By G. E. Shuman
Early in the summer my dear wife, who seems to enjoy filling my need for a new toy occasionally, bought me a leaf blower. Mine is not an over the top, gas-powered, blow the lawn furniture away blower; it’s a nice, fairly quiet, lightweight, rechargeable machine.
For years I’ve seen other guys around the neighborhood using leaf blowers but have never been interested in having one. I always considered them to be just another gimmicky waste of money that probably worked about half as well as claimed. I mean, how could you go up against a Vermont wind with any device you could carry around? Boy, was I wrong!
Truthfully, I have loved the little thing from the first time I tried it. Though electric, it is really very powerful, and I guess I need to get used to the idea that electric cars, airplanes, dump trucks, and school buses all work as well with a stream of electrons as their power source as they once did only with a stream of gasoline. That’s all okay with me, as long as my first electric car performs as well as my new toy does.
No joke, (Okay, maybe a little joke.) I think the claimed 130 mph wind force this tool produces could easily blow the fleas right off your dog’s back and onto the neighbor’s cat at twenty paces, if you could separate your dog from the neighbor’s cat by twenty paces.
I haven’t yet had the opportunity to blow many actual leaves with my new leaf blower. I have, several times, blown all the dirt off our long front porch floor and stripped every grain of sand, broken twig, blade of grass, and peanut shell, (Yes, I feed peanuts to the squirrels.) from under our carport. It’s very satisfying to me, to get these things done without a broom, shovel, rake, or backache being involved.
One time recently, (Please don’t tell my wife.) I actually opened the kitchen door and blew all the sand from the tile floor back out onto the driveway, where it belongs. (No one ever called me stupid. Okay, well, maybe a few people have.)
So far, as said, I have blown away few leaves, but can hardly wait to do so. If the leaves don’t fall soon, I might just point the blower up at our trees and hurry them along a bit. I’ve been thinking that if all leaf blower enthusiasts in Vermont (Okay, a better word might be owners. I’m probably the only enthusiast.) did the same, perhaps we’d hurry the season along a bit too, and end up with an early spring. No, huh?
Still, that does give me another idea. Don’t be surprised if you drive by my house some dark night this winter and see me out in the driveway, leaf blower raised high, coaxing the gently falling snow over onto the neighbor’s cat.