Monday, May 7, 2007


Springtime brings out a bad side of me...more specifically, I don't like yard work. Besides being time consuming, tedious and dirty...yard work can also be expensive...and depending on your tolerance to insects, quite annoying...nevertheless, two things are far worse than all else:

#1- The risk and inevitability of personal injuries.


#2 - The risk and inevitability of personal injuries.

For those of you who are more observant than the others you may have noticed that I wrote; the risk and inevitability of personal injuries, twice. The reason for that is simple, (and I am paraphrasing one of my loyal readers MSLemma), I REALLY don't like personal injuries.

I think my problem started when I began weeding the flower beds out front. Energized by my success, I shrugged off the inherent aches and pains, and spruced up the backyard, the next day. We have Florida-Room that has leaders and gutters. Even though I installed "gutter-guards" several years ago, I still need to check up there once a year. It should be noted that I use a five foot ladder and I stand on the next to last rung.

It should also be noted that while up there, all I can think about is-- I AM NOT GOING TO FALL OFF THIS DAMNED LADDER. I think that way in general but it is also still fresh in my mind that one of my readers PERRI, fell off a ladder last fall and he got messed-up physically. He missed a lot of work and then once back, the embarrassment of re-explaining what had befallen him, almost killed him.

So I'm up there on this bright sunny but windy day on my tip-toes, thinking about NOT FALLING when I hear an unusual motorized sound. I look up, and crane my neck but can't seem to spot the sound. For a split second I look directly into the sun as I get a glimpse of a WWI-era bi-plane. At that precise moment, I get a blast of vertigo that causes me to swoon plus a wind gust like no other that day shudders my whole body. Luckily, I caught myself and clung to the Florida room's roof for a second or two. I got my bearings, scurried down and kissed mother earth, A. K. A. my deck.

The next day my wife tells me that I did such a nice weeding job that she now wants to balance our front yard by getting more decorative the ones we already have on the right side This way, we can better "contrast" our flower beds and the lawn on the left side, (you can see where cable channel 54 comes in "handy").

This little project took us to the Somers Point K-Mart. Side by side we carefully examined each piece of masonry before loading the 70 bricks onto a flatbed cart, (editor's note, when you handle any quantity of bricks, wear gloves), . After paying, we re-loaded them into our van. I didn't want to seem like an alarmist but that TON OF BRICKS was really squashing the rear tires down and one looked almost flat. Forward and onward, we made it home and we unloaded the bricks. The tires survived.

Two days later, the rear passenger side tire was almost flat. I filled it was air on my way to work. After work, at 4AM, the tire was again badly deflated but there was enough air to get me to the 24-HOUR filling station on the White Horse Pike. Of course they were closed and the air hoses weren't left outside. But that's okay, three miles up is another station...yes they were closed too and their air hoses were also disconnected. Another mile up, I went into a station that is always closed and their hoses weren't there either. I was beginning to feel deflated! Don't these guys know that at 75c a shot, they are sitting on a goldmine...even when they aren't there.

As I entered Absecon, just before the Sunoco by the Hi-Point Tavern, the tire blew. I rode the rim until I could park it safely. I then froze my butt off and walked a mile to the convenience store (Wawa) to call a taxi. The wait and resulting 5 mile ride took an hour and cost me $17 plus I ruined the tire by riding the rim.

The moral of the story is, nothing good comes from yard work but you still got to do it. So hang on to roof of your Florida-Room and bring a jacket to work even if you think you don't need it.

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