Last year before I started this Buy Nothing New project I bought a lawn mower. It’s a fun little push reel mower which works great for the front yard. But the back yard has big clumps of weeds that get out of control, and the reel mower doesn’t like those at all. In most cases of mower vs weeds, the weeds definitely win.
So for some time I’ve been dreaming of switching out for a scythe. Taking out a large swash of weeds with one fell swoop. With a whetstone in a trusty carrying case on my belt, brought out from time to time to keep the blade in top condition. It’s a beautiful fantasy.
The thing is, a scythe is a big scary thing and I haven’t bought one. And from time to time I’ve just been pulling the tops of big weeds off by hand. Of course, that doesn’t really cut it (no pun intended) so last week I somehow ended up looking at grass hooks online and fantasizing about buying one. They’re much smaller and less intimidating. They can be used similar to my manual weed attacking but with a lot more efficiency.
Yes, it is Buy Nothing New 2015, but there are always exceptions. There have been several already. So I got online to see what’s available at the Home Depot that’s really convenient to me. Their website showed just one option in the grass hook category, but I was totally in dreamland and ready to go over to that big box store just to eyeball and touch one of these guys. Fortunately, just before heading out I noticed the “online only” note by the product description. Oh, well. It wasn’t meant to be.
But maybe I could get a used grass hook online. It would still count as Nothing New, so I wouldn’t be an official failure. Inwardly, I battled my demons of excessive shipping packaging that would wind up in the trash or at best downcycled and then headed over to check Craigslist, eBay, or any other site that could satisfy my new and nearly irresistable urge to own a grass hook. Fortunately again, everything I found was either sold new or clearly not in usable condition. So I was saved from making an impulse purchase.
After just a few days have passed, I already feel the urge going away. With my pretzel experiment this weekend, the bitter taste of buyer’s remorse is fresh in my memory. What if it doesn’t work the way I want it to? What if it’s too much effort to maintain? What if I wind up secretly loathing it every time I lay eyes on it because I put such time and effort into acquiring something that turned out to be not worthwhile?
If I do buy a grass hook, it won’t be any time soon. I have enough creativity and vigor to do something greater than just run out to the store whenever I have a problem. This year is more than Buy Nothing New. To whatever extent is both possible and reasonable, my goal this year is to Buy Nothing. In the past year, I can’t remember an occasion where I regretted not buying something.
Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful – William Morris
Use it up, wear it out, make it do, or do without. – Unknown