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Inspirational Reads

I'm a Hard-Working, Yard-Working Man

November 9, 2009

So, one thing that I don't like about living in the South is that you have to mow in November. I know this because I've done it for the past six years. One year, when I had a particularly aggressive patch of thistles (ironic) and crab grass, I mowed on the first week of December.

Now, I understand that this is not Florida or Southern Texas or Southern California where you have to mow pretty much year-round (I imagine). This is North By God Carolina, but I'm still not used to it. In northeastern Indiana, it was time to put the mowers away in the middle of September. Sometimes, if Indian Summer falls just right, you might have to mow in October, but after that, you're sitting pretty until April.

Not so here. And while I don't mind mowing--especially if my wife is home to make sure the agents of entropy children don't kill each other--there's just something unright about mowing in November, at least in my mind. Shouldn't there be a law forbidding you from sweating and being cold at the same time? Usually, I come in from mowing and take a shower to feel cool and refreshed, not to warm up and refresh.

And that's the other thing I don't understand: it was a perfectly lovely day yesterday, warm and sunny with nary a cloud mottling the perfect blue dome of the heavens above. Yet, whenever I was in the shade and shadows of the many trees lining my yard, I felt cold. Not shivering cold, but cool nonetheless. And, I was sweating like the proverbial pig, or whore in church, whichever way you want to go with that. When I came in and shucked my pants and boxers, my ass cheeks were ice cold. They were more like ice cheeks. More ice, less ass. We won't even talk about how badly I was turtled.

My only beef with mowing--aside from the fact that it is suspiciously like real work--is that this is a time when I should be communing with my yard and the vast world around me. While I'm locked in the silence within my head, I should be able to ponder the world at large, or--better yet--do a little soul searching. However, this is not the case. Instead of some life-altering and self-improving ompahloskepsis, I think about work. Like, my job work. Like, the job that I'm trying to escape by being home and relaxing on the weekends work.

For instance, yesterday I thought about how I need to register and submit compounds 007 and 009 (yes, the former does have a license to kill...Trypanosomes!). I also thought about how I need to spot the 150 tubes in my hood and then take the cleaned-up compound on to the ring-closure this afternoon, if possible. And from there, I planned out the rest of the week depending on how much material I get out of the ring closure.

Argh! This is not something one should be thinking about for two hours on a Sunday afternoon in early November! Fortunately, while doing the yard on the western side of the house, I was able to put together the scene I'm envisioning for the next chapter in the book I'm currently working on, so when I finally finish up the second chapter tonight, I can get to working on this next one and fill out this scene that I've imagined.

In case you couldn't tell, I didn't really write much last night. Instead, I bitched about the Packers losing on the heels of Notre Dame being whupped on by Navy and how that tore at my poor, despondent heart. And then I put some new things up on the sidebars of the blog! Hooray!

It occurred to me that someone might want to go back and look at all of the Friday Morning Latin lessons. That someone might be me when I'm trying to reference an older lesson, for instance Aut futue, aut pugnemus!, so I thought I'd make it easier on myself and anyone else by just making a link that you can click on and access them at your leisure. Then, I thought the same about Totally Blowing Shit Up Tuesdays. And finally, I thought the same thing about all my TMI stories, so I collected those, put them together, and then added in the five-part story about my stay in the hospital when I got my gall bladder removed back in 2006. For, you know, posterity's sake. And while I probably should have used Lilu's button for the picture linking to all my TMI goodliness, I opted for the Hobbes picture, you know, the class the joint up some. Plus, mooooog used it last week, and I thought it was pretty fucking awesome.

Those are all located over on the far right, beneath the Followers button, because, really, if it wasn't for the 140-plus friends I've accrued over the past couple of years, none of these stories would have made it to electronic print. Think of it was a way of giving back to you.

Now, get off my lawn. I just mowed it and I need to look nice until the end of March.


Nikki said...

I don't have to mow my yard because we got lots of snow and it killed all the pretty green. But you can come and pretend mow it for me if you do it in ur boxer shorts and a santa hat...

Elliott said...

I'm due to mow again this week, but at least it's not an every-week ritual this time of year.

I was opposed to raking when we lived in WI, so I still mowed just to mulch up the leaves, since they weren't so much a bother that way.

otherworldlyone said...

I will never mow a lawn. Ever.

Travis said...

Fuck lawn mowing. I make The Missus do it.

Next year, I'm thinking about getting her a mower with a motor on it.

Yeah I know. I spoil her.

Cora said...

I will never look at turtles quite the same way.

Ed Adams said...

Seriously, dude, this has been a fucked up year.

I just mowed this weekend (northeast Indiana) and hopefully I won't see that mower again until late March or early April.


This is November!

P.S. It did help mulch up the leaves at least.

Lindsey Himmler said...

LOVE the sidebars. They look fab. I need to clean up my blog, but eh....

BeckEye said...

This is why you live in New York, so you don't have a yard.

Then again, you might have to walk 5 blocks and navigate 3 flights of steps just to do laundry. There are lots of trade-offs.

Bev said...

I love what you've done with the place! Very spiffy.

I hate thinking about work, even when I'm AT work, so I try not to do it. Ever. It helps to have a mind-numbing office job in a field you despise.

Moooooog35 said...

Don't you have kids?

Make THEM mow.

Jesus's one of the reasons to have kids in the first place.

