Because our house sits on a lot that is big and hilly, I hated mowing with the heavy, loud power push mower. To cover its roar, I'd crank up my iPod so loud that my ears would ring for hours after. When the mower finally quit for good, I did not mourn it. I thanked it for its service and started looking for reel mowers on the internet.
One of the benefits of the reel mower is the dandy little sound it makes. I doesn't rattle my teeth or make my hands go numb from vibration. It's tinny, almost musical. Old School. Sometimes I pretend it's a lovely day in 1952 and I've got nothing else to worry about but the wild prosperity that's ahead for the American middle class.
Last night my mind was on magpie overdrive calculating the number of calories I was burning and trying to figure out if it was 462 or 642 degrees so I used my iPod for distraction while I mowed. The little shuffle is a mashup of songs ranging from screamo to Smetana. At one point, a raft of 90s music came on and I lost myself in the music as I pushed the mower in a square that grew smaller and smaller.
Dada's Dizz Knee Land came on and I was transported to 1992.
A neighbor drove by and honked his horn and gave me a thumbs up, tugging me back from my reverie. I gave him two thumbs up back and he stopped. "Now that's something you don't see every day," he said through his open window.
"This mower? Yeah, we just got it when our old power mower finally gave out. I'll never run out of gas with this thing."
He looked down at the mower. "Oh. Well, that's okay I guess, but I was talking about your air guitar solo."