Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Another Use For Duct Tape

Today I did my weekly chore of cutting and trimming the yard.  The heat really gets to you when it's 90 degrees at 11 a.m.   I cut the grass with a Craftsman lawnmower we bought 10 years ago.   Great mower and one that has served us well.  It is the mulching type and that is where the duct tape comes in.  I didn't take a picture and I will never show anyone what I did but I taped that sucker up good. 

On the mulching mower there is a flap that goes over the outlet where the grass is thrown, also where you can attach the opening for a grass bag if you choose.   Well, over the years we have had a neighbor's worker cut our grass.  It was always an off and on thing because he is a little older than I am and is very set in his ways.  I don't feel right telling him how to do things but there was always one thing that really hacked me off.  I would come home and find him cutting the grass and he had removed the flap that makes it mulch.  I would tell him he needed to keep it on there and he would explain that it wasn't part of the mower and it would burn up the motor because the mower couldn't breathe.  Well, it says on the mower "Mulcher" in English.  Very easy to translate to "Moler" but he never got the concept.  I would find the flap tossed on top of a shed, on the table under the palapa etc.  Why is it so important?  For one thing, you don't have to rake or use a bag, second, it helps to fertilize the yard, and third, it doesn't throw grass into the pool which is a nightmare to remove.   In the end, one day the flap disappeared.   I know he threw it away. 

Today I made a flap out of a clorox bottle and taped the sh-- out of it.   It didn't hold throughout the whole job but it did what it was meant to do around the pool.   I ordered one from Sears here in San Nicolas and am going there today to see if it has come in.

One of the problems is that Jerry (we'll call him that for today) like many other Mexicans never finished primary and can't read.  Numerous times I have had to help him with his cell phone and when we first knew him we would send him a text message from out of town.  He would say he never got them.  Well, of course not, he can't read.  His kids didn't finish school either.  I asked him one day why they didn't and he said they just didn't like school.   So his two grown sons work as security guards making 100 dollars a week and that will be their lives until they die.  Jerry is also the same person who believes that the size of a person's brain determines how smart they are.  I'm not joking here.  I don't know how we will ever overcome the problem of education in Mexico.  Everyone wants their kids to go to school but there are no examples in the family to encourage them to do it.  Grandpa didn't go to school, my dad didn't finish primary, so why should I go to school.  In my case, I always worked and went to school.  Even in high school I cut grass, shoveled snow, worked a part time job to pay for my books and tuition.

On another note, I ran across an interesting article today.  It is about teachers salaries in Mexico.  They are in the top part of the list of teachers pay in the world.   I keep telling people but they never believe me.  You can read it here:

The article is in Spanish but you can see the numbers.  What it says is that Mexican teachers with 15 years experience (in secondary) make an average of 21,000 dollars a year.  Of the 30 countries surveyed, República, Checklovakia, Hungary, Poland and Slovenia are the lowest paid.  BTW, those numbers do not include their juicy Christmas bonus where here in Monterrey that amounts to 5000 dollars.

1 comment:

  1. It's all about the unions, and the teachers union is one of the strongest and most corrupt.