Saturday, June 18, 2011


Condo life means putting up with a lot of... "say."  "Say" is a passive-aggressive form of "hand."  Here's a prime example.

In recent years here at Del Boca Vista, there has been a militant interest in the condition of our grass.  And individual condo yard here is about 20 fit square.  My bedroom might be bigger.  If you live on a corner, the line between your grass and our grass starts to get murky, but it is all their grass in the end.  And They are deathly afraid of brown spots.

It all started a couple of springs ago when the gas tanks were replaced in the backyards, which was a Big Dig of its own kind (and I believe when the mice proved in, thank you very much).  Lawns were relaid and reseeded and we were asked to please water. 

Watering one's 20 sq ft lawn is a tedious process that exposes you to the neighbors and everything that's wrong with the outside of the house you never look at -- starting with learning that the outside faucet leaks.  I am working on a way of turning it off and on from inside at the moment.  That's today's big accomplishment.  And if I replace the screen door at the same time, well get a load o' me.

Of course we didn't water.  All over Central Mass are towns enforcing water bans through systems that fall just short of Shirley Jackson's lottery, but we are watering our brains out.  "One of the best times to water is when it's raining!" says the newsletter.  Because we sit on 65 billions gallons of free water, we should use it up 20 sq ft at a time.

Things to yak about in Massachusetts include the outrageous "wat-a" rates and whether you are on town or soo-a, reservoir or MRWA.  Bore yourself over it here.  It's lower than "how did you get here" and "how bout them {sports team]," but it will come up at the cookout.  Clinton sold its soul (and a whole lotta land) in 1897 in exchange for not paying the water bill.  So yes they can force us to do it.

The Grassatpo was born.  Like most para-military organizations, it began reaching out to the neighbors who were annoying and disliked to start with, and gave them a little power -- in this case the power to scold and bully us about whether we were watering often enough, long enough, with enough patriotic zeal.

This season, the band formalized, with a title, a structure, and I expect before long fluorescent vests.

So at this hour I should already be out there, bed-head and all, sprinkling a lush green lawn that the officers of our village feel is living proof this work is necessary.

Keep Calm and Carry On.


  1. Once I visited my father in a retirement community in Florida that has a HOA. They gave him a 20 dollar ticket because I parked in the wrong place.

  2. I think you should mow and weed vigorously and then used all the cuttings to design a beautiful wreath in the shape of a peace sign. :-)

  3. My philosophy has always been that if Mother Nature wanted me to have grass/flowers, she would take care of it. I cannot remember the last time I actually watered it and it is still quite green and growing. When I first moved into this house, mowing the yard consisted of cutting weeds and stirring up dust. At least now, some 30+ years later, at least there is grass to mow - even if I have someone else to do it. Of course, the empty house next door has been a problem and finally someone is at least cutting the grass. Guess the city ordinance threat of fines if over 14" tall got someone's attention. M

  4. Mother Nature also provides sprinklers and timers. Set it and forget it! For 20 square feet more or less, that would be easy peasy!


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