Thursday, August 12, 2010

The Grass Always Seems Greener on the Virtual Felt

If the sight of the blue skies fills you with joy, if a blade of grass springing up in the fields has power to move you, if the simple things of nature have a message that you understand, rejoice, for your soul is alive. – Eleonora Duse

There are few things worth doing that are more ephemeral than a freshly mowed, trimmed, and blown lawn. Fleeting as it is, the weekly completion of this set of tasks brings a certain satisfaction.  I guess I should be thankful I have a beautiful lawn to maintain, I am sure there are plenty of folks that don’t but wish they did.
I shouldn’t lament my fate of sweating away the afternoons outside rather than playing some poker at one of my favorite online poker sites in the cool comfort of my home on scorching summer days. If one has the time, playing some online poker is a fine way to spend a lazy afternoon.

However, living in the verdant south, frequent lawn maintenance is a reality of life. If one falls behind, one pays the price of working extra hard to restore it and no amount of online poker, not even winning at Triple 8 Poker can make me forget about the sweaty reality waiting for me outside.

When I was a youth (online poker did not even exist) and tasked with mowing the family’s lawn, I would complain to my father that by fertilizing (the lawn) he was just making my job more difficult. I just didn’t appreciate the desire to have a lush, beautiful lawn and the sense of pride it evokes. As a homeowner now myself, I get it. Don’t get me wrong, far from being one to obsess over the lawn, I just know it has to get done and one may as well try to enjoy it, too.

This weekend, I was pleasantly surprised to see that the pecan tree I planted 6 years ago (just prior to my first son being born) has sprouted its first pecans. All my fruit trees produced fruit the 2nd year they were in the ground but the pecan tree never had until this year. I had actually been working in the yard all morning (without noticing them) before I finally looked up and saw the lovely little bunches of still green nuts all over the tree. My thoughts, of course, were elsewhere all morning imagining I was getting the nuts on the green felt (sigh).

The heat and humidity make it an almost unbearable task in the hottest months but during the more comfortable months, working out on the lawn can be downright pleasant. There is certainly no denying the pleasure of relaxing on the lawn, grilling some meat (and a few vegetables), and enjoying a few cold ones after the job is done but what I am really looking forward to is passing the torch (of lawn maintenance and its odd sense of satisfaction) on to my boys. Now, where’s my laptop? The virtual felt beckons!