Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Tension Builds on July 21, 1905

Kind reader, have you ever lolled and lazed around in bed on a summer's morn, enjoying the breeze from the window and the silenced alarm clock and the chance to doze for another hour? Then--suddenly--your neighbor's lawnmower roars into life for an early-morning mowing/torture session. You try a pillow over the head (too hot), closing the window (too stifling), or just ignoring it (too distracting). Ahh, what's the use...muttering something or other, you get up to start the old percolator. Dangit!

Friend, you're not alone. You have a brother in 1905 Ypsilanti. Same problem. Read for yourself:

"'I have a theory,' said an irate citizen to the reporter recently, 'that there should be an island way out at sea about 3,000 miles from nowhere, for those persons who want to get up at 3 or 4 a.m. and mow their lawns and perform other noisy and disagreeable household duties. They ought to be made to stay there too, all of them, and tolerate the noise the other fellow makes when they want to sleep,' he added viciously.

"'The gist of the matter is that in my neighborhood it is getting simply unbearable. Yesterday morning I was wakened about 4 o'clock by my neighbor on one side mowing his lawn. This morning at 4:30 the man on the other side got the fever, caught it from the other fellow I suppose, and maybe thought he'd pay him back.'

"'Neither one of those men have anything to do during the day, and it is beyond me why they want to get at it so early. About the time other people in the neighborhood want to get up they are ready to sit down and take a snooze or rest up for awhile.'

"The reporter listened with patience and admitted that there was some justice in the complaint."

Yessiree, there's nothing as raucous, loud, and obstreperous as...a push reel mower.


Lisele said...

Well, I endorse the island idea. Now it's not just lawn mowers but also leaf blowers, chain saws, powered lawn edgers -- it's insane!!! I believe in human-powered tools which are a lot quieter (although, with the advent of the Segway, even walking is no longer human-powered). Neighbor, ever heard of the reel mower, the rake, the spade???

DD said...

I just passed a gentleman using a powered edger on the way home. C'mon, now, that's a bit silly! I agree, human-powered tools, especially for small city lots, are perfectly adequate. Plus on our street we have about 40 little houses with 40 separate lawn mowers instead of a "Bagley Street shed" where you can go to rent a communal one once a week. (one neighbor has not one but three lawn TRACTORS, which is just ludicrous to me--we're talking 1/10 acre). To each their own, but the point of objection is that all the noise impacts other folks. At any rate.