It might not be the wisest move, but I have opened the windows. The weather channel says that it is 50 degrees, the house needs airing out, and anyway my cats told me to do it.
When I woke up this morning there was a bright red cardinal nosing around the base of the birdfeeder. I have been slack-ass on the birdfeeding front this spring. But I had noticed a left over suet cake on the porch the other day, so I popped that in its little cage for the little bugger, and he has stopped giving me his glassy little stare of meanness.
The new weekend-warrior neighbors are rake-rake-raking away, I can hear them now through the open window next to my desk. scrape scrape scrape. What is it with some people and their primal urge to rake? It’s the outdoor equivalent of scrubbing down the counters, I guess. I dunno, I figure, it’s the outdoors, let the pine needles fall where they may.
When I was a kid, spending forced weekends here at this very house with my newly divorced Dad, I used to resent the fact that he didn’t have a grassy lawn — just a front yard filled with pine needles. He also didn’t have a goddamn TV back then, the wackjob, he mostly just liked to sit out in the driveway in his Gran Torino, listening to A Prairie Home Companion before anyone else thought it was a groovy, ironic older hipster thing to do. Back then, it was just unbelievably dorky.
So, lacking a TV, or even a lawn, my brothers and I would play football in the street. Somewhere around here I have a picture of us, me, in a skirt, pigtails, and cowboy boots, hiking the ball to my brother Steve. That cute kid from next door was there, too. Jeremiah Beach.
He was one very redeeming factor about our weekends here. Cute as a button, and didn’t go to our school, so we had this kind of clean slate with each other. I strongly suspect that he was a bit of an outcast himself, what with his whole I live with my weird grandfather who never leaves the house vibe. But he also had a bright red football helmet, and so did my brother Sean, so we were all good with each other.
How weird is it that now I live here, I am tight with my Dad, and I am pro-pine needle lawn. No Gran Torinos, though. That’s just a plain old death trap.