Against Kandis' wishes, I purchased a $100 reel mower, instead of a gas mower. Despite the fact that it has some trouble cutting weeds (they should be pulled anyway, not just cut), it works beautifully. My neighbors think I'm a little strange, and I was a bit embarrassed the first time I went out and started using it, but I've gotten over that. It's convenient, and, aside from regular blade sharpening, it requires less maintenance than a power mower. No paying for gas, either!
I like to think of myself as a caring person, and attempt to behave compassionately towards others. Sometimes I fall short in that effort, but failing is what humans do, and successful humans learn from failure. I'd like to discuss what I believe is one of my more recent failures, and what I've come to learn about what's behind it. When the masking guidance and mandates first dropped, it short-circuited me. I reacted in disbelief, anger, and refusal to enter places that required masks. Masking was a simple act that was both scientifically and morally justified. I wondered if I really was a decent person, or if this reflexive pushback was just uncovering undiagnosed sociopathic tendencies. I started to wonder if my outward behaviors of positivity and kindness were just facades that I'd constructed around a dark psyche. Given the rhetoric surrounding mask-wearing, which can — as far as I understand — be reduced to “you're a monster if you don't do this,” it was ha