Bob tries to forget mower miseries

Bob tries to forget mower miseries
If it weren't for power mowers, I think I'd have a sizable nest egg built up. In 37 years on the farm they have cost us more money and more miseries than I care to remember.

It all started with a small International Harvester Cub tractor which I never should have gotten rid of, but I did! It had a mower mounted beneath it and it was perfect for our two acres of rough lawn.

But I was beguiled by the new models I saw in the ads, so I traded it off. Then the fun began!

First off, neither Phyllis nor I could start it.

It turned out that the solenoid (whatever that is) was giving us trouble. All we had to do was give it a couple whacks (the solenoid, after we found out where it was located) and it would start.

Then we started mowing – but the belt which activated the blades came off, and we had to wait until our son-in-law came over to put it back on. (I don't know anything about mechanics so help was needed.)

I did know enough to keep the oil up, but when I poured it in, I spilled a lot. Maybe that's why the engine smoked so much? Or was there something else wrong with the machine?

We bought lots of mowers from different places, figuring that would change our luck. But it didn't!

Time and time again we had to take our mowers in to get them fixed. They spent more time coming and going when they should be cutting grass.

There were other complications, too. I can remember a wet season when the mower we had then got stuck in the mud, and we had to get another tractor to pull us out.

Then there were all the mole hills which we had to mow over. Phyllis did much of the mowing, and I swear that the mole hills caused her to come in, dirty and grimy, after a session on the mower.

I got the job of cleaning up afterwards when we discovered that the grass clippings built up to impede the blades from turning. I had to lie down on the dirty floor of the granary (where we kept the mowers) and use my fingernails to loosen the clogged-up mess.

It wasn't so bad – until the flies covered my face, and the dog started to lick it.

But there's more to tell:

About the thorny locust trees which caused the flat tires I had to go to town to get vulcanized – and when I'd put one on, another would lose its air.

About the time I cut the asparagus down because I didn't turn fast enough.

About the dozen small apple trees I foolishly planted in our lawn which we had to circle around each time we mowed.

No wonder I'm so glad to be in town where somebody else has to worry about those blankety-blank machines. I'll have to fret about how I can pay for our grass cutting – but it will be cheaper than buying a new mower!

© 2008 Robert F. Karolevitz

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