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Saturday, August 28, 2004

Now it's the trimmer 

I'll bet you thought once we had the new cordless mower life here would be sweet and uneventful. It's almost that perfect except for the @#$% string trimmer. With the new Black and Decker cordless mower, I actually look forward to going out and mowing the lawn every week. Such was the case last Saturday. I had just returned from a long week in North Carolina and wanted to reconnect to home by doing homey things. You know, pulling weeds, mowing the lawn, doing the laundry...well, I did do the first two things. So I got up early Sunday, fired up the mower and in no time the backyard was as smooth as a baby's behind. Then I decided it only made sense to trim around the trees and fence to get that full manicured look.

I pulled the Toro electric trimmer out of the garage, plugged it in (after wrestling with no less than three electric cords to give me the reach I needed) and pushed the button. Within ten seconds the trimmer line had snapped off. I unscrewed the lid, pulled out the string roll, rethreaded the line, and started again. It was slicing through the weeds like butter for about another twenty seconds and then, just as before, the line snapped off. Patiently I again went through the steps and started the trimmer. You guessed it. Another few seconds and another line snap. After the tenth time I finally lost it. I was dripping sweat (glowing!), had grass clippings clinging to me from my knees down, and the mower had reached a point where it wasn't letting me unscrew the lid easily anymore. That's when I became my husband. I threw the trimmer and my gloves all the while screaming at the top of my lungs about how much I hated this tool. I then walked into the pool and began floating around trying to cool off.

Within a few seconds I had calmed down and serenely viewed the situation. The trimmer was lying on the ground none the worse for its short flight through the air. My gloves were sitting on the patio and the electric cord was piled up like a snake in the corner of the yard just waiting for me to grab for it. And my husband was standing there looking at me like I had finally lost my mind, which I temporarily had. I decided the smart thing to do was nothing. I stayed in the pool and cooled down.

After another 15 minutes or so, it was time to do the adult thing and try again. So I did. Between my husband and I we did finish the trimming as best we could. Of course it took an additional hour or so because of the continuous stops and starts. When we finally completed the job and put the trimmer back in the garage, we both reached the conclusion that it was time for it to join the gas mower in the garage sale pile. So now comes the question of what do we replace it with? I've had other string trimmers in the past and always had the same problem. My husband thinks we would be smart to get a cordless trimmer to create the zen between the mower and trimmer. I'm all for that if, in fact, we won't still have to wrestle with the string snapping every few seconds. I've been doing some research and supposedly the Black and Decker cordless trimmer will do what we need when we need it with no hassle. It promises an automatic line advance without help, and carries a two year warranty. In my internet search, I have found reviews praising this product. So it looks like back to Lowes we go to get our new trimmer. Between the mower and trimmer we will become a member of the Black and Decker family. I just hope I don't have to throw this guy around too or someone is going to hear about it! Happy Gardening.

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Thanks to Andrew Stenning who contributed the photograph for our masthead

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