I was supposed to mow the lawn on Saturday. I have a lawn now, because I'm no longer young. I'm that other thing. Not young. Anyway I was supposed to mow it, but I couldn't because I went to a wedding on Friday. It was the wedding of a friend who gave Mrs. Culinarian and me specific orders to overserve ourselves. I have some good friends.
Anyway, we went to the wedding, at the Franciscan monastery near Catholic University, and after the lovely ceremony I had about 47 glasses of wine. And a few vodka tonics. Mrs. Culinarian suggested -- then demanded -- shots for everyone. With all the dancing and sweating and Italian food, I managed to keep myself in a relatively good place. But at the after party at Iron Horse, I had a beer, and that single beer tipped me over the edge into the Negative Zone.
The next day was spent largely immobile, because, again, I am no longer young and can no longer drink as the younger version of myself would. So the lawn didn't get mowed. Nor did it get mowed on Sunday because hangovers are now multi-day affairs of sadness and pain drenched in old age. Sort of like Ozzfest.
Nor did the lawn get mowed on Monday or Tuesday because I had to work late and couldn't get home before dark. So finally, yesterday, Wednesday, I got out of work in time to cut my god damn grass. I bicycle to and from the office, and when I got home my knees hurt. (Not young.) Still had to mow.
We have a push mower, partly because we enjoy futile gestures of green-life environmentalism, but mainly because we don't have a place to store a gas/electric mower. This push mower has a small basket for collecting grass clippings. Three weeks into its lifespan, the basket broke. I sort of fixed it, but the mesh sags on both sides and the clippings only stay sort-of contained. It's also pretty small, so you constantly have to empty it.
Now, Montgomery County has a rule where you can't just throw grass clippings into the trash. You have to buy these special big paper bags and put your grass clippings in those so when the garbage men come by, they can throw the grass clippings into the trash. These bags are about 3 1/2 feet tall when unfolded, and getting them open all the way is a pain. But I figured out yesterday that the best way to open them is to actually slide the bag down over your head and shoulders and open it from the inside. I did this, but it took me a minute or two as the sides kept folding in on themselves, so I was just standing in my front yard half-covered by a giant paper bag, banging it around from the inside. When I got the bag off, one of my neighbors was walking past with his dog. We both avoided eye contact.
So finally, despite a two-day hangover, late work days, bad knees, and stupid paper bags, I got the lawn mowed. I also got about seven new mosquito bites, because the hyper-aggressive Asian tiger mosquitoes that have overrun the DC area view DEET less as a deterrent than a seasoning.
Sweaty, itchy, and covered in grass clippings, I brought this lawn-mowing adventure full circle with a drink. Our raised-bed gardens have coughed up a wealth of cucumbers and we don't know what to do with them, so I sliced one thinly and put it in my gin and tonic, as prescribed by Saveur. They provided added refreshment and unmistakeable cucumberence. I recommend it, and I'm speaking here from experience and age.
My knees still hurt.