Hot! Old Red In Trouble

Down and Out 

Old Red, the legendary 27 year old 2 cycle self-propelled mower turned push mower, can only sit and wait as a three week long drought has rendered him useless for lawn cutting purposes.

His home turf in Middleton is a mottled mass of blonde, crunchy strands, the victim of severe heat and little or no rain for three weeks running.  Old Red, who stood at the very least  a better than average chance of eclipsing the all-time mow record held by Hammerin’ Hank Toro of 993 mows, had logged 14 mows this season, leaving him with 979 career mows, just 14 shy of tying the record. An early season start had made it appear that breaking the record would be a mere formality, now, another season of mowing may be needed to turn that trick.  Old Red has not mowed since June 21st.

“You are really rolling the dice if you think this guy is going to be able to get after it again after this season,” lamented his owner, Pat Heffling.  “He’s been bothered by all sorts of nagging injuries this year, balding tires, loose lug nuts, dull blades, uneven cutting angles, it’s a laundry list of maladies, really.  Without any spring training on top of that, he’s a mess right now, physically and mentally.”

Old Red, unabashedly an admitted heavy drinker, was last seen in Heffling’s garage nursing a tumbler of Maker’s Mark . “Straight up”, commented Old Red. “It’s the only civil way to drink this fine whiskey and besides, none of the ice lasts more than a few minutes out here in this sauna of a garage anyway.”

What appeared to be a celebratory year with national media attention, has suddenly taken a dark and miserable turn.  “Much like the Brewers,” added Heffling. 

Unless Nature obliges with a sudden dramatic turnaround in precipitation, it looks as though Old Red will fall just shy of the all-time mow mark he has so vehemently pursued these past six years in Middleton.  The likelihood of another season on the turf is but a mere pipe dream now for the mower that everyone at one time was convinced would take over the crown as the all-time champion.

This source has learned that several exchanges of e-mails between Heffling and the Ho-Chunk Nation, with the subject line, “Rain Dance” have been passed in the last three weeks.  At this stage of the juncture, who can blame them for at least trying?

-Scotty Green

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