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21 May 2010

yard work uniforms

This is the final story I'll pass along regarding last Saturday's yard work, having posted two others. I'll leave it to you to uncover spiritual applications; I think I'll just tell you what happened. It's not terribly exciting, but it struck me as funny.

It's pretty typical of me to work outdoors without wearing a shirt. This isn't just so people can see my awesome Herculean physique, but primarily because it's comfortable, it enables me to get a slight tan, and it's physically cooler than wearing a shirt.

I'd done all of the string-trimming while wearing only shorts. I was wearing flip-flops when I started, but saw that they were going to be covered in wet shards of grass (making them very difficult to clean) if I left them on, so I took them off soon after I started working.

Behind our house is a rather large field, surrounded by woods. Cows are kept in the field, and on this day the owner of the cattle was driving around the inside edge of the electric fence on a lawn mower, spraying the tall weeds with something out of a large canister. Not sure what was in the canister. Could've been something to kill bugs that annoy cattle. I'm not a rancher so I have no idea.

I was working in my yard, not very far from the fence. Before long the man was slowly driving by, and over the sound of the engine greeted me. I looked up, smiled, and waved. It was then that I paid attention to something I hadn't noticed before. The man, in his 60's, I'd say, was not only wearing a wide-brimmed hat to keep the sun out of his eyes (or off of his face), but he was also wearing long pants, boots, and a long-sleeve button-up shirt, with the sleeves all the way down and buttoned.

As I exchanged pleasamtries with the man while wearing an outfit that was most suited to a pool or the beach, I couldn't help thinking, "I wonder what's going through his head right now. Is he thinking that I'm going to get skin cancer if I don't cover up?" And I chuckled to myself at the stark difference in how we'd each prepared that day to do outdoor work.

Some questions that hit me: Do I think I'm invincible enough for the sun to do no damage to my skin? Was the man allergic to UV rays and would've been less fully-clothed if he had the option? Does the generation gap really pack that many differences? Was he thinking that I was dumb for not protecting myself against potentially harmful sun rays?

There you have it. No parallels, just an insignificant little shory accompanied by some of the thoughts that went through my head. Comments are encouraged.


Christy said...

He probably wasn't protecting himself only from the sun, but also from flying debris and/or biting insects. He wore boots to keep from getting hurt if he stepped on something sharp, yada yada yada. Lots of unseen dangers out there, ya know.

Don't know if that's the kind of comment you were looking for, but there you have it.

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