Some of my long time blogging friends may remember that I moved about 6 months ago. I live in a nice suburban neighborhood with identical houses and identical yards as far as the eye can see. The electric and phone lines are buried underground so as not to spoil the picturesque view with ugly poles and wires. Every morning when it’s quiet and the streets are empty I look out my window to see the sun rise over “my” neighborhood. As I take in this view I feel like the king of suburbia. It’s perfect. A little too perfect. In the evening couples walk their dogs and greet each other cheerily. Joggers and roller bladers cruise the streets looking healthy and wholesome. Kids play street hockey and skateboard. If a Hollywood director wanted to cast a neighborhood to play the picture-perfect, average American neighborhood, my neighborhood would be a shoo-in for the part. There’s just one problem. Everyone else’s lawn.
As far as I can tell, every other homeowner in my neighborhood is psychotic about their lawn care. I have no idea how anyone with a full-time job can devote as much time to landscaping and grooming their lawns as the people do. The thing is, I don’t even see them doing it. It’s like they’ve got Edward Scissorhands living in their homes and he only comes out at night. Don’t get me wrong, I’m no slacker. I mow my lawn often enough that if I parked my car in the yard I could still find it the next day. I once owned a pool table whose surface wasn’t as smooth as these people’s yards. And it’s not just the grass. It’s the little scenic settings they create. Little benches in a tiny grove of trees in the corner of the yard. A rustic wheelbarrow with flowers growing out of it just so. Not a tree or bush is without perfect little border blocks surrounding it. It’s like I’m living in The Stepford Neighborhood. Talk about peer pressure! I’m afraid that if I skip mowing my lawn one week they’ll form a lynch mob and storm my suburban castle with torches and pitchforks, being careful not to step on any landscaping on the way over. I refuse to cave into this peer pressure to meet their insane standards of lawn care. I do have a plan though. You knew I would didn’t you?
I’m going to buy lawn fertilizer. Lots of it. No, not for my yard you idiot! For theirs! At night while my neighbors sleep, exhausted from another day of landscaping, I’ll be out there fertilizing their lawns, causing them to grow at an astronomical rate. Their lawns will be like those Play-Doh people where you can see the hair growing right out their heads. There will be no way they can keep up! And I’ll be planting weeds everywhere, even if I have to pollinate them myself. I’ll have the best yard in the neighborhood within a week! (pause for maniacal laughter) This should work perfectly, unless Edward Scissorhands catches me.