During my lifetime the month of January has been kind of ugly here in the heartland of America. People will un-decorate their Christmas trees and drag them stump first through the front door, turn right, and then about half way to the truck give up and drop the tree right there in the side yard. It's there to stay. Now add to that dehydrated relic the lights on the house that have begun to sag because of the large icicles that they now must support and add to those, the string of outdoor lights that are still out there somewhere under the snow. The very string of lights that set that boxwood on fire last week. This scenario has been playing out for years but is now being upstaged.
As of late, mankind has made big improvements in Christmas by way of inflatable decorations. These are brightly colored, have lights inside of them, a blower motor, and some even have small pieces of Styrofoam circulating inside supposedly to look like a blizzard. And there can't be anything more heart warming than a giant snowman listing 22 degrees to starboard. Also nothing says Christmas to me like Santa's reindeer pulling a deflated Santa and his sleigh.
Don't get me wrong, I like beach balls. But as Christmas decorations they don't cut it out here on the farm. The biggest problem is that now, in the month of January all of the extension cords have been swiped to plug in the diesel pick-ups leaving the yards to look like poorly managed landfills half buried in 4 inches of fresh snow. And then there's the wind to contend with. The biggest problem out here on the Missouri River bottom is our visibility. Okay, it's not the visibility. It's the fact that our view is unobstructed. By trees. There is nothing to stop the wind unless a coyote pokes his head up out of his den. I don't care how well you anchor a Christmas inflatable, it won't survive. What started out as a meaningful manger scene complete with Peanuts characters, soon resembles a Christmas painting by an impressionist. "What the heck is that supposed to be?"
And who's going to put all of this away? I think it's awful the way our friends and neighbors fail to keep their yards picked up. Besides that, I have news for them, next summer, mowing into these Christmas beach balls or extension cords overgrown by 6 inch long grass will almost always trip a breaker on the electrical panel. And hitting grilling tools like brass brushes and long handled spatulas, or even lawn sprinklers will only serve to dull your lawnmower. And the mower could throw an object at the house and damage the new siding.
Not that I would know.
I always pick things up.