Somebody needed a haircut in the worst way

Ten inches of rain in June.

More on July 1.

A whole bunch of writing and working on my busy schedule. I could practically hear the grass growing in the backyard of our Little Bitty in the Syracuse city neighborhood of Eastwood.

Over-wrought lawn.

Over-wrought lawn.

Into every life a little rain must fall … yeah, right.

The Lush Life might be OK if you’re sitting around listening to Billy Strayhorn’s jazz classic or even if you’re thinking of the bigger figurative picture, dreaming of having it all, maybe having some grapes fed to you …

But this green gnarly knot of bladed lawn, two weeks in the making, had to finally be dealt with by me and my gas push mower. So slowly I pushed and stopped and unclogged the chute emptied the bag.

All is well.

All is well.

Not a bad cut. Not bad at all. Certainly more than a little off the sides.

How long have gone between mows? Would you have taken the catcher off and mulched or emptied the bag a bunch? How much rain have you gotten lately where you live?

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94 thoughts on “Somebody needed a haircut in the worst way

  1. Oh yeah, I remember times when there was no time our lawn was dry enough for weeks and that seems to be when it grows the thickest and longest. Then when the chance does come to mow, it is so heavy that it continuously clogs the blade deck. With my apartment now, I watch while other struggle with this. ๐Ÿ˜€

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    • In your new lower, bigger apartment, you probably have a nicer view of the tussle as well. ๐Ÿ™‚ My lawn grows faster and thicker when wet from rain. When it’s dry it merely sits there. But that’s rare around here, drought stretches, as you know. Knock on wood. In this world tizzy, we have the water.

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      • I actually just checked to see how wet Syracuse was and it is not in the top ten. However, in 2014-2015 it maintained it reputation as the second snowiest in the continental US – second only to Lowell Mass. ๐Ÿ˜€

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      • When we moved into our house I said to my husband, “who’s cutting the lawn? Not me! He looked at me and said, “well not me either!” so when the neighbor’s lawn guy showed up we told him he had a new client! ๐Ÿ™‚ I like to garden, but cutting the grass is a whole ‘nother story!

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      • I hated raking and leaf hauling, Lisa. We had woods behind our house, so I’d rake them and haul them into the woods, and the wind would blow them back into the backyard. Repeat every time my father told me I had to do it. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

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  2. I don’t have to cut grass, Mark, living in an apartment. We have had some rain, some thunderstorms and yesterday we even had hail. We could use more rain here and in BC as there are a lot of wild fires going on right now.

    As per usual, your l’il bitty looks wonderful and I love those red chairs! โค
    Diana xo

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  3. One time when we lived in a house, we actually got told off my neighbor for our unkempt lawn. Not entirely our fault, Mark. The lawn was in disrepair when we bought the house and, you know, us with our black thumbs…well. Yes, very little rain here in CA and they are being very strict about when to water and when not to. The little lawn on the front of our building has patches that look like straw. Yours, on the other hand, is very attractive.

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  4. my garden loves the rain and my lawn as well, so i have to mow when the moment strikes. luckily we’ve had a string of sunny days lately. i usually mow every 10 days or so, depending and just do it without the bag, freestyle )

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    • If I were to do it bagless, Ellie B would forever be tracking clippings throughout the Little Bitty, Beth, so I can’t even consider that. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ I like it for your cottage grounds, though. ๐Ÿ™‚

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  5. Hi Mark,
    Between the boys and I, we usually cut the grass. Your lawn looks lovely. And green (just like me – with envy). Problem with cutting our grass, is there is always a pissing contest about who is going to have the dubious honor of picking up the dog poop – which is quite a sizeable task (think Great Dane). We of course, are on the “Don’t frown on brown” mindset right now – and so the entire city looks awful. People are letting their huge trees die because of it. Starting to look like a bomb zone around here. No rain in sight, although we did have a thunderstorm the other night., We all came out of air-conditioned house to stare up at the sky and ponder why such a thing was happening in July.

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    • I hate to hear of huge trees dying of drought, S.D. Can’t we spare them a cup of water to keep them barely breathing?

      Here’s what I do for the Ellie B doody-bombers, of which there are many. I aim them in the middle of the mower path and hope the suction places them in the middle of the grass clippings. Otherwise, my dear wife Karen takes it upon herself to scoop ’em up with a doggie shovel we purchased and place them in a bag inside a metal pail we bought specifically for that purpose as well. You can spot it in the far top rightt of the long-grass photo, as a matter of fact.

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      • Unfortunately, because of the height and mass of Mikey’s ‘presents’ in our lawn, I am afraid they cannot be run over, they just end up getting smeared as you walk along. Even bigger messy – I know this because I have tried.
        I think as far as the water thing goes, we should all stop eating almonds, the rich almond farmers get the majority of water around here while the rest of us watch our gardens die. Did you know it takes 1 gallon of water to produce 1 almond? It’s crazy!!!!! I guess I shouldn’t complain too much because I have patients whose families live in some of the smaller towns down south and their wells have dried up. So no running water in the house at all. Can’t bathe their children, can’t wash clothes – people donate drinking water – it is really, really awful. Entire towns have simply run out of water.

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      • You live in a nightmare zone, S.D. We need to find a way to distribute the water from here to there. Or purify the ocean water for needed irrigation use. I can’t believe that hasn’t been solved. Wait. Then we’d be messing with that ecosystem, wouldn’t we? We’re screwed, plain and simple if we can’t figure out how to seed the cloulds and make it rain.

