Saturday, August 1, 2009

Funny yard-work story!

Pictures: Rebekah's plants are enjoying a happy summer!

Funny story about mowing the yard. Back-story goes like this: My neighbor is a nurse, and he's always giving me a hard time about the sun."It's not a good idea to mow the grass without a shirt on!" "You really should be wearing a hat!" "The January sun is harsher than most people would think..." that kind of thing.

Well I'm not a huge tanner; never have been never will. I grew up in England where, "Why don't you put this where the sun never shines" actually referred to the entire island. You know, like a synonym: England - aka the U.K. - aka Great Britain - aka Blighty - aka The United Kingdom - aka The British Isles - aka Where the Sun Never Shines...

So anyway, I try to be respectful of my obsessive compulsive "Look out, the death rays will get you!" neighbor - even in light of the fact that he's a heavy smoker and is at slightly more risk than the guy who grew up on a soggy UV-free island, parked against the north coast of Europe.

Consequently, I fired up my lawn mower, waved at him as he climbed in his car, and put on a hat I'd picked up the last time I played golf.

Well, the south side of our house has three Amazon rain trees with a lot of heavy, low hanging branches. I'm walking along behind my Toro, a tad too fast because the drive is broken and I have it hard-wired on "full-speed." I ducked under the first branch, straightened up and - thanks to the wide brim on my hat that put a stop to peripheral vision in the "up" direction - ran full tilt into the next branch without even a nanosecond's warning to slow me down.

I had (in the vernacular of hand-to-hand fighting... or in this case, tree limb-to-head ambushing) my clock cleaned. I was down in an instant, flat on my back with tweetie-birds circling just behind my close-tight eyelids. One witness - a golfer looking over the fence for his ball - said I was walking so fast that, when I hit the branch with my head - my legs literally went straight up in the air and I landed in a Fosbery-flopesque fashion.

So here's the question. How much good did the hat actually do me? Sometimes I wonder how often we create new issues in trying to cover as many safety bases as possible? I like my odds better with my eyes wide open.

OK, there it is. There's the real question. What are we doing to make sure our eyes are wide open?

Peace - DEREK


Anonymous said...

Someday let me tell you about the plate glass window I ran into last Sunday on Longboat Key!


ericpet said...

so where are the photos of the offending limbs? The 'scene of the crime'???

Ali Hoad said...

Hi Derek, For Health and Safety gone mad, come back to the UK to see it at insanity levels. You cant cough without it infringing some legal requirement