Sunday, May 08, 2005

The Tragedy of the Garfield Commons

As it turns out, I am becoming more conservative with age.

I am still a card-carrying Democrat, proud to be living and working in blue states, mind you. And you won't find me complaining about paying my fair share of taxes even if my income were to climb into a higher tax bracket (doubtful). (I am, however, benefitting tax-wise from the lack of legality in my life partnership. Thank god I don't have to pay BioMom's tax bracket!).

So, I should say I am becoming less (ahem) idealistic in my middle-middle age.

Today I had devoted one carefully carved out free hour to trimming the ever- increasing height of our grass. All looked favorable. The rain was holding out, and MP3 player in hand, I was mentally ready for the first mow of the season.

When I approached the first incline, however, I reached for the leaver that engages the automatic back wheels and felt no resistance. Upon investigation, its wire was hanging free, frayed at the ends. It had, apparently, at some previous time, by some previous co-worker-owner, SNAPPED, thereby permenantly disengaging the back wheels.

O.k. so you might ask what's the big deal you wimp!?! So you have to push a little?

You haven't seen our hill.

The incline on our front embankment would make Evan Basso tremble.

The Twin Cities City Pages has voted it the "Second-Best Sledding Site" for 2004 and 2005.

Think San Francisco. Think me mowing with switchbacks. Think Lombard Street.

So, after an hour and a half of sweat and toil, mowing with only my own undeveloped upper-body muscle by carefully balancing the extent to which I can reach halfway down the hill from the top without falling down with the momentum of the mower, and, with a run at it from the curb, push the mower up, I am finished. (With a line of unmowed grass running across the middle of the embankment where the down and the up strokes refused to meet. Think: the original "mow" hawk.).

But finished in more than one sense.

I'm also finished with the collectively owned mower.

The tragedy of the commons didn't mean so much to me in college when my roommate (Cousin) refused to do the dishes and we'd let them pile up to the ceiling, ultimately washing one necessesary dish at a time. But now, the thought of dragging that washed-up lawnboy into the shop (again) for someone else's eff-up, is more than I can take. And, with us having the steepest grade, we're not exactly loaded with bargaining power or the ability to wait out or co-collective members in the "who's taking it to the shop this time" game.

I know what I'm asking for for Father's Day!


Cousin said...

I NEVER refused to do the dishes. I was just REALLY busy studying!

giddings said...

I hesitate to reveal what it is you were studying. . .

just sayin' said...

Is it possible to approach the hill from an angle instead of straight up and down?

Anonymous said...

Hey Morgan,
How 'bout you come on over and approach it from an angle for her?

giddings said...

RE: From an angle... Its possible, but (and I've tried this) something happens with the oil and the mower gets all effed up.

giddings said...

RE: From an angle... Its possible, but (and I've tried this) something happens with the oil and the mower gets all effed up.

Anonymous said...

life would be MUCH easier is Morgan just came over abd did it for you!!

Anonymous said...

What you *should* ask for for Father's Day:

Landscape that slope into terraced gardens so you don't have to mow it again, period!