While I was mowing the lawn on Saturday morning (and enjoying a much-needed reprieve from my duties as Mommy) I couldn't help but contemplate the differences between how men and women mow -- their style and motivation. I drafted the perfect blog in my internal monologue, and am now attempting to recreate it. It can't be nearly as good as the original, but I'll give it a shot anyhow:
It occurs to me that most women mow the lawn with one primary objective: to avoid having to start the mower more than once.
We will subject ourselves to the demeaning herky-jerky dance of pushing the mower forward while simultaneously pulling the rip cord four, five and six times to get the machine started initially, though we will choose the most secluded part of the property, away from the street, and out of view of as many neighbors as possible.
However, when it comes to releasing the emergency bar and letting the mower stop to move a gutter, pick up a stick, or merely stop for a drink of water ... it ain't gonna happen.
You see, we are petrified of being perceived as "that silly woman out there trying to mow the lawn" by the men of the neighborhood. These men who have no problem starting the mower within three pulls have no understanding of how humiliating it is to give in, go inside and ask our husbands to start the mower for us.
So we will avoid stopping at any cost.
This may mean running the mower across the driveway and "wasting" gas to get to the unmown part of the lawn.
We may mow over perfectly mown grass multiple times to get the mower turned correctly for the next pass.
We will push the mower until we can go no further and then pull it walking backwards as if we are vacuuming the carpet to get into tiny corners.
We do not understand the need to make perfect tic-tack-toe squares in the lawn by mowing vertically one week and horizontally the next ... I'm going to take as few steps as possible, which means making ninety degree turns and mowing the lawn in one great big square, and I will continue to do so despite those snickers and grins of pity I imagine from you.
And we don't do the same prep you do, either. Once again, I'm taking as few steps as possible. So, yes, I'll move the sandbox and toddler climber and lawn chair before I start.
But when it comes to the gutters, I'll wait until I am close, hold the emergency bar with one hand, and lean over to toss the spout into the already mown part of the lawn.
You see, guys, unless that lady is single or mowing the lawn is a chore she has agreed to share in a "progressive - she mows and he cleans"- kind of household, there are two reasons that woman is out there mowing:
1. Her husband has just completed some mammoth chore and she is feeling guilty.
2. She can't stand to see it get any longer or go without trimming for one more day.
Either way, she is out of her element and into his territory. She isn't trying to show you up or looking for your pity.
She is willing to be covered in sweat and grass clippings and look a little silly for her guy.
So give her some respect. And while you're at it, say "thanks."