The Chipper

“Dad, we need a chipper.  There’s one at the church, maybe we can borrow it.”

“Really, I’ve never seen one there before.”

“I saw one in the storage closet.”

“Wouldn’t it be easier just to bundle up those branches and call for an uplift?”

“I need the mulch, besides I hate bundling.”

Isaac is zealous with the loppers and recently chopped some branches out of the trees in the back yard.  They lay there for several days before I asked him what he planned to do with them.  We have many times called the Council for a special uplift.  It’s easy, you just bundle or bag up yard waste and ask the Council (city management) to come round with their truck and it’s done.

But Isaac insisted he needed mulch.

Wouldn’t it be easier just to buy a few bags?

“Look, you need to call Mr. R. from the church.  He’s in charge of the gardening squad and he’ll need to know if you’re going to borrow the chipper.  Here’s his number, give him a call.”

I saw Mr. R. at church this Sunday and asked him about the chipper.

“No John, I don’t think we’ve got one here, at least I’ve never seen it.  But, I’ve got a small one at home you’re welcome to borrow.  It’s not much good though and there’s a much easier way to get rid of branches.”

Two days later I called the house.

“Look John, I don’t really like this chipper, but come on over and I’ll show you a much better way to get rid of branches.”

Isaac and I went over; Ben came along for the ride.

“OK, let me show you how this works.”  He gently slid a few small branches into the mouth of his machine and we watched as a small pile of chipped wood appeared on the ground.

“You see, it’s really slow.  It takes far too long for me to bother with it.  Now let me show you a better way to deal with your branches.”

He then proceeded to open a small package of rope.  He gathered an armload of branches and cinched them up.

“You just tie up all your branches, then call the Council for a special uplift.  It’s really easy and much faster than this chipper.”

I couldn’t help laughing at the irony and I looked over at Isaac, expecting him to see the reason in Mr. R’s approach.

He remained fascinated with the little machine.

“Do you really want to take this thing home?” I asked.

“Oh yeah,” he enthused.

We brought it home and hooked it up to the mains in the back yard and he began what I thought was a tedious process of cutting the branches into bite-sized chunks.

Two hours later he was in the house watching TV.

“Did you manage with it?”

“Yup, I got them all done.”

“You got your mulch?

“You should see it,” he smiled with deep satisfaction.

“You happy with the chipper?”

“Oh yeah, I want one.”

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