Wednesday, June 8, 2016

I Fought the Lawn and the Lawn Won. 6-7-16

Mowing is the act of empty harvesting. Nothing is collected from the farming of grass in a lawn unless the farmer composts, as I do. Worse, some grass farmers do collect their harvest yet send it to rot in a landfill somewhere. Frequently, I wonder if hundreds of years from now if people won’t view the act of having a lawn as a form of insanity. It’s odd that in a cemetery we will bury people so they do not decompose and in that cemetery we will grow a plant that will never be useful. There is a lot wrong with how we view both life and death.

A little over six inches fell in two days and it’s been ten days since I last mowed. That means if I wait until the weekend I might lose sight of the dogs in the back yard, or what is left of it. The Cousins have totally wrecked most of it so there’s less mowing, but what is left is harder to mow. The Cousins, I hope, will soon return home to their mother, and she can supervise their mining operations. I wish them all good luck and perhaps the Cousins will one day unearth a time capsule or perhaps a mammoth skeleton. I just hope they don’t dig up the sceptic tank.

There’s a new story floating around in my brain somewhere. It’s undefined, totally not really there, but I can feel something trying to form in there somewhere. The big question I have is this one, “Will anyone ever be able to pinpoint the physical area of the brain where this is happening and explain it?” Unless it’s in the same area of the brain where illusions, hallucinations, and delusions hang out, of course, it might forever remain a mystery.

I consider this concept and realize the same organ of my body where the ideas for fiction form is the same organ I’m trying to analyze the all of this with. It’s like looking in the mirror and asking the person looking out at you what they’re doing. I pause for a moment and sneeze and realize that I’ve reached a Zen point in the task at hand. I can mow forever if I can only keep trying to figure out if my brain can figure itself out.

Another good question would be if I possess the language to understand the mind’s function to explain it to myself. If I went into a state of mind where I ask myself to explain what was happening would I know how to address the question properly? Or am I hamstrung by my lack of basic knowledge as to what’s going on in there? How much of this is a function of genetics? How much of it is guided by my environment or aging, or the pot I smoked in High School, or the fact that I’m pushing a fifty pound mower in ninety degree heat with one hundred and eleven percent humidity? It does take some planning and some strategy to mow and now I wonder if thinking about an idea is my mind’s way of making this task more bearable, and not the mind’s way of trying to figure out an idea. But might it be both at the same time? Perhaps they are exactly the same thing but I lack a word that would describe the events as such.

It does occur to me that I should ask someone about this, Google it, perhaps, or simply start making up words that would describe what I think I am thinking. If given a language to describe itself would the mind be more able to communicate it’s possibilities to the ghost in the machine? But somewhere up there, under the roof with no shingles and the ears that are beginning to malfunction, there is the ghost and also the machine. In less than two liters of semi-fluid and a bunch of chemicals is the mass that is really me, and it’s able, somehow, to use a language that your mass of fluids and chemicals can react to in a way that is consistent with how you feel about the subject.


The mowing path widens and lengthens. More grass is cut and less remains to be cut. Each second of my pushing and sweating means less is left to be done, but it also means I am slowly dying during all of this. Each second is one less I have to live. Each step is another I will never take again. Each thought I have about all of this is one less in the allotted thoughts everyone has in their own lives, large or small, rich or poor, male or female. The idea for a story begins to coalesce around these thoughts even as I wonder if there is something in there somewhere or whether or not I am merely willing it to be. Is there a difference is this at all? The red wasps that live under the eaves interrupt my meditation with a discussion about territory.

They don’t have a real brain, I am told, but at the same time there is a lack of distance that will cause them to react with violence. I cannot reason with them, or live in peace with them, but I am loathe to kill anything simply because it is defending itself. I suspect I will kill them to defend myself. But this is not reasonable or logical to me, that creatures cannot find a common ground.

The mower begins to vibrate terribly and I suspect the blade has worn unevenly and hitting something caused a piece to bend or break or something. I endure this new sensation until I finish and then cut the mower off. Yes, the blade looks bent and worn. It is time for a new one. There is no mechanism for a new mind. The one I have is worn and yet unbroken, and on occasion, misfires, but all in all, I am happy with it. Or, at least it tells me I am. I wonder if these are two in the same, or if there is a word for this.

Take Care,


  1. Frequently, I wonder if hundreds of years from now if people won’t view the act of having a lawn as a form of insanity.

    I think it is now.

    I am loathe to kill anything simply because it is defending itself.

    They are not defending themselves, they are defending territory.
    Wasps would kill you in defense of territory, if they could.
    Countries kill children and other livings things, in the defense of territory.
    You can kill wasps in defense of territory.

    1. I've tried to live in peace with them, but got stung for my trouble.

  2. I remember my Dad taping a spray can to a pole, taping down the nozzle, and shoving up into a nest on the gable of the house. He'd do it at night when they were sleeping, and the can in the hole prevented they from escaping the spray.