So there I was, putting the final touches on my riding lawn mower (did I ever mention that I have a riding lawn mower?) and getting ready for Deere Season. [Insert laugh track here]
My daughter was running around the lawn playing Oceanic Flight 817 making motor airplane blubbering noises followed by fake crashing sounds.
My 7-month old son was sitting in one of those circular play arenas hopping up and down. Up and down. Chomping on a chew toy. And drooling. Happy as a clam in saltwater.
My dog was spread out on the driveway worshipping Apollo, the sun god.
The sun was beating down. There was a warm wind coming in from the west. I surveyed my surroundings and inhaled the scent of the fresh Spring season.
"Ahhhhhhh. Smells like victory," I said to no one in particular.
After changing the oil, I hit the ignition on my riding lawn mower. Like an old 57 Chevy shaking off the cobwebs, she sputtered and spitted and failed to start. I hit the choke and she quickly coughed up a black cloud of oil before she finally roared to life.
The purring of the motor was music to my ears. I had reached the spirtual, rhythymic level of lawn-mower kharma.
I grabbed my daughter and took her for a spin around the front yard. That's when I noticed something peculiar out of the corner of my eye.
Old ladies in plaid shorts armed with hoes and rakes ripping menacing weeds out of their flower gardens and shrieking like Monica Seles returning a serve during the US Open.
Middle-aged men lumbering around the yard pushing and pulling their wheelbarrows from tree to tree and vanquishing branches with their over-size garden snips as if they were battling a three-headed dragon.
Little kids running around and shrieking like the Cloverfield monster ripping dandelions from the ground and popping off their little yellow heads.
They were the Titans of the Trees.
They were the Lords of the Lawn.
They were the Garden Gladiators, preparing to battle nature's forces with prunes, rakes and mounds and mounds of mulch.
As I sat there admiring the battle from afar.
I craned my neck around to survey my very own kingdom.
My jaw dropped in horror. A major coup d'etat was taking place before my very eyes.
Anarchist weeds. Protesting crabgrass. Defiant dandelions. Infiltrating my domain and attempting to overthrow my garden government.
The time for action was now.
I gassed up my push mower brandished my machete and, in my best Maximus impersonation, shouted at the insurgent weeds.
"Are you not entertained," I screamed at the top of my lungs. "Are you not entertained? Is this not why you are here?
I glanced over to my kids. I could see the pride in their eyes. They were anxiously awaiting my next orders.
My dog stood beside me, fangs bare with a crazed look in his eyes. He was whining, whimpering, growling and drooling like a hungry wolf ready to pounce on prey.
I looked at all three, held my sword high in the air and bellowed to the Gods.
"At my signal, unleash Hell."
With a swing of my blade, the lawn battle of 2008 had begun.