"We must achieve the character and acquire the skills to live much poorer than we do. We must waste less. We must do more for ourselves and for each other. It is either that or continue merely to think and talk about changes that we are inviting catastrophe to make. The great obstacle is simply this: the conviction that we cannot change because we are dependant on what is wrong. But that is the addict's excuse, and we know that it will not do."
—Wendell Berry

Monday, 12 December 2011

Yes, I use a scythe. No, I don't want to borrow your lawnmower.

The title above is the response I most frequently use when people see me out scything.
Whetting the blade.
We use scythes simply because they are more versatile than a brushcutter or lawnmower. A scythe uses no petrol, needs no shop servicing and is just plain fun. The drawbacks? Well scything takes a certain amount of skill, I don't know if that is really a drawback though. A scythe also requires a degree of physical effort which I am also not entirely sure is a drawback.
I spoke to a rather sceptical acquaintance yesterday about using a scythe. He claimed he would not use a scythe because it is too much effort, he prefers his ride on mower. When I asked if he gets any exercise at all he replied that he goes to the gym twice weekly. I pointed out he could save both money and time by getting rid of both gym membership and lawnmower, buying a scythe and still achieve the end result. The advice was not received well. In reflection I find it odd that both he and I considered ourselves to be superior to the other for the exact same reason. It seems to be the modern attitude that there is something wrong with expending effort on work yet there is nothing wrong with effort spent on play. Is it me or this just plain childish?
I have just finished an article for the Earth Garden magazine on scything. I hope they like it.

If you are interested in scythes in Australia, talk to these folks. Their service is excellent!

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