html xmlns="" xml:lang="en" lang="en"> From the archives: And fix the sprinkler the drunk driver broke when he drove down my sidewalk.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

And fix the sprinkler the drunk driver broke when he drove down my sidewalk.

When I was a kid, it was my job to mow the lawn. And by ‘mow the lawn’, I mean mow the acre of lawn with a heavy push mower once a week for years. When I asked Daddy why I had to mow the lawn when my sister only had to clean the pool, he would tell me it was because they loved her more. If I complained that our friends didn’t have to do chores all the time, he would say that we were born to a long line of Russian peasants and ceaseless labor is both our heritage and our destiny.

So it’s not that I don’t know how to mow the lawn, or that I am intimidated by the three hundred square feet of lawn in front of my house. It just galls me to put effort into a lawn I don’t want. People suggest getting a better lawn mower, but then I have to put money into a lawn mower I don’t want for a lawn I don’t want. So I watch the weeds get taller and taller, enjoy the spiders and ladybugs I find in there, and wait for notification from the city.

Last year I had one date with an internet boy, who by coincidence played in the Ultimate league I managed. When I asked what else he did around town he said that he was part of a dream interpretation group. I didn’t want to get heavily into his dream interpretation practices, so I told him that the night before league opened I had an anxiety dream about it. I dreamed we arrived at the fields and they were filled with five foot weeds like the ones in my lawn. The kind Ultimate players in my dream just looked at the fields, then started pulling weeds. In the dream, this tall fast girl who always burns me deep was also better at pulling weeds than I was. It seemed like a pretty straightforward anxiety dream, so I was very surprised when he told me that was fascinating. I said it seemed simple, but he said that when you dream you receive messages from the collective subconscious. “Really? The collective subconscious wants me to mow my lawn? Doesn’t it have better things to think about?”

I laughed, but the following Wednesday there was a short rain to cancel league, and I happened to be standing in front of my house just as a neighbor finished mowing his lawn and offered me the mower. The simultaneous occurrence of a free evening and a lawn mower couldn’t possibly be coincidence; I had to admit that the subconscious collective cared about my lawn.

The subconscious collective was blunter this time. Barbara called me yesterday to tell me that code enforcement was taking pictures of my yard. The ladybugs have been gone for a week, so I am ready to mow. I figure I made it to June without mowing, which is as much as I want to defy the subconscious collective anyway.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why don't you just turn your lawn into a rock garden, or fill it with wood chips, or something else that requires no effort to maintain?

1:10 PM  
Blogger Megan said...

I actually love to garden and want to rip out the lawn to plant a drought tolerant garden. I hope to get to it this summer. I hope to never mow a lawn again.

1:22 PM  
Anonymous hamilton said...

The collective subconscious doesn't seem very threatening. It's that collective conscious down at the code enforcement that gets me to mow my lawn.:)

2:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So, what you really need to do is hurry up and have kids so you can put them to work doing the chores you don't want to do. That's why people have children, right?

3:20 PM  
Blogger Megan said...

That's why my parents had kids for sure. My sister and I had to clean the kitchen after dinner once we were eight and six; if a kid was home, there was no way a parent would do dishes. I learned to cook so I could spend time with my Dad, who made dinner every night. But he turned that over to me when I was fourteen. He wasn't kidding about ceaseless toil.

3:38 PM  
Anonymous Jenn said...

You could plant prairie grass. The government will pay you to NOT mow your lawn then! (At least, you can do that out here in IL...)

7:16 PM  

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