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      • Crazy thing is, they have a completely ready-to-go desalination plant I think in Santa Barbara, but the environmentalists are up in arms that we will cause an unbalance in the ocean, and the government doesn’t want to spend the money to start it up (they would rather spend gazillions of dollars on a high-speed rail from San Francisco to LA – that nobody wants). All we can do is pray for a rainy winter (again). I tried a rain dance – didn’t work.

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  6. It’s been raining pretty evenly down here in ‘Bama, Mark. I have to try to mow once a week; even at 10 days’ growth, the lawn turns into a jungle. You have my sympathies doing all that in a push mower.

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    • Hey, my friend, I’m glad you’re getting enough precip in ‘Bama land. It’s not so bad with my 22-inch gas push mower, SiriuzBiz. It only takes me a little more than a half-hour, and I don’t rush it. Have a great Sunday.

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  7. Off and on rain for us too in Florida. We have to mow every week or it looks like a wheat field. The HOA frowns upon that. Yuck, on that push mower. You need to get a gas self-propelled. My weak girl arms would die! LOL! ๐Ÿ˜€

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    • Ours is a gas push, Colleen. Our little city lot doesn’t need the self-propelled. I can push. Still. Yet. Knock on wood. ๐Ÿ˜‰

      Yeah, we have no HOA, so some folks just let it go here. I get antsy when my own gets as long as it was in this before photo. The gnarly ones in the neighborhood twice, three times or even longer … I can’t even hardly look. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

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      • That is why I wanted some rules. I hate when other people don’t take care of their property. Believe me, it happens here even with an HOA. It has been so hot this year that the mowing is kicking my butt! Ron and I split it up. Ah, what do you do? Plug along as usual. Our front yard is large. The back not so much. I liked Arizona. We had rocks. ๐Ÿ˜€

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      • Rocks are nice to look at, Colleen, not so good for cooling off the yard like grass and plants and such. Ah, well, the trade-offs we make, right? I’m glad that you and Ron can split the mowing load, my friend. โค

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    • I’ve gone from way big to this in the very wise house downsize, Bill, and I consider it a blessing. An hour a week of maintenance, max, is enough for me. And I hope you get enough dry spell to cut your Midwestern jungle.

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  8. Hubby mows our lawn (he insists on it). This year has been a battle because, of course, you can’t mow when it’s raining but the rain makes the grass grow more quickly. At about this time last year, the lawn was pretty well burned out and didn’t need mowing.

    I did, however, finally go out and pull those nasty weeds choking the bushes in front, if only because I needed to get away from the construction work for half an hour. Not up to doing flowers this year – maybe next year.

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    • My dear wife Karen is out pulling weeds and trimming right now, CM. She loves to “dig in the dirt,” as she calls it, and I love that about her. Oh, that darn construction at your place!

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      • That is exactly the phrase my middle daughter uses – “dig in the dirt” or “play in the dirt.” She was supposed to come help me (she lives in an apartment and doesn’t have the opportunity), but with the construction, we had to delay things a bit.

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  9. Mark it appears that you have had all our wet weather and we have had your sun – it was 34C here last week. No need to cut the grass for nearly three weeks now! thank you for sending summer our way. It’s looking good at the Itty bitty.

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  10. No lawn to mow here in inner city Liverpool. The weather broke, momentarily with a storm that failed to clear the air. Still I could always sit inside and listen to Billy Strayhorn. I used to use an ice breaker on training courses to get people to introduce themselves by name and organisation and add who they would most like to spend an evening with, I was always prepared for this – that one person for me is Billy Strayhorn. By all accounts a lovely guy who knew how to party.

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  11. I don’t do any of the mowing. Under my breath, I just added, “Or it would freakin be mowed…” but that’s beside the point ๐Ÿ˜‰
    I don’t know what The Mister does. He sometimes bags and dumps the clumps in beds I want to leave fallow, or if he barely mows much, he’ll leave it lying there. I really don’t care, but I listen to him go on about it like he’s performed brain surgery, as much as he’ll listen to me talk about basil and garlic presses and how the shallots are too sweet — it’s a happy marriage, we’re just grateful the other does these things, you know? LOL

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  12. I did most of the watering and mowing of our 50 x 75′ L.A. backyard for the twenty years we had a lawn back there. The proof is that when I became a teacher and no longer had the time, the grass disappeared. ๐Ÿ™‚ In F#cking Florida, I did front, back, and sides–pain in the rear around the trees I planted. But I liked knowing I was doing it myself. Now, I have no lawn, or trees, or flowers, or birds, or bunny, or turtles. I have decided I’m going to try to move again and get them all back.
    ๐Ÿ™‚

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  13. Very nice article Mr. B! Good history reminder and warnings. I love your writing btw. ๐Ÿ™‚ We used to let the kids play with sparklers during the 4th but that’s it. We definitely prefer to leave it to the pros.

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    • Yeah, the neighbors haven’t gotten that petition all the way up and down the block yet, Scott. Farm equipment. You know that from Herkimer. You’ll be OK. Teach the oldest. Wet lawns stink, my friend. Big time.

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  14. SO much rain here. Colder than usual and rain and rain and rain. Anybody have an easy-to-follow schematic for an ark???
    We have a lawn service, which is good because when the grass gets long at all you can see there’s not so much grass as a field of clover and weeds…

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