THE YARD NEEDS WEEDING
Of all the things a kid can do or say, “I’m bored” is the one thing that chaffs my butt the most.
It is a parent’s duty to feed and clothe their offspring. It is a parent’s duty to keep a roof over his family’s head. It is not a parent’s duty to constantly entertain or provide entertainment for their children.
Children have an imagination; give them a ball of string and a piece of wood and they will find something to play with for hours. A large box to a toddler is a multipurpose toy with endless possibilities. How is a child ever bored?
They are not bored, they just want attention. When you have the time, give them attention, hell, that is fun, but often you don’t have time. That is when, “I’m bored” will throw you over the edge.
I may not handle the “I’m bored” issue very well.
“You’re bored? I’ll show you bored; how about I send you to Pakistan to work in a sneaker factory for twelve hours a day…those kids are never bored!”
This warning never worked. My kids knew I couldn’t afford to send them to Pakistan.
My mom handled the issue much better.
Mom always had a garden. She grew tomatoes and flowers. The garden always needed weeding. We had a lot of grass. We had a lot of dandelions. The lawn always needed weeding.
I don’t remember ever having garden fresh tomatoes for dinner, or fresh cut roses to make the house look and smell pretty. I do remember the garden and the lawn always needed weeding. Mom weeded a lot. I think she found it therapeutic, at least more so then cooking, washing, or cleaning.
I hated weeding the garden and the lawn. We couldn’t use weed killer, I don’t know why. We never mulched or put down that weed stopping paper, I don’t know why, and we didn’t have any fancy weed eater machines or tools I see advertised on TV. Hell, they might even have been fun to use. No, we had a hunk of “V” shaped metal on the end of a rod for which to pry out dandelions and assorted garden weeds.
This tool required you to work from your knees. We had no knee pads, I don’t know why. We had no garden gloves, I don’t know why. I hated weeding, I do know why. I hated those dandelions whose roots grew to China. I especially hated those hairy stemmed weeds that made you itch like hell. I hated weeding.
I learned not to tell my mom “I’m bored.”
Whenever I told my mom I was bored, she always had the same answer.
“The yard needs weeding.”