A few years ago, however, a new neighborhood noisemaker has appeared on the scene. And that is the gas-powered pressure washer, which blasts out water at 4 pulsing gallons a minute for hours and hours. Prices start at a mere $300.
For some reason, pushing a broom doesn't do it for some neighbors. They want to prove they're neatniks; they want to prove they keep up neighborhood property values, but sadly lack [or resist] the handyman skill of knowing one end of a broom from the other.
So in their quest for cleanliness, it's grab the pressure washer and hydro-blast driveways, fence boards, paving stones, flagstones--any thing in fact that needs those damn spots out!
As I said before, I have little problem with lawn maintenance or cleaning up leaves. Those tasks seem to have tolerable durations.
The problem with pressure washers is manifold. But the big one is when a neighbor has that hose in his hands, he seems to be able to hang on for hours. Recently, two to four hours seems the norm--and this for a driveway in an inner-city neighborhood! But I've spent a tortuous day unable to tune out the on-off-on pulsing drone of a pressure washer for six hours [driveway + fence + street gutters].
Yes, there's some sense of inadequacy driving pressure washer owners. But think about the symbolism of spilling out up to four gallons of water a minute at high pressure. Could there possibly be some psychosexual component? Some inadequacy? I think so.
The whole West Coast is suffering drought conditions and yet an unnamed neighbor will pick up a pressure washer at Home Depot and blast water at the grime on his driveway, thinking this is a good use of his time and surely the other neighbors--me included--must applaud his industry at keeping up property values, yet he remains blissfully oblivious to the straightforward noise nuisance and water wastrel he is, holding that pulsing hose.
Is it not irony that blasting away at his driveway, he erodes the surface at a fine granular level so next time the driveway surface will hold even more dirt when the urge to purge strikes him again?
Image credit: google images: hotpressurewasherreviews.com
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