I started thinking a lot about
the result of a bizarre
sequence of events.
Well, maybe not bizarre.
a sequence of events.
I just kinda started thinking about scones.
But I know how things seem a lot more promising,
more "Boy I Can't Wait to Hear What's Coming Next"
When the story starts with
If I’ve already disappointed you.
The truth is,
I was mowing.
On a riding lawnmower.
On a riding lawnmower that has so many
that in order to start it,
I have to call The Chief,
more than once.
Me: Hey Chief! It's me!
I just wanted to ask you one little question.
The Chief: Sure. Ask away.
Me: "I'm getting ready to mow.
So, OK, I have the hood Thingie up,
I remember that I have to turn the fuel hose valve Dealie parallel to the little hose,
But do I leave the little wire Dumaflitchy on the right connected or disconnected when I start it?”
The Chief: “It has to be connected when you start it, but before you can put it in gear you have to disconnect the wires. Don’t you remember Lu, that’s the whole problem we have with it, the (some very technical verbage…) is broken.
Me: “Oh, OK, yeah, right."
Anyway, OK, I start it with the wires connected and then disconnect them before I go?"
The Chief: “Yes dear, that’s what I said.”
(He knows I hate it when he calls me dear.)
Me: “OK, But the clutch seems to be stuck down on the floor.
What the heck is that all about?”
Maybe it's broken too.
Here's an idea.
Why don't I just go up to the Western Auto and buy a new one? "
The Chief: "A new clutch?"
Me: " No. Not a new clutch.
I don't really have the time to install a new clutch.
A new lawnmower, Chief.
One that works.
And has air conditioning."
The Chief: "Lu, now focus. Check to see if the clutch lock is engaged, and if so, disengage it.”
Me: “OK, that’s that bar Thingie down there kind of between my feet, right?”
The Chief: “I'm not sure what you mean by bar thingie. It’s down between your feet on the floor and has the word Clutch and a picture of an open and closed lock beside it. It’s pretty self explanatory, dear.
Me: “OK, I’m moving this bar Thingie up and down, but it doesn’t do anything to the clutch at all- obviously this is broken.
I mean it would just be so much easier,
don't you think Chief,
for me to just run up and buy a new one."
The Chief: “Lu, if you are moving it from the locked position to the unlocked position, it should clearly release the clutch. And I’m not sure why you keep calling it a bar- it’s more like a small switch AND IT HAS PICTURES OF THE LOCK AND ABSOLUTELY, POSITIVELY COULD NOT BE ANY EASIER TO FIGURE OUT…. dear.”
“Unless… Lu, you ARE moving something down on the floor right, not the big huge bar directly below the seat that is CLEARLY labeled “Blade Height” right??”
Me: “Well... it’s possible that I may have been moving the big huge bar that is clearly labeled “Blade Height.”
The Chief: “Put the Blade Height bar back in the position it was in before you started messing with it.”
First, I wasn't "messing with it"
“How on earth would I remember what position it started in when I
thought it was the clutch lock,
and was just trying to unlock it??
The Chief: "Just put it some position, Lu. Just choose one. Any position."
Me: OK, and now I see the little clutch lock Hooie-Hoo – OK, I can figure that out.
The Chief: Good. I’m glad. Anything else?
Me: OK, wait, I have to have the mower blade up to start it right? –
When do I put the blade down?"
The Chief: “Well, if I were you I would put it down when I wanted to actually start MOWING something. Otherwise, you’ll just be riding around for hours accomplishing absolutely nothing, dear.”
Me: “OK, so I have the fuel Thingie turned,
I have the wires connected,
I have the clutch ready,
but the hood is still up.
When do I put it down?”
The Chief: “Can you see at ALL with the hood up, Lu?” “Could you in ANY WAY move forward with the hood up?
Put the hood down, when you're ready to go.
So you can see.”
Me: "OK, I think I have it all figured out, Thanks Chief."
The Chief: "OK, be careful."
after about 20 minutes of
by trial and error
to remember even the first thing
we had just talked about,
I got it running.
And I made exactly two passes back and forth across the front yard of the farmhouse
Ran out of gas.
Me: "Hey, it’s me again."
The Chief: “Who is this?”
(To The Chief’s extremely logical, engineering-type mind it would be virtually impossible for anyone to CONCEIVABLY need any more explanation on starting a mower.)
I identify myself again.
Me: It's me,Lu.
We just talked.
I ran out of gas.
Is the gas in the storeroom in the red can with the yellow Tubie Thingie on the end the right gas?’
The Chief: “It should be the right gas. But make absolutely sure that it’s not diesel.”
Me: “How on earth would I know if it was diesel or not?”
The Chief: “Smell it.” “Does it smell like diesel?”
Me: “How on earth would I know what diesel smells like?
I don't usually smell diesel.
Doesn’t diesel just smell like gas?
This smells like gas.
I just spilled a bunch of it on my leg and it ran down in my shoe.
It definitely smells like gas.
My shoe now smells exactly like gas."
The Chief: “Just put it in the mower, dear. Hopefully it’s not diesel.”
Me: “OK, I’ll put it in,
But Hey Chief,
I just hope I can remember how to start this thing up again."
The Chief: “I hope so too, Lu. I really hope so too.”
Me: OK, well if I have a problem, I'll call.
The Chief: I'm pretty sure I have a big meeting in just...
Yep, sorry it starts in just a minute...
Me: OK Chief, well thanks!
And that’s kind of how I started thinking about scones.
I mean, it's a struggle trying to walk someone through such technical stuff.
Don't you agree?
My mind needed
a safe place to rest.
I’m going to go make some right now.
I’ll share the recipe and pictures tomorrow.
I think you're gonna be really glad I mowed...
Just like The Chief.