Lawn Care…Woodworking’s Evil Twin

It started out like any other day.  The sun was shining the birds were singing show tunes, including, but not limited to, a medley from West Side Story. We have very talented birds in Martelle. With the Sharks and Jets rattling around the back of my head, I got right into the usual computer work. The day flew past, like a dove late for choir practice.

As this day was winding down, and my thoughts were turning to woodworking, I got a call. It was from a gentleman whom some would call Howard, others might call him Dr. Meeks, I prefer to go with the nickname I gave him when I was a very young boy, I called him ‘Dad’ back in the late 60’s, and still do today. It suits him.

He had called to ask about the lawn. My front yard had been ravaged in a terrible battle between the sewer fixer people and my yard. It was a long drawn out war, hundreds died. Though the WWI era trench had been filled in, and all the bodies hauled away, ninety percent of the grass had been torn up beyond repair.

A week ago some lawn flattening specialists had pushed the existing dirt around and added some top soil. They had then seeded the entire lawn. We were expecting rain last weekend, but it never arrived. Dad, as I call him, suggested I go out and buy a good hose and sprinkler. He also thought it would be a worthwhile investment to get one of those hose rollie upie devices. I agreed.

I don’t have any experience in lawn care or gardening. I have mowed my parent’s lawn many times, but that isn’t quite the same thing. I have always feared getting into lawn care, as I am told it can be addictive. Tragically my vast yard of dirt is more than I can bear, so off to The Home Depot, which is the reigning Gold Cup garden center in the state of Iowa.

I entered Home Depot and walked past the section with all the shinny Dremel accessories. This was quite an accomplishment in its own right. I spied Brandon, who has helped me before. He was talking with Grant, who manages the award winning garden center. I told them of my needs and they were great. We got me a very manly metal sprinkler with nice brass connectors. [pauses typing to move the aforementioned sprinkler…returns with a diet dew]

I also selected a nice rollie upie device with wheels and a 50′ rubber hose made from recycled Goodyear tires, that quite possibly competed in the Indianapolis 500. Ok, I made that last part up, but that is ok, let’s call it poetic license. The point is that on the Earth Day, my purchase of a hose made from recycled tires will likely save the planet from ultimate destruction, and help me get a nice green carbon sucking lawn.

Thus far, nothing too evil sounding you say? Well I am not done yet am I? I have gotten into the embarrassing habit of reading the instructions on every single new power tool I buy. Not only do I read the instructions, I then admit it freely in my blog. It is almost as bad as using a map, which I would never do. When I arrived home and had noticed that there were instructions, I took a moment and a deep breath, casting them aside with a brashness which had been missing in my life.  The Goodyear hose is designed to avoid kinking, which is nice.  I laid it on the ground and connected it to the rollie device.  Next I unconnected it, as I had not done it correctly.  Not to fear, I didn’t turn to the instructions, I simply tried the one other spot.  It worked, I rolled the hose up, and though a portion of the hose did wrap itself around my legs and tried to throw me to the ground, I succeeded, unscathed.

The hose was then connected to the sprinkler, also without any sort of assistance from the instructions.  The sprinkler was pulled, unrolling the hose from the rollie upie device, and placed at the far edge of the battle zone.  But before I could turn it on, I needed to take a picture, so I grabbed my camera.  After getting the shot I wanted of the sprinkler, I went over to play with Maggie, the neighbor’s dog.  Maggie is very friendly, though not a terribly patient model.

The pet photography now done, I turned my attention back to the grass-less knoll that is my yard.  A quick turn of the faucet and the sprinkler sprang to life, bring a mixture of hydrogen and two parts oxygen, to the thirsty seeds.

I felt great pride at my incredibly unimpressive accomplishment.  I love the thought of a finely groomed lawn.  I fear that this love may, in some way, cut into my woodworking time.  And that is why Lawn Care is the evil twin of woodworking, trying to woo me into betrayal.  I must be strong.  I must go move the hose again.  Darn, that is exactly what Lawn Care wanted me to do.

13 comments
wayne
wayne

here in arkansas, the spring weather is nice, so the urge to plant and water has to be tempered by the 100 degree and 100% humidity that will come when time to mow ..
by the way you and your sister sound just like my son and daughter(also named julie) .. so as a father .. yougo girl!!!!

wayne
wayne

here in arkansas, the spring weather is nice, so the urge to plant and water has to be tempered by the 100 degree and 100% humidity that will come when time to mow ..
by the way you and your sister sound just like my son and daughter(also named julie) .. so as a father .. yougo girl!!!!

OutPutter
OutPutter

Hi Brian. Sorry if I was too harsh. I'm well rested now, thanks. I'm a recovering "Yard of the Month" luster so I can see how you may be tempted. You'll get over it the first time you forget to move the sprinkler and wake from your nap to find the seeds and lawn have washed away. The thing woodworking has over lawn work is permanence. The yard, flowers, bushes, whatever, will die back or out in the winter. The router table will just get better.

Jim

OutPutter
OutPutter

Hi Brian. Sorry if I was too harsh. I'm well rested now, thanks. I'm a recovering "Yard of the Month" luster so I can see how you may be tempted. You'll get over it the first time you forget to move the sprinkler and wake from your nap to find the seeds and lawn have washed away. The thing woodworking has over lawn work is permanence. The yard, flowers, bushes, whatever, will die back or out in the winter. The router table will just get better.

Jim

PurelyJulie
PurelyJulie

Quite impressive, indeed...and NO INSTRUCTIONS? I'm glad you weren't thrown to the ground by the hose. You would've gotten dirty...then needed to shower...and quite possibly the spraying thingy (aka shower head) wouldn't be working...you'd need to go back to The Home Depot...you'd possibly get quite excited about all the different shower spraying thingies (so shiny and big)...that you'd buy 2...but when you'd get home, you'd need to read the directions as you only have one place for the device...but REALLY want TWO! So glad you didn't fall. Good luck on the lawn. You can woodwork between moving the hose--no worries.

PurelyJulie
PurelyJulie

Quite impressive, indeed...and NO INSTRUCTIONS? I'm glad you weren't thrown to the ground by the hose. You would've gotten dirty...then needed to shower...and quite possibly the spraying thingy (aka shower head) wouldn't be working...you'd need to go back to The Home Depot...you'd possibly get quite excited about all the different shower spraying thingies (so shiny and big)...that you'd buy 2...but when you'd get home, you'd need to read the directions as you only have one place for the device...but REALLY want TWO! So glad you didn't fall. Good luck on the lawn. You can woodwork between moving the hose--no worries.

Jackie
Jackie

Hang in there Bri, your yard will soon be the showplace of Kohl Street!!! JD

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