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Grandpa's Push-Mower: A Slick Con Job If There Ever Was One

I was born in the south. I live in the south and will die in the south. This is only a small part of the memories I share.

Reminds me of my grandpa's con.

Reminds me of my grandpa's con.

To be totally honest, push mowers are the pits. They are "the" lowest form of machinery that mankind ever invented accidentally. Was the push mower built on a Friday evening when the workers all wanted to hit the bar and get wasted? Or did the plant manager give the workers a stiff lecture about "Big Things For Workers to Observe," such as: arriving on time at work, telling the boss a lie to stay home to get over a massive hang-over from the party last night and turning out less-than-quality merchandise such as this poor sample of what was going to be America's hottest lawnmower, but some distant-thinking workers were gazing after a lovely girl worker and pur only two wheels on the mower.

I bet the main CEO was ready to beat the workforce to a pulp, but his team of Labor Relations lawyers and other Fair Labor Dealings rep's prevented him from doing it. Instead, he charged back into his plush office, drank a bottle of anti-acid for his ulcer, and got on his private line to hire a good head-hunter to get him a good position with a good check and pension.

What dreams the upper management have in private. I was never plagued with such problems. But the topic of this hub is very serious with me. You see, I hate the push mower, any push mower, foreign or American made, with a red passion. I hate to see these relics of a day gone by when American men got out on the weekend and pushed their mowers and received tans that made their wives to be romantic toward them and the men also lost a fair amount of weight from the push lawn mowing.

Well what's done is done. Water under the bridge and all that gooey stuff. But honestly, the very first time that I laid eyes on a push mower, I hated it. And I hated it instantly. It was rusty and so antique, but so were my grandparents, who weren't that rusty, but they were of antiqued age. But my grandpa showed me his push mower that I had to work out from under the housea and all the time I was thinking that I had a great prize to get. Well, if you call a lot of spiders and their webs, rusty to cover the State of Michigan, then you knew that this disformed machine had to be a push mower.

I looked with suspicion at my grandpa. He was showing his half way smile that rivaled that of the old riverboat gamblers and said that he wanted his lawn to be cut and said that this mower was what I needed. Suddenly his elderly bones quickly bolted away. Now you had to know my grandpa. At the age that I'm sharing this, he had to be a good, seasoned age of 82, but he moved like a scalded cat. Even I, the young age of 11, was a bit jealous. So there I was, ready to take the controls of his push mower.

The rest of the morning, although sunny with a nice breeze, was designed to be pleasant, but turned to a harsh, back-breaking, drudgery. Not your average labor of love, but old-fasioned sweat-soaking drudgery. It didn't take me long until I knew that grandpa had suckered me like a mideivel jester with bells. Not really. I actually felt more like an oaf. What made this worse was I could see grandpa and grandma behind the thin white curtains of their living room. I knew that they were laughing their butts off and pointing at me for being such a fool.

Maybe I deserved it. Maybe I didn't, but if you can relate to the topic of his hub, then you will understand. With the first push of the mower, I didn't cut that much grass. The blades were dull and the two wheels barely moved. All in a great scheme of deception of grandpa. This stunning situation led me to believe (right then) that I thought that God loved all old people like a passion. Some may be. All? nada. Honestly, my grandparents were not bad folks at heart, but they knew the fine art of pulling a good con job. Except this time, it was all grandpa. Grandma was too wise to get involved.

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The temperature rose. But that told about my anger that was building. But the morning temperature was as hot, and I knew every moment that I had been taken. I could have made a nice chant to cut-back the vengeance that I had for grandpa. "Push Mower! Push Mower! Where doy you live? I live in a house and you live with a mouse!" I never said that I was a sharp chant writer. Not even that worked. Now it was almost noon and I had yet to cut one bit of grass. I was at the point of just hurling the old relic disguised as a push mower into the nearby ditch nearby grandpa's drive. But then, I had the makings of a good notion.

I looked at the old push mower and finally thought to show it some needed-compassion. No more using curse words underneath my breath as most 11-year-olds do, so I walked back and took hold of the handles and then with one swoop, I turned the mower upside down--the blade was now up and not moving and the two wheels ran fine when I pushed them as hard as I could and ended-up having a great time that afternoon.

I admit that I did feel a bit of sadness as I returned the push mower back underneath my grandparents' house. Then like clockwork, my grandpa hobbled (a nice act) to see what I had done.

"So, you made my mower a good play pretty," he said looking very stunned. "I thought that you were to cut the grass, but you conned me good, grandson."
"Thanks, grandpa, but I learned from the best."

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What a relic!

What a relic!

© 2021 Kenneth Avery

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