Story Archive



Posted on January 30, 2013 by
on the road at
Megalong Valley, New South Wales



How's the WAR AGAINST TERROR going? Have we managed to bomb a bit of peace back into the world yet. Surely after the collateral damage in Irag and Afghanistan and all the other countries who don't believe in "freedom" they would have learnt something. 

What about the WAR ON DRUGS - Probably about as successful as the one being waged on POVERTY that sees the top one percent oozing wealth, money dripping out of every pore like  sauce from a Big Mac. 

There is another war, less acknowledged and with as much chance of success. It is being waged in the suburban yards and in the inner cities. It is a constant fight taken up in the courtyards of apartment buildings and in parks and offices alike. There is no street where the sounds of battle are not heard, usually about 8 o'clock in the morning but only if you'd wanted to grab a bit more sleep.

Yes, its the WAR ON LEAVES. The battle is enjoined by gardeners and maintenance men. Indeed guerilla activity has reached the suburban streets where late on a perfect Sunday afternoon an overweight man who could well do with a bit of exercise, like say a bit of sweeping, blows those leaves away. 

We know what Clint Eastward would say to an autumn leaf about to drop off a tree. 

Next to trucks that go beep beep beep beep beep beep beep beep beep beep every time they reverse, no matter what time of the day, even at 6am in the morning while you are trying to catch up on lost sleep due to the blowers, the WAR ON LEAVES is about as insane as human beings get.

It goes to the our values as a society. I have challenged the occasional leaf blowing soldier about their carnage of wind. The response is always the BOTTOM LINE. It's Cheaper. Really! By how much? At what cost? For whom?

You know when you sense something is going to happen and it is only a matter of waiting, like Tony Abbott saying something stupid? Well I knew that THE DUELING BLOWERS would happen eventually. I heard them before I saw them. There they were, two shirtless young gardeners blowing in tandom, lost in a cloud of leaves and dust, SHOCK & AWE in downtown Coogee, making this goddam city safe from leaves. 

There are those that say - hey, they are only blowing them somewhere else - or - I love leaves - both, of course, are right.

I haven't even mentioned petrol fumes or men finding their expression of masculinity by blowing leaves off the driveway. I don't have to because I am writing from the Megalong Valley. It is a beautiful day. Tommie sits outside on the verandah. Leaves fall gently making a compost to contain the forest's moisture. Over time they will break down and return their nutrients to the soil. 

Falling leaves make my day.


Post Comment
lorie canfield
i totally agree with you eexcept it leafs and pine needles
Is it - buggar!
Glad I'm not the only one who feels this way... and the NOISE they make. They don't even clear the leaves up, all they do is blow them to one side, to wait for the next heavenly gust of wind... ;)
Jacqueline Sidwell
I couldn't agree more - I've never seen the sense in those stupid blowers. I have wondered who was daft enough to have invented them??
And besides, where‚Äôs the romance in a leaf blower? (Don't even attempt to answer that one)! Autumn Leaves¶ Nat King Cole, Eva Cassidy, Eric Clapton or Edith Piaf? Take your pick¶
Raymond...I just looked at your post on the story of Thaddeus and the history leading up to the situation today;  I feel so sad, so are able to photograph amazing images, crisp and clear, or mysterious or sweet.  Your ability to use words to illicit photographs in one's mind is as sharp as your lens.  You seem like a good soul and I am humbled.  I hope I may be as honest as you when I need the words to be. Keep caring and sharing, and thank you.
I agree its senseless really
Hi Ray, it`s a leasure to finally seethe face that belongs to Tommies dad!!! You are certainly right about all of the above! lus any annoyances aswell, I live on a junction, on me toddy with my cats, no immediate neighbours but cows, sheep, squirrels and the such like, and aart from the annoyance of drivers that are too impatient to wait for new commers to the t-lights and have to honk there horns, intending a hurry up, instead cause confusion!!! and wake me at ridiculous o`clock!!! Put me in the middle of nowhere, somebody please???!!! Luvs from Somerset England, Rainbow blessings to yourself and my fave FB Doggie Tommie XXX
liz bagnall
Why waste all that time blowing the leaves hither and thither. I always put mine on the borders for the worms to munch on, makes the soil very enriched. What a ridiculous invention and the noise? Grrrrgh!!
I've even seen people using them on windy days when it is completely counterproductive!
Melody Talbot
I think leaf blowers should be against the law. They are only fun for the person using them and if that person really wants to move the leaves, they should get some exercise and use a broom, brush, rake or whatever they like that does not make noise or smell!!!
Re your comment abt expreswsing their masculinity: just take a look at the photo and how that blow-hose...uh...projects.