For Leaf Blowers Everywhere
Leaf blowers of every creed in color — both documented and undocumented — I feel your pain. Any time of year can be especially difficult, with thousands upon thousands of leaves fluttering in the breeze and scattering incessantly all over streets, lawns, and sidewalks across America.
Even when it’s not autumn, a windy day is like a bad case of tree dandruff, and the leaves just won’t stop. All that fascist foliage is probably right back in the pile of dirt you so thoroughly blasted away outside people’s bedroom windows at 7:00 am.
Listen up Leaf blowers. You have a thankless and difficult job. To most people, you just blast away and make a lot of painful noise, usually very early in the morning. Unfortunately, many don’t fully understand the great importance of leaf blowing. This misunderstanding is probably because of the fact that the dirt and leaves getting blasted off the sidewalk onto the street are sloshed right back where they were by the street sweepers at 3 am.
But au contraire! Leaf blowers, you hold the power of the wind in your hands, and with such power comes great irresponsibility. Being the God of Wind during the morning shift is no easy task, especially with leaves being your diminutive peasants fleeing your unharnessed power.
Consequently, it’s no wonder leaf management can be so addictive. Many leaf blowers have trouble sleeping, particularly on Monday nights. But really, how could anyone sleep with all those leaves fluttering around all over the place?
Another triggering situation is when you’re taking a romantic stroll with your darling, which can quickly turn into a nightmare as you shudder in horror at the leaves fluttering above a tree-lined avenue.
But leaf blowers, there is hope. Now is the time to take control before things get out of hand. You don’t want to be the one leaf blowing at 4:00 am or blasting the same pile of dirt for 30 minutes. Or God forbid, you find yourself pushing 90 years of age with a hip replacement and leaf blowing on a steep roof. In that case, I truly hope you’re well insured.
You know you’ve really hit rock bottom when you’re leaf blowing in a rainstorm. Don’t think it can happen to you? I have witnessed all of these scenarios on several occasions.
The first step is recognizing when appropriate leaf management turns from an aesthetic manipulation of outdoor turf into a battle with your imaginary demons.
Please step away from the leaves and repeat after me: There are no sidewalk ninjas lurking under that crunchy path waiting to nunchuck and slap chop your unsuspecting ankles. Let go of the obsessive desire to obliterate wayward leaves and lay bare the cold gray pavement.
Rein in the power and might of that wind cannon and use it sparingly. Consider, perhaps the more Zen practice of raking and reflect upon the painful blisters that lawn implements will produce. I was always told as a child, when wanting to take up the leaf blower, of the character that blisters bestow.
Fluttering leaves on a brick lane, illuminated with an apricot hue filtering through the setting sun — what a pretty sight, like a Thomas Kinkade print in the lobby of a Holiday Inn.
A single external combustion leaf blower also burps up the equivalent exhaust fumes of 80 cars on a highway. You can’t admire air pollution like a painting but I’m sure it makes up a beautiful part of the hazy smog on the horizon.
Try if you can to savor the crunching leaves beneath your feet and be mindful of your responsibility. Leaf blowers remind me of that biblical verse in Ecclesiastes: “To everything, there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven…” It also doesn’t mention an effing thing about leaf blowing.
For more film, TV, and culture articles from Jesse Whitman, visit dinnerandmovienight.com.