Have you ever heard stories of how old people don't want younger kids around? They usually include the phrase, 'Get Off My Lawn' for people like that. Some of the reference came from various sources (see Wikipedia's "you kids get off my lawn") including Clint Eastwood in the movie 'Gran Torino.' This is what I envision someone doing when saying that: Clint Eastwood's Character.
So the other day, I went outside to mow. For those of you who know me, you know I have bone spurs on the top of my foot, that's very painful. Walking is nasty, even with special shoes or wearing a special orthopedic boot. Thus, I was so happy to know that the riding mower had been fixed (it wouldn't start) and I could ride the job and listen to my MP3 player. It was my one moment that I could be alone and just sing without anyone hearing me (over the sound of the mower). I went outside to start the 'riding paper weight' (as I've been referring to it as of late) and it wouldn't start. Again. I tried and tried and tried...but nothing. So I called the people who just fixed it and returned it last week. Uh...they'll have to look at it. Duh.
I went back into the garage and stared at my nemesis...the walking mower. My foot hurt just looking at the big hunk of metal with wheels. I summoned up painful courage and got to work, mowing the yard.
While I was mowing the side yard, I watched a neighbor with a ton of kids, instruct their two YOUNGEST children on how to ride bike across the street. But they didn't tell the kids to watch for cars. One of the kids even had training wheels. The mom told the kids to ride back and forth between our house and the house across the street, riding on our driveway...and don't look for cars, I swear.
Needless to say, I wasn't a bit amused. The family never talks to us unless they want something. They never asked to ride on our driveway. If one of the kids fell, I'm sure we'd be sued, even though we didn't give permission.
What did the mom do? She went back inside and left these two YOUNG children to ride across a fairly busy street, back and forth, from driveway to driveway. What did I do? I kept an eye on them, like a REAL mother would. I was ready to run up to them and tell them to watch for cars, but then thought, I'd be that mom who said 'get off my lawn' if I did. I'd be the bad guy. So I mowed and watched. There were a few close calls, but the kids were fine. However, when I had to mow the other side of the yard across the driveway, I went up close to the driveway, and waited for the kids to move so I wouldn't hit them with the mower. The older girl (she was about five, maybe?) saw me, went across the street, told her younger brother, and they went home.
I became the lady who said, 'Get Off My Lawn' without saying a word.
When did I become the mean old lady in the neighborhood? When did people become afraid of me just because of a stare?
I don't know. But the worst part is...I think I like it.
Have a great week!