Wednesday, December 13, 2017

I'm Such An Idiot (Day 347)

Now that mowing season is over, my Saturday's are a bit more "open" for accomplishing other tasks in the yard. A few weeks ago all the tomato plants finally got uprooted (leaving us with the 175,000 green and ripening tomatoes that refused to grow in the warmer months--strange plant). The trellis used to grow cucumbers got rolled up and stored. The compost got spread. All that remained was the leaves.

The Leaves.

This is not meant to criticize anyone, but why burn leaves? Why fill the air with smoke (especially when it blows toward my house, thank you very much) and create a fire hazard (we've not had rain for months until recently)? Why not compost your leaves? Over time you can feed your flower and vegetable gardens with them . . .

So I got this neat little gadget. It's a leaf blower that, when you open the trap door, put the tube on the OTHER end and add a collecting bag, makes a nifty yard vacuum that (wait for it . . . ) chops your leaves into compost material! #GivemeyourleavesIwannachop'em!

Gathering my arsenal, I made my way to the back yard: rake (check); leaf blower/yard vac (check); extension card (check). The plan: yard-vac the leaves and dump the choppings into the garden for next year's crop. 

Now I have a big yard and leaves are most prolific down in the back, near the fence. So making my way along, I raked the leaves away from the fence--rake, rake, rake, rake and rake. When I was done, I raked some more until I formed a nice loooooonnnnggg pile that I planned to systematically yard-vac my way along, sucking up the dry dreadfuls into next years' squash food. The only problem was the stray and occasional leaf that was sort of stranded out there in the yard.

"I'm not walking all the way to where that leaf is and rake to where that leaf is over there and bring them over there to that other leaf (and so on)" I thought to myself. I dreamed of efficiency. 

Problem solved: plugging in my apparatus, I went around sucking up each individual leaf until I drew close to the pile. Time consuming? Yes. Muscle straining? A little. But once I got to the pile, it was with great manly joy that I vacuumed up the entire pile, stopping twice to dump the cereal into the garden. How good it felt to stand over the leaves, device in hand, the bag filling with crunchy garden goodness . . . then finally surveying the clean yard when I was finished--felt so good! 


Fast-forward from a couple weeks ago to a couple days ago. I looked out the back door and saw more leaves, noting particularly those loners wandering around the upper portion of the yard. I thought to myself, "Why can't they fall into a pile?" A cloud of non-excitement settled over me as I thought about going around again with my vac to suck those rebellious buggers up. "I'm not raking them, that's for sure." I said to myself.  "Forget that noise," to which I agreed heartily. "What I need is a leaf blower . . ." 

I'm such an idiot. 

Monday, December 11, 2017

Currently Reading

"Finding Everett Ruess by David Roberts, with a foreword by Jon Krakauer, is the definitive biography of the artist, writer, and eloquent celebrator of the wilderness whose bold solo explorations of the American West and mysterious disappearance in the Utah desert at age 20 have earned him a large and devoted cult following. More than 75 years after his vanishing, Ruess stirs the kinds of passion and speculation accorded such legendary doomed American adventurers as Into the Wild’s Chris McCandless and Amelia Earhart."

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