Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Incident on Canadawa

Somebody help. Next door, a gas-powered leaf-blower has just jumped right off the back of one of these summer landscaping guys and started running away from him. You should see it! -- it's crossin the driveway and goin onto the lawn. The kid appears unhurt, but dazed, then again he looked like a stoner to begin with. Dum-de-dum-dum. Now the damn blower is traversin the creek, headed straight toward my neighbor's outdoor gas grill. Geez, it's a snarly, nasty beast. I mean, all leaf-blowers are noisy as hell, but this is the first one I've ever seen run off by itself. The poor grill is hunched down in a defensive posture.

What are we gonna do? Call 911? The cops are effin broke. They're down in the valley tryin to raise cash so they can get their uniforms washed -- upright citizens've been complainin that it's gettin a little gamy inside those cruisers. Plus the chief is on vacation somewhere "down south" and there's nobody to answer the phones anyway.

Shite. Suppose this effin machine incites the other power tools to join in a general rebellion? You can sense that the mower and its sidekick, the edger, are just itchin to raise a racket. Then there's that dirty little trouble-maker, the hedge-clipper. Lousy SOB's been sittin there for weeks waitin for something like this to happen. They're all just poised there on the truck-bed, doin their best to assess the situation, waitin to see if this kid is gonna regain control of his blower before makin their move.

Right now the blower and grill are eyein each other in a Mexican stand-off. The word is
warily. The landscapin dude is crawlin forward on all fours, eyes like pancakes. I guess he's gonna try and sneak around to grab a hold of the blower's choke. If he fails -- and he ain't lookin very confident -- a couple of the mature oak-leaf hydrangeas back there seem to be ready to take matters into their own hands. And once the natural world starts to get involved, all bets are off. Who knows how this thing'll play out.

Everybody's frozen in place. The blower is wedged between the back steps and the patio wall. It can't go forward toward the grill, and it's too effin stubborn to back up. The grill is still scared, but it's past the panic stage. The hydrangeas are clearly content to remain stationary if nobody else moves. The dude is preparin to lunge at the blower. The power tools back in the truck may be figurin that the opportunity for action is gone. They're sullen and quiet.

The dude leaps across the patio and grabs the blower from behind. A struggle ensues, arms flailin, nozzle whippin along the ground like a snake, motor coughin and spittin, dude yowlin like a stuck pig. Everybody else stands back. The dude finds the choke and gives it a quick turn. The motor sputters and dies. The blower gives one uncanny shudder, then lies still. Man has conquered machine once again.

My other neighbor -- the one with the two annoying terriers -- screams at the top of her lungs, "Next time use a rake!" All is quiet for a long breath, then the birds start singin as the dude carries the blower's corpse back to the truck.

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