So it seems I should not cut grass.
I don’t have much experience with the chore; growing up, though we lived in the country and had plenty of grass to cut and more than enough kids to pitch in, my brothers pretty much took over. I helped occasionally, with a push mower for the trim work around the house and our above-ground swimming pool. However, allergies that caused my eyes to swell shut and more than enough bee-stings to last a lifetime finally convinced my parents that I was too accident prone to pitch in. Besides, as the only girl for most of the time I lived at home, I was needed for other chores. Most of which I avoided, naturally, but that’s beside the point.
When Ryan and I moved away and it became just the two of us, I decided it was time for me to re-learn the joys of grass-cutting. Of course, Ryan and my dad have had enough man-to-man chats during which we tell embarrassing stories about yours truly, that he’s made sure I’ve had few opportunities to hone my skills in the past few years.
The one exception, before today, was the first summer we lived here. We had a long weekend away planned, and I wanted the grass cut before we left. Ryan had somewhere he needed to be, and was unable to get to it, so I decided to step up my game and offer a hand. I mounted our 1960’s-era Cub Cadet lawn mower and set to it. I did pretty well man-handling that beast, and was just finishing the last little bit near the road when all of a sudden… the tractor just flat-out died. Unsure as to what had happened, yet knowing I needed to get the thing back into our yard, I pushed the dead machine back into the driveway and out of the way until I could figure out what the problem was.
Just as I was getting it into the yard and had determined that I had, in fact, run out of gas, the Laws of Gravity and Murphy decided to kick my butt simultaneously. The lawnmower began moving toward the 4-foot-plus ditch that runs between our yard and the main road. So I grabbed the seat of the tractor and dug my heels into the grass. It was, obviously, to no avail, and the stupid tractor buried itself in several feet of mud. Since I was still home alone (I hope you’re picturing that Maculay Culkin movie. It bears striking resemblance to my solo adventures) I needed to find a way to remedy the situation before Ryan got home. Moral of the story, here: when looking for assistance while appearing to be a Damsel in Distress, attach a piece of rope to a lawn mower on one end, and a 1997 Dodge Stratus on the other and drive. I guarantee the neighbors will be knocking on the door in moments flat. I can not, however, guarantee that they will not be accompanied by the people with the hug-yourself coat with all the pretty, shiny buckles.
Fast forward a couple of years. Ryan has had another hellish couple of weeks at work, including staying late most evenings, and one morning when he was called in at 4:30AM. Since he treated me to dinner at my favorite restaurant last night, I thought I would return the favor by cutting the grass for him this afternoon so he could enjoy a relaxing Friday evening in. I even picked up a couple of his favorites at the grocery store, planning on grilling for him this weekend.
There was only one problem with that moment of genius.
I don’t know how to use the “new” lawnmower.
Apparently, while I was trying to figure out how to make the darn thing “MOW,” I messed with the blade height, effectively scalping our lawn.
Oh, and also, even though I was completely sober during the entire experience (come to think of it, maybe this was the problem. Hmm…), the lines from the mower are so crooked and uneven that one might wonder if my eyes were even open while I was working.
So, lesson learned here, friends: I will now be confining my domestic talents to where they belong. Um… hmmm. What domestic talents?