By Josh Mitchell/Corinth Today
This time of year people are not yet into the full grass-mowing mood.
Some people have gotten their lawnmowers out a time or two since putting them away in October. But there are a good many who are dreading going out to the shed to dust off the old mower and get it ready for another summer of grazing grass.
There are a lot of flowers blooming this time of year, which kind of gives people an excuse to put off mowing. They can say, “Those aren’t weeds, they’re pretty flowers.”
One time I saw a picture in a newspaper of a house with all kinds of vines, grasses, flowers and other vegetation covering the front yard. The caption asked, “Is this pretty or an eyesore?”
It reminds me of those Hank Williams Jr. lyrics that say, “I’ve got wild honey trees and crazy little weeds growin’ around my shack. These dusty roads ain’t streets of gold, but I’m happy right where I’m at.”
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but when it comes down to it, there is something satisfying about seeing a freshly cut lawn. I don’t know why.
I went to Mississippi State, which has a renowned turf management program. I have always wanted to see the grass courts at Wimbledon, which start off looking pristine and then are worn down by the end of the fortnight.
Perhaps the worst grass cutting catastrophe I have had is when I bought a weed eater and broke it when I was taking it out of the box at home. I was literally unwrapping my new purchase when I snapped the trigger that makes it work. I went right back to the store and bought another one.
One time I was out mowing and heard two loud pops and looked up and saw a car engulfed in flames. No, I did not cause the fire. I ran down the street to see if anyone was in the car, and luckily it was empty. My wife called 911, and I took pictures of the firefighters putting out the blaze. That was the only news story I ever got while mowing, but you never know what you will see when you are cutting grass.
I was mowing my lawn last year and looked up to see my car window shattering before my eyes. The mower spit out a rock and crushed my window. The guy at the window repair shop said that was a very common cause of window breaks so I did not feel as bad after that.
Yes, mowing certainly has its fair share of suburban adventures, so when you start cutting grass again keep in mind that it can be an exciting chore.
Now that I am getting older I wear ear plugs when I mow and weed eat. Sometimes I see people who wear earphones and listen to music when they mow.
Well, once some people get their mowers cranked up from hibernation and see that black poof of smoke and hear the turning of the blade they will get that mowing spirit back. They will once again relish in the satisfaction as they look behind them and see the smooth cut lawn next to the tall grass.
I have spent a lot of time behind a mower and a weed eater in my day. In fact, my dad said I did so much weed eating that he was going to get me a trophy. I also had a part-time job in which I cut lawns. That was a pretty good job because at the end of the day you really felt like you had put in physical labor. The crew I worked with often got fried catfish for lunch too. Other cool jobs I have had include working at a roadside fruit stand and growing sweet corn.
When I was in college, I wrote a paper about my experience working at the fruit stand and titled it “Confessions of a Fruit Stand Manager.” Maybe I could write a book about my grass-cutting experiences, but I just have to remember that Stephen King already wrote “The Lawnmower Man.”