Forced Labor In Times Of Sociable Distance

My old company definitely keeps up-to-date on its color names.

It’s the last day of April and it sure is a beauty. Sunny, mid-sixties, minimal wind — so far, the best day of the year, weather-wise. Oh man, I am in for one heck of an awesome bike ride.

[At this point, please try to imagine the classic sound of a cartridge needle sliding across the grooves of a record album.]

I announced to The Feeshko, “I’m heading out for my bike ride.”

The Feeshko said, “You have some long overdue yardwork to do.”

“I’ll do it tomorrow,” said I, quite cleverly.

“You’ve been saying that for weeks,” she reminded me, quite correctly.

“But I MEAN it this time,” I responded, quite sheepishly.

“No, we’ve got to get the leaves in the yard raked,” The Feeshko retorted, quite insistently. “You can go for a bike ride afterward,” she added, sympathetically.

“Yeah, but I’ll be too worn out by that time,” I pleaded, futilely.

Try to guess who won that little dispute.

You know, it just didn’t seem fair that I should be FORCED to work when so many people are currently unable to work during these times of sociable distancing. As I raked up bag after bag after bag of leaves, I felt like I should be standing in support of my non-working brothers and sisters, and I lamented my poor logic with that argument. I raked, I sweated, I pouted, I sighed, I moped, I acted bored — all to no avail.

All I could do was lower my head and say, “Yes, bossman.”

After more than two hours of raking and leaf bagging, The Feeshko asked me to run an errand for her. She needed eggs, and she was fully aware that the only way she was going to get them from me was if I was allowed to ride my bike to the grocery store. A Win-Win situation if there ever was one.

“Please bring me a dozen free-range brown eggs please.”

Don’t believe for a second that I went straight home after that. Sure, I was tired after all that raking, but I still managed to ride around for an hour while imagining myself stopping at a number of other businesses and giving the workers something to do in the form of providing curbside pick up.

“I’m outside on your curb right now. Could you please deliver 16 drywall screws, a table saw, and a new rake? Thank you.”

“I’ll have three martinis and two manhattans please. I’ll be there in ten seconds.”

“I see you have curbside pickup. Please bring me a pound of organic, humane, fair-trade, medium-roast, Guatemalan coffee beans. I appreciate it.”

“I’d like to order one gallon of flat latex paint in the color “Sociable” and one gallon of semi-gloss in the color “Distance.” Could you throw it out the door as I ride by? Thank you.”

They missed my drive-by. Oh well.

Okay, most of the previous pictures were fake news. But I swear, the next picture is actual photographic evidence of a true curbside pickup.

Get it? The cops are actually PICKING UP the perp who is sitting on the CURB just to the left of that street lamp.

Sorry about that joke. Well, I guess I better get back to the chain gang.

Hi. My name is Greg and I ride my bike a lot. That is to say, I ride my bike almost every day. I go on long rides and short rides. Sunny rides, cloudy rides, and rainy rides. I like commuting, errand-running, day-tripping, overnighting, and touring on my bike. I ride on city streets, highways, gravel, single track, and snow with equal enthusiasm. Sometimes I ride fast and sometimes I ride slow. I try to keep my feet on the pedals at stop lights and I do not dismount when I hop up on a curb. I have a roadie bike, a mountain bike and a touring bike. I try to accept any challenge a bike ride can throw at me without complaint. But I don't like bugs.

7 response to "Forced Labor In Times Of Sociable Distance"

  1. By: Scooter Posted: April 30, 2020

    Tough luck, but it’s your own fault. I thought you hated view blockers! Change that table saw order to a chain saw, and cut ‘em off at the trunk. Problem solved!

    • By: gregblood Posted: April 30, 2020

      LOL! It’s true I hate the view-blocking aspect of trees, but the leaf-raking is even worse.

    • By: Lednar De Nalloh Posted: April 30, 2020

      Hey, Scooter don’t give him ideas, I thought you liked trees

  2. By: The Navigator Posted: May 1, 2020

    So if you like warm colours.. it’s sociable. If you like ‘cool’ colours, it’s distance! Lol. And you know, autumn leaves are like so last season!

    My dad tells a great story of one late November postponing raking up the last of the leaves for the season (they had a tulip, maple, oak and mtn ash in the backyard in IN). One day was really unseasonably warm with a cold snap to follow, so instead of raking leaves as planned, he drove a couple hours away to a state park to go hiking. Well, there were very strong winds ahead of the cold front, and the front came in early. By the time he got home, he got out of his truck and went around to the backyard to find… voila! All the leaves were gone! No raking! The strong winds had blown them all away (their backyard wasn’t fenced) to become someone else’s problem! He still laughs about that one and says was definitely the best decision he could have made that day 🙂

    • By: gregblood Posted: May 1, 2020

      That’s a good story and I’m glad it had a happy ending for your dad.

      My leaves often get blown into the neighbor’s yards too. Unfortunately, my neighbors on the other side have trees too so their leaves blow into my yard. The leaves just shift from yard to yard. In fact, my immaculately-raked lawn of yesterday already has leaves on it today. My back yard is fenced so those leaves are all mine.

      By the way, I do rake in the fall too, but there are lots of leaves that hang on until after snow arrives. Those are the ones I had to rake yesterday since I don’t rake leaves off the snow.

  3. By: Tony Cullimore Posted: May 3, 2020

    Guatemalan coffee beans – great choice! I haven’t been able to get them (green) from my Melbourne supplier for a while but last time I was ordering beans – there they were. I have roasted a bag but it isn’t ready to drink yet – maybe by the end of the week.

    We decided to Autumn Clean the house during this period of otherwise lounging about the house. It’s going slowly as planned but every now and again Mrs C wants to tackle the next job just as I want to go for a ride. I know how you feel!!

    • By: gregblood Posted: May 4, 2020

      You roast your own beans? Impressive. You really are a Coffeenneur . . . or should I say, Coffeenerd?

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