June 27, 2008

Lawns And The Men Who Love Them

I am more than ever convinced that the quest for the almighty perfect lawn is predominantly a male domain. Oh, I'm sure there are many females as enamored of their nice blue-green, totally-weed-free, chemically-saturated lawns. But after inculcating myself into the chemical-laden vortex of Lawndom at a major [Scotts] lawn [Scotts] chemical [Scotts] forum, I was astounded at the inordinate number of males extolling the virtues of chemically-enhanced lawns and slavishly avowing their whore-ish devotion to their chemical pimps [Scotts]. ("They poison me, man, but I know they really love me"). I'm certain that if physically possible, they would gladly have sexual relations with their sod, which might explain some of those 'gopher holes' one often sees in even in their perfect, synthetically-enhanced lawns. Hmmmm? Could be those stains in the front yard really aren't from the dog?

As high school boys compare genitalia or boorishly boast falsehoods of conquered girls, so too does that verbose, chest thumping accompany many into adulthood where comparisons of lawns and boorish boasting of weedless, bugless, and (thanks to chemicals) - lifeless - lawns still persists. After all, what respectable earthworm could live with all that accumulated salt from four-times-a-year Scotts weed, feed & bleed toxic concoctions?

The fact is that size never really matters since it's not how big your lawn, but what you do with it. That huge, perfect grass carpet, if attained with synthetic fertilizers, chemical herbicides and pesticides, is not as impressive as that slightly-dandelion-dotted, naturally-green hued grass maintained by nothing more than conscientious mowing, irrigation left to Mother Nature, compost additions or twice-yearly applications of corn gluten meal for weed control and a healthy green color. Any person - male or female - who would skew their priorities so drastically by putting the health and safety of their family and pets at risk for the sole sake of their gazillion little grass plants, is in a word: A dope. Well. Two words.

To suggest, however, that these lawn jockeys consider alternative lawn care practices, or God forbid ratchet back their instant gratification-perfectionist expectations, is tantamount to spiting on the American flag. (An analogy to which they allude quite often as in: "It's American to want a perfect lawn!") In this day and age of all manner of horrors, exploitations and terrorism, I can think of a great many other things that a true American might want, And a perfect lawn isn't one of them. Or at least, it shouldn't be.

'Talk to the hand' is an attitude I've encountered before. It's hard to penetrate a wall of thick,synthetic-mindsets. Even amongst organic gardeners, there are stoic differences of opinion and approach. But most are at least willing to listen or read or research. Why, we even occasionally delve into the dens of ChemicalLand and keep our compost-tinged ears open to chemical drivel from Scotts or Monsanto junkies if for no other reason than to remain updated on The Darkside. It helps enable a cogent, viable argument if you know what "the other side" is thinking when some macho lawn dude pontificates his chemical mantra.

Perfection is in the eye of the beholder; as are priorities, and 'means' do not always justify the end. Sadly, even if the ability to comprehend alternatives is there amongst the Scott's groupies, the willingness to even consider such alternatives was long ago eradicated by copious applications of RoundUp**.

**RoundUp: A non-selective herbicide apparently capable of wiping out brain cells and common sense as well as weeds and several other once functioning, living organisms.**