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Thursday, August 25, 2016
MOWING THE LAWN
MOWING THE LAWN
A recent post by Scott @ http://lowandslow01.blogspot.com/2016/08/back-in-my-day-we-walked-2-miles-to.html jogged this memory.
When I was age ten mowing the lawn became my chore. My brother Chris, had the chore before me but at the age of 14 he decided he had homework and sports so he didn’t have time…I did, and it became my chore. Of course when I was 14 and had homework and sports there was no one for me to pawn this chore on, so I mowed the lawn all through school and later when I owned my own home.
I mowed lawns for 50 years. It wasn’t so bad, as a teen, we had a power mower, an old reel job that you had to choke before starting and that used a rope to pull start. Fortunately, it usually started on the third pull.
Anyway, you may ask, “If you had three sons, why didn’t they mow the lawn when they turned ten?”
Good question. It has a two-part answer.
First I was a pushover and did not demand enough of my boys…after all, they had homework and sports (I never learn.)
Second, my sons were masters at not doing the job properly and I was not tough enough to demand they do it until they do it right. My oldest, Mike, could do a full spin off a jump on snow skis. He could do tricks on his bike, including riding around the block on one wheel; and yet he could not start the lawnmower by himself, he did not know how to add gas, and he could not mow the lawn without leaving missed spots all over the yard.
It was easier to just to it myself, which of course was his plan all along. Next in line, Matt, got a pass. If Mike couldn’t do it properly, why would Matt be any better.
When Spencer was eight, twenty years later, I had more patience and was teaching him how to do this chore. He was learning without complaint, but when he turned ten I was asked to leave and move into an apartment. The person who requested I leave hired someone to do the chore I had been doing for 50 years, so Spencer escaped the chore the same as his older brothers.
He might have been the last of a dying breed, kids doing yard work. As Scott pointed out, you seldom see anyone mowing their own lawn anymore. Lawn services are the new norm. I do still see some home owners cutting the grass, but never kids or teenagers.
I guess everyone has a lot of homework and sports.