Fiction: The lawn chronicles
I cannot keep up with the vegetation growth in the yard. The hot days and rains have been relentless this summer. To me, the whole thing means death to me and the poor lawn mower. The last time I mowed, the poor thing was choking on the amount of grass and weeds that the blades cut through over the course of three hours under the blazing sun. This summer, I feel like I have been living in the Brazilian rain forest. Indeed, I realize that I’m being dramatic, but I confess that I’m sick of mowing the weeds and grass in my yard. I have been mowing, weed-whacking, weed-pulling, weed-killing for more than a quarter century.
I figure that if I cannot beat them, join them. By that I mean, stop mowing the lawn. With lawn mowing, I’m well past my expiration date. I now have the craziest yard overgrowth ever seen in Suburbia, USA. I’m done Finished. Fin! Done! I’m on lawn mowing strike and quite proud of that fact.
With the lawn overgrowth, I could care less what the homeowner’s association or the city is thinking. I refuse to be a conformist. The truth is, this amount of vegetation has taken on its own beauty. Those who view my new overgrown lawn may interpret it as they see fit. I call the whole thing a “Lawn Rorschach Test.” What do you see in this design? I bet most people see what I see: a giant woman who traipsed through the forest, collapsed from light-headedness, fell asleep and was over-taken by the vegetation. While others might look at the scene as a place for serenity, a place to set up and enjoy a picnic on a cool late-morning summer day complete with wines and cheeses.
Those people with no imagination would look at this lawn design, act horrified and run to the nearest Home Depot to purchase tons of Spectracide bottles to kill everything in sight. Worse yet, there are those who look at my lawn as an excuse to knock down my house, level everything and as the old song goes, “Put up a parking lot.”
I have grown to love my yard’s overgrowth. Love it or hate it, it stands out in the neighborhood. It’s something that screams, “I’m original and not like the rest of you – what with your well-manicured, lush, deep-green, chemically-treated, artificially irrigated lawns that are well-maintained by foreign labor! So there! I can have my picnic and eat the cake from it, too!”
Some would say that my thought about the chemically-treated lawns maintained by others is my “lawn envy” coming through in this essay. I feel sorry for people who feel the need to engage in these measures just to have a nice lawn. It’s expensive not to mention environmentally destructive. To me, the world would be better off if we all just let our lawns take their natural courses. Some would say that if yard-owners like myself ditched yard maintenance, we would put many in the lawn industry out of work. That would be a challenge indeed for which I have no answers. We are a smart species who always find ways to re-invent ourselves. Indeed, that is easier said than done, but I have a lot of hope for our futures.
Is this truly “lawn envy?” Methinks not.