Vader put up with that mask.

Beg pardon? Oh, yes, I’m mowing over some beautiful wildflowers. I particularly like the bluish-purple ones. Bogenfloridides. I make up scientific names for flowers while I’m mowing. I get so creative when I mow.

I asked Kay if I should mow around the wildflowers this year and she said not to worry about ‘em. She said it makes the yard look all patchy. She didn’t really say the word “patchy” ‘cause she’s got more refined language skills. It’s one of the reasons I married her.

I’m not supposed to mow over the bluebonnets over yonder. Those are her babies. As soon as the blooms die off, I have to keep mowing around the plants until the seedpods open up. That part of the yard will look monstrously weedy for a good while. People will point at it and say, “Wow, Mark is a lousy mower. Let’s get the neighborhood association to beat him up.” They do stuff like that, you know?

Speaking of Kay, she’s the reason I’m brain-writing as I mow. Before going to work this morning she hinted that that I should mow, and I told her I couldn’t ‘cause I needed to write an article. She said, “Why don’t you mow and then write.”

That’s when it hit me. Boing! I said, “No! I’ll write as I mow! I don’t think it’s ever been done!” Kay gave me her usual one word response. -- “Whatever.”

Don’t you just hate “whatever?” I hate it. I shared a brilliant idea with her, and she said, “Whatever.”  Whatever is a balloon popper. An ego deflator. An adverbial slap in the face. All of ‘em similes. I’ll figure out how to spell “simile” at the computer..

Oh, no! I’m in the bluebonnets! -- Wait a minute. That was a rhodopipsdon. Had me worried there for a minute. – What? Uh, right, you need to leave. It’s been too much fun, huh?

Beg pardon? I thought sure I heard one of you say “Whatever.” No, no, I don’t blame you. A mowing article was a bad idea I’m blaming this one on Kay. Of course, I’ll keep that part out of the article.


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