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SPRINGING INTO ACTION
by Mike Blakesley
Originally published April 3, 1989
As always happens around this time of
year, Spring has occurred. Spring is when all the trees and plants
and car washes burst into life again, and when federal law mandates
that you must pay your taxes and "spring clean" your
house and garden.
I've got the taxes taken care of. Now it's time for the really
big task: Digging my house out from under the ravages of winter.
As usual, I've made a handy list of all the things I need to
* Rent a power rake (and a kid to operate it) to remove four
tons of accumulated dead grass from my lawn.
* Untangle the garden hose (which has been snaking across the
lawn all winter and is buried under the dead grass) from the
* Peel the bathmat off the bathroom floor; stomp on any spiders
* Remove the Emergency Winter Survival Kit (consisting of ice
scraper, snow brush, starting fluid, candles, sand, and mildewed
candy bars) from the trunk of the car and replace with the Emergency
Summer Survival Kit (a tube of suntan lotion and mildewed candy
* Wash the car. Doing this will usually bring on a sudden snow
storm, after which spring cleaning can be put off until it melts.
* Using a ladder, retrieve the porch rug from the trees in the
neighbor's yard, where it blew during the winter.
* Carry 200 pounds of back issues of "The Billings Gazette"
to the trash.
* Figure out how to rearrange the living room furniture. I don't
know why people always do this in the springtime, but I understand
it's required by law.
* Buy a new one-year supply of "Pledge" (1 can) and
dust the furniture, while contemplating the age-old question:
Is it better to dust first, thereby allowing the excess dust
to fall on the floor where it can be vacuumed up; or is it more
intelligent to vacuum first, hoping the dust stirred up by vacuuming
won't fall on the furniture, where it will then fall on the floor
when the furniture is dusted? Thinking about this question has
enabled me to put off dusting and vacuuming for weeks at a time.