Last year, when Mimi was still one of those babies who STAYED where you motherfucking PUT THEM, I went outside of my house for a second. And when I was standing there, looking at my bright yellow house, I noticed something that I hadn’t previously seen with my bleary post-partum eyes.

Knock out a couple of windows and board them up and you suddenly have a house that looks like a creepy recluse lives there. I mean, I sort of WAS a recluse, thanks to a baby who screamed every time she got near the car, but that wasn’t the point.

The point WAS, Pranksters, the fucking bushes. I had to do SOMETHING about those bushes.


Those are a lot of motherhumping bushes. (also, not all are going)

But not then. OH NO, not then.

The Daver, bless his tiny heart, doesn’t like change. Nor does he like anything that requires manual labor (on his part) and I wasn’t exactly doing well mentally thanks to some wicked PTSD, so I decided that Bush-Wacking was going to have to wait until 2010.

He told me that I needed some elaborate plan as to what I needed to DO with the area where I was going to remove approximately 3,082 bushes, but really, I am kind of a less-is-more person anyway and the house is so fucking over-landscaped as it is, I was going to haul them out and see what happened.

I can see how ominous that sounds given my history of just “doing things” (see exhibit: Aunt Becky’s Cake Wreck), but I swear to you, Pranksters, I am actually an avid botanist. I mean, I grow ORCHIDS, and those things are notoriously hard to keep alive.

Anyway, it’s now the Spring of 2010 and Bush-Gate has officially arrived which means that I’m running around the house yelling, “I NEED TO GO BUSHWACKING, Y’ALL,” and Dave rolls his eyes at me a lot, because this is pretty much the way our relationship works. If you’re wondering how I got married, really, I don’t know either.

But I still don’t have elaborate blueprints created to show at precisely what trajectory I will put the new plants I haven’t chosen to go into the holes I haven’t yet created because do I look like I listen to The Daver? (answer: CLEARLY NOT)

Mostly because I am aware that his technique of making me do something painfully annoying is mostly just a stall tactic on his part so that I throw in the towel on my original project. Which, hi, not going to happen because I’m one busted out window and lamp made out of hooker boobs short of a Serial Killer Recluse looking house. The Daver, he doesn’t notice such things.

But, in order to perform such tasks, I was stuck surveying my sad stash of Bush-Gate materials in my garage. Nothing was quite up to par.

So much to the dismay of my search engine (who, of course, judges me based upon the shit that I search for, because OBVIOUSLY), I searched for “how to remove bushes.” Turns out? MOST OF THOSE SITES WERE NOT SAFE FOR WORK, PRANKSTERS.

Left to my own pea-brained devices, I decided that the best way to complete this project was to get a pickax. Obviously. Mostly so I could go BUY a pickax and then carry it around like Paul motherfucking Bunyan.

So I loaded my family into the car to go to what the three-year old calls the “hammer store” because he was convinced that I was stupid enough to buy him a hammer. While I was stupid enough to buy MYSELF a pickax, I didn’t think he needed to act out “If I Had A Hammