mad anthony

Rants, politics, and thoughts on politics, technology, life,
and stuff from a generally politically conservative Baltimoron.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Yard over-worked...

When I bought Casa De Mad, my sprawling circa 1978, 1200 square foot townhouse in suburban Baltimore County, I had visions of having a lush green yard, the kind that neighbors envy. Then I remembered that I hated doing yard work.

Luckily, the first year I moved in, one of my neighbors offered to mow my lawn in return for borrowing "my" (left by the previous owners) lawnmower. Eventually, though, one of the wheels fell off my lawnmower and it became obvious that it was time for me to take over. Since I couldn't justify maintaining a gas mower for my tiny patch of grass, I bought a manual-reel mower from It works well, except that the tiniest twig will make it stop.

I put off mowing the lawn as long as I could, but when my next-door neighbors (a pair of recent college grads and their girlfriends.. and, frequently on weekend nights, about 20 of their closest drunk friends) mowed theirs, it became obvious that I would have to suck it up and mow. So Friday night, with a sky that was clear and a gym that was closed for an employee appreciation day, I mowed. Then I fired up the weedwacker that I bought last year and never used, and wacked some weeds. Then I installed some solar lights I had bought at the end of last year - made out of brushed nickel, instead of soda-bottle plastic like my previous ones. Then I raked leaves.

Yes, I know. Raking leaves is something you are supposed to do in the fall. Which I did, using my leaf vac to drag several giant bags of leaves - despite having a yard the size of a postage stamp, and despite not having any trees in said yard. But I was still able to pick 3 bags of leaves just out of the backyard, and there are more left, plus some in the front. Obviously, I didn't get every leaf last year, but I also suspect that some of them blew in over the winter from neighbors who didn't get every leaf either.

I still need to do some more raking - in the back, and in the front. I've got weeds in the back that need to be wacked and a shed door that is no longer attached to my shed. And then there are bigger issues - the giant hole in my back yard, the beds in the front and back that are full of ugly white stone and plants that resemble the stuff that grows in the kind of fields that they find dead bodies in on true-crime shows. I also have been saying for the last 2 years that I would get a fence installed in the back for privacy, but I have yet to.

I want to have a decent looking yard - I want to start spending time reading in the back yard. I'm planning on having some people over for a barbecue in the next few weeks, and a big summer party, and I'd like it to look good for those things. But at the same time, I really don't like doing yard work - I'd rather be at the gym, or blogging, or reading, or writing ebay descriptions, or anything that doesn't involve, dirt, bugs, and leaves. So my guess is that my beds will continue to look like a bad science project, and none of my neighbors will envy my grass.

Except, hopefully, the drunks next door. I might not have the best lawn on the block, but I do need to do just enough to not have the worst.


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