Man Journal Short Cuts
I'm not sure what physiological characteristic of pre-historic Bonobos makes me feel like less of a man for having a lawn with long grass, but once it grows past a certain length it's a hard one to ignore. Sydney, with it's warm, wet spring means our lawn grows rapidly and, as mentioned earlier, uneconomically when it comes to having a gardener maintain it.
Last weekend the lawn had reached that height again, and I decided that this time instead of pulling out my wallet I would pull out my penis and man up instead. I drove to Bunnings, put my penis away again, took out my wallet again, and then I bought my first ever lawn mower.
This was not only my first lawn mower, but my first attempt at mowing a lawn. And also the first time I've felt solely responsible for the state of a petrol engine.
When I was speaking to the staff at Bunnings about what I needed to buy beyond a lawn mower in order to make it run he said I could buy petrol from a petrol station and that I should buy a starter pack with oil. First, however, he mentioned that I should remember to buy the oil removal next time I was in, "because you need to change the oil every year, just like a car." And then he paused and stared at me to make sure the expression on my face indicated I understood this very simple concept. Which I didn't, but I recognised the conversation checkpoint and I faked a nod. Then I considered whether or not I should just take my lawnmower with me to the mechanic when I take my car there each year.
On Sunday morning the sky was clear and the air was warm. I set about assembling my lawn mower, then I filled it with petrol and then I started it. When the engine kicked into life I felt so manly. Seriously, I thought to myself "I feel so fucking manly right now, I can't wait to write about this in my diary."
Then, I started mowing and suddenly it became very obvious why the gardener would become upset with me every time I made him wait until the grass was super long before he mowed. It was not the same as having a haircut when your hair is long. You need to empty a grass catcher into a bin. A lot. It took me about two hours. I did not receive $100. I need to mow the lawn at least four more times to make this investment into a lawnmower worth more than the cost of having the gardener in each time. I will probably do it every weekend.
Once the last blade was shortened and the sound of the engine was quietened for the final time I was sweaty, yet satisfied. At the start of the day my masculinity was questioned and my grass was overgrown. Now it was my pubic hairs who had assumed that description.
Later on Sunday evening I built my new PC with the parts I bought to replace my old PC. It was not as manly as mowing but everything worked and for the first time in two months I have a PC again (and there is journal jinx potential here, so I am calling it out now so that it doesn't happen. Good.)
Doing both manly things and nerdy things on the same day made me feel like a sensitive, new age guy. And I tried to make a joke where instead of "having my swag on" I "had my snag on", but it sounded like I'd messed up eating a sandwich at a BBQ so I edited that out.