Friday, April 15, 2011

Shooting the Lawn Mower I

This is a copy of a post I sent to an email list. It's easier to repost this than do a new blog post.

Subject:  I'd Like to Shoot the Lawn Mower

but we really need it.

My Dad has 7 acres that he's kept mowed for nearly 4 decades. He's 90 now. He's determined he can still mow. He's so weak he can't engage the brake enough to start the mower without running the battery down now.

We just got it fixed to the tune of a tune-up, a new wheel because Dad runs over anything and everything, a blade sharpening, and a visit to the doctor’s office for Uncle who was helping sharpen said blade and ripped a 1x2 inch flap of skin off his upper arm when the wrench slipped. Ewww.

I went to the bathroom to get the first aid supplies.  Dad had been in there. Between the odor of  the bathroom and the sight of Uncle's skin, I threw up in the sink. Uncle valiantly said he'd go to the doctor's office and wisely fled.

Uncle mowed the back yard this morning. While my cousin was visiting, Dad snuck out and started mowing the "back 5." No one noticed he wasn't in the den, bad us. Tonight about 7 he comes tottering into the kitchen telling me the mower's broke.

Sigh. I tromp down to the fence line. No key. Tromp back up to house. Argue with Dad over keys on table not being lawn mower key. Convince him to check his pockets. Doh! Mower key in pants pocket. Tromp back to fence line and mower. Dead battery. Now I have to get help to get the mower up to the house to put it on a charger.

Three weeks ago, we repaired his golf cart to the tune of over $300 because he put kerosene in the gas tank. I didn't even think he could lift the full kerosene can, much less realize he didn't know a red gas can from a blue kerosene can anymore.

I've made an executive decision. No more access to mower or cart even on our property. Keys hidden at all times. Realizing that even if old, you can't cut people off from everything important in their lives, I'd tried to let him do what he could. His limited income can't afford it anymore.

Now laying odds on whether:
He shoots me.
I shoot him.

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