Mysteries of America: The Riding Mower…with Cup Holders

When the Boffin and I bought our first house, the Boffin’s family delivered some good-natured teasing in the form of “Next we are going to see pictures of the Boffin on his riding lawn mower!”.  We would have found this amazing considering we lived in the Boston metro area at the time.  I would say being able to afford anything that warranted a riding mower was as likely as the Red Sox winning the Series, but they won at that point.  So, now that I live in the Chicago area, it was as likely as the Cubs winning the Series.

By Charles & Hudson (Flickr: Husqvarna Product Tour) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
By Charles & Hudson (Flickr: Husqvarna Product Tour) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)%5D, via Wikimedia Commons
Yes, I had to get that dig in there.

The truth is the riding mower is not about laziness. I won’t lie. We have our share of lazy people in the country, and some of them do own riding mowers. But our laziness as adults with our lawns usually manifests itself in other ways. Of course, people do not necessarily outsource their lawn mowing because of laziness either. Let’s not forget the inability to take care of our lawns for whatever reasons we may have, i.e. physical disabilities, time crunches, etc. So here are our standard labor saving ways of taking care of the grass.

1) Lawn services: Whether we belong to a housing association or pay a private company, we have somebody come along every week to take care of cutting and trimming our lawn and spraying down those chemicals to keep those dandelions away. And we cross fingers that the petunias survive to see another week.

2) Our kids: Lawn mowing is classic household chore to pass down to the children. Just ask my Older Brother #1. I am sure Older Brother #2 would have gotten the task too, if he didn’t have autism and mental delays. In my time, I certainly used the mower too. It builds character.

Anna in Wisconsin gets the benefits of child labor. https://www.flickr.com/photos/bcmom/142488088
Anna in Wisconsin gets the benefits of child labor with the photo titled, “One of the benefits of having a teenage son”.  https://www.flickr.com/photos/bcmom/142488088

3) Other people’s kids: This is the route the Boffin and I are going. Our friend’s son is earning a few bucks a week to take care of our yard with the classic gas-powered push mower…that he hates. He will build a few more lessons in patience as he works toward becoming an Eagle Scout.

In most of the built-up suburban areas, most of the yards are about 1/4 to 1/2 acre of land, so a push mower does the trick, and that is what most people buy.  So why the riding mower? Not everyone lives in the built-up suburban areas.  It was designed for some of the big ass yards that we have over here. Several acres is not uncommon.

And our summers aren’t like English summers. If the weather is calling for about 38°C (That’s about 100°F.) and 100% humidity, that riding mower with cold drink in the cup holder will be a saving grace between heat stroke and you.  August in Louisiana.  Enough said.

Actually, I have one more thing to add. Because the mowers have wheels and a motor, in the USA, we have to race them. There is no other option. What I love about this video is the comments section. There are people actually suggesting that they used the wrong makes and models. There are riding mower afficianados here, folks.

We are a land of contradictions. The United States may have its deep problems, but we know how to have fun.

Update

The Boffin’s uncle kindly let us know about the British Lawn Mower Racing Association which has been around for quite some time. It’s nice to see our friends across the Atlantic get in on the action too.

http://www.blmra.co.uk/

Naturally, I had to find out if there were a United States Lawn Mower Racing Association as well. I am happy to report that there is. However, they soup up the mowers and race on dirt tracks.

http://www.letsmow.com/

I should have guessed that mower racing would have been organized in some way.

3 thoughts on “Mysteries of America: The Riding Mower…with Cup Holders

  1. There we have it, Karen. When I lived in a big house on a big plot in my past life, I had a rider, no cup holder, no racing. Now with the Little Bitty, I am quite happy to push my little gas model for 20 minutes to a half hour and call it done. FYI, have you heard of the snowmobile racing across water? No kidding. I saw it online.

    Liked by 1 person

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