That and to clean the gutters. I don't want to do that shit, either.

mylittlebecky said...

i HATE! ice cheeks while sweating! and in general. i also get icey legs. crappy as well. in conclusion, fuck grass! (we have a long standing feud)(because my dad made me mow the grass)(we had literally acres of grass)

Wonderful said...

I totally thought of work last weekend, on a Sunday too. I actually was motivated to get ahead on my work too. I think my brain was confused, but I'm happy to report that I'm back to normal now and am slacking off.

Adam L. said...

Back in my day it snowed in October and the snow stayed until May. That was in Minnesota, back before global warming.

Now, I'm simply ignoring yard work on principle, despite it being 70 and sunny all weekend. It's just not right!!

Frank said...

This whole Indian Summer thing is fucking things up here in Chicago. It was 73 degrees yesterday and there were three guys on my street out mowing their lawns. Even though the grass has grown maybe a quarter inch in the past month, and most of the lawns are covered with leaves anyway.

I assume they feel that grinding all the leaves up is easier than raking them.

adrienzgirl said...

I live in FL. We don't have to mow usually after mid Nov. Then not again till March.

I make my hubby do that shit though. I'm allergic. Works out damn fine!

Mr. Condescending said...

In an indian summer, you have to use a tomahawk to cut the grass I thought?

I hate mowing, that's why I have a peon to do it!

Joshua said...

Damn, that sounds a lot like my day yesterday. Except that instead of thinking about work while working in the yard, I was wondering where the hell this migraine came from all of a sudden. Worse than mowing, though, I had to rake leaves.


Pearl said...

I'm pretty sure that's why I married -- so as not to mow again...

Wait. That sounds dirtier -- and far more interesting! -- than was meant. But whatever you thought I meant, yes. Yes, that's what I meant.


Amber Tidd Murphy said...

It was 74 degrees in Louisville today at lunchtime. Weirdness.

Mowing blows.

Also, it is not my fault your sports teams lost. There was no hex, so do not blame Amber Tidd Murphy. (Go Hoosiers.)

JenJen said...

Ice cheeks and turtles...

Cool as Folk said...

Here in NYC, the lawns mow themselves.

Just kidding. What is a lawn?

My name is PJ. said...

Am I to understand from this post that you don't find zen in lawn-mowing?

Ahhhh, Grasshopper, much work to be done!

Please tell me. the blog dweeb, how to make a link to a group of posts like the ones in your sidebar. Pretty please?

the iNDefatigable mjenks said...

@ Nikki: Should I bring the hat pins so you can gouge your eyes out, too, or do you have those already?

@ Elliot: Yeah, I will admit, mulching the leaves in yard was nicer than raking. But, since my kids love raking, I have to do very little of that.

@ OtherWorldlyOne: And...I will never have sex with a tow truck.

@ Travis: Fuck that. Just get her a bigger pair of scissors. And tell her to curb the attitude.

@ Cora: I'm putting that on a T-shirt, too.

@ Ed Adams: If the mowers are still going, maybe that means my brother still has a job. I half full?

@ Lindsey: Thanks. I got the idea when I stumbled on the "Nice Ass" image I'm using for the Latin lesson thing. That, and digging through all of them last Thursday night, trying to recall all the times I conjugated fuck.

@ Beckeye: Based on my track record with doing laundry in different buildings, I'll opt for the lawn.

@ Bev: Why, thank you, ma'am. And, yeah, thinking about work is no fun at all.

@ mylittlebecky: Oh, yeah, ice legs. I forgot about those. Yes, that sucks.

@ Moooooog35: Well, after they mouthed off and acted like the little seeds of demons that they are, they were relegated to their rooms all day on Sunday, except to eat and piss. So, mowing would have been a reward.

@ Wonderful: Good to hear that you're reupping the slacking. In fact, I'd say that's...wait for it...wonderful!!!

@ Adam L. Yeah, 70s and sunny demanded me being outside. And, since the yard looked like shit, I mowed.

@ Frank: It could be the mulching of the leaves, or it could be that they needed to get outside and escape their wives for a while, too.

@ adrienzgirl: I wasn't sure, so that's why I said I assumed. I didn't know if you all had different types of grass tailored to not growing when the sun's angle got too low or what. But, cool. Thanks for the update. Between you and Elliot, I'll be bursting full of knowledge when it comes to Floridian lawn care.

@ Mr. C: Tomahawks or...elephants. Or smartass kids from the slums.

@ Joshua: Again, I was happy with the number of leaves I took down with the mulching actions of me blades.

@ Pearl: Careful now. I have a very active imagination.

@ Amber: Oh, isn't it? You mentioned it, and thus it was so. And it was a perfect sweep with St. Joe's going down to the Red Menace of Bloomington last night. Uh huh. I'm smelling a pattern forming here.

@ JenJen: Yep.

@ Cool as Folk: Did New York turn into Soviet Russia? Oh, no, wait. There, the lawn mowed you. Sorry. Mixed up my jokes.

@ PJ: No, see, I find it quiet and enjoyable. I don't find it quiet and enjoyable when I think about work while doing it.

Jan @ Struck by Serendipity said...

Quit your whining. It's November and I'm still mowing WEEKLY. Ugh. Once winter comes, I can go 2 or 3 weeks without mowing. I guess it's a nice exchange to never having to scrap ice off of my windshield.

Nej said...

Mot just got done mowing our lawn again....the second week of Nebraska.