I base this on the enactment of the sacred yearly ritual observed by my neighbors, whom we will call the Mumbles. Mr. Mumble has been hard at work on this compelling annual task all morning. First of all he rakes the roots of his still brown grass almost down to the bedrock, then he picks up by hand what would have become his lawn and bags it. Out comes the mower, set to the lowest shave setting, although I truly believe he has tinkered with the thing to get it even lower than manufacturers lowest settings. Next comes another all encompassing raking and hand bagging, followed by another mowing. His…what should I call it now?…bare roots are now at least three inches below my emerging grass, just beginning to green up. He, Mr. Mumble, is now stood with Mrs. Mumble, admiring this new desert of brown dirt, he is his lumberjack shirt and yellow peaked cap, carefully chosen to look for all the world like a laborer’s hard hat, (I had to do a double-take), and she in her Daisy Dukes and crop top. I did mention this is a retired couple, no? I try not to look at her fashion choices in the warmer months as I do not want them indelibly blazed into my retinas.
In about two weeks, the first panic will begin to set in when we dethatch our grass and give it the first lite, high trim. Their brown desert will not have altered in any way whatsoever. They might as well be living in Arizona without an underground irrigation system. This will result in more of their rakings and mowings of what is rapidly becoming a hard, mud patch. Rinse and repeat all summer with occasional sprinklings of lawn fertilizer to no avail.
No, we don’t say anything to them from the comfort of our lush greenness, for that would be discourteous and imply they were incapable of observation. Besides, our other retired neighbor, whom we shall call ‘Mr. Bighead’ is full of good advice he likes to impart to others when he isn’t intent on impressing them with his material possessions. Aside from that, the Mumble’s grass has become a local attraction with people coming from far and wide to observe this peculiar phenomenon. It would be unsporting to spoil the fun.