THE Idea: Mowing the Lawn Edition

Posted: May 10, 2018 in Tim Braun
Tags: , , , , , ,

It’s a hot summer’s day in Northern Indiana in the mid-1970s. A small boy, anxious to please his parents while at the same time dreaming of the day that he no longer has to do manual labor, dutifully pushes his heavy, greasy red Lawn Boy around the mostly flat lawn. The engine belches out the powerful oily exhaust as the blades whir seamlessly through the Kentucky bluegrass like a hot knife through butter.

As the boy wanders up and down the yard, carving the lawn into a canvas of artistically perfect lines, there is plenty of time for his mind to wander on what he wants to do with his life. If only there were a way to come up with an idea to make everyone’s life easier. To be able to ease the burden not just on himself, but on society as a whole. Something where he would be universally recognized for taking humankind to the next level.

Suddenly, as he is almost finished with the yard and as he looks at the last, long swipe of 6” grass to be scythed down to 2” THE idea comes to him. By cutting this last long strip of grass he will actually be as far away from the shed where the mower is kept as he can possibly be. Thus, he will have to push the trusty Lawn Boy all the way BACK to the shed for no practical benefit as all the grass will have already been cut. THE idea seems so easy that he can’t believe no one ever thought of it before.

THE idea is simply this. When there is a strip of grass still left to be cut to be able to finish the lawn, and said strip of lawn will be completely removed with one pass of the mower, and said mower at the completion of this final run will be located in a spot as far away from its place of final abode as it can possibly be – there needs to be a way to snap your fingers PRIOR to cutting this strip that will allow the Lawn Mowing Gods to remove this final strip by simply being able to snap your fingers. The result of this ingenious invention will be that you will have saved yourselves time and effort on the pointless pushing of the mower. You will simply roll the Lawn Boy into the shed and your day is finished.

Can you believe that no one ever thought of this before? Now I’ll admit that I haven’t been 100% able to put this idea into production as of yet. I’ll say that I’m 80% of the way to this goal in fact. To detail, I’ve been able to learn to snap my fingers, and I’ve been able to realize every single time I cut the grass and this situation exists that the snap needs to work. However, the final actual removal of the grass seems to stubbornly resist my efforts. There was that one evening in 1997 as the sun was going down where I attempted this – and I SWEAR that the grass bustled in a heaving manner – but when I looked in the morning the swath was still there.

As a good father would, the other day I was telling my 19-year old son of this brilliant idea hoping that he would grab the mantle and bring the idea to fruition. He listened intently as I described the problem, the solution, and the progress to date.

He paused after I was finished and looked at me questioningly. He swam the words around his mouth while the thoughts swam around his brain. As they finally poured out of his mouth, my pride became overwhelming…

“If you could do that, why wouldn’t you just snap your fingers and cut the whole lawn…..?”

My boy, he’s just like me.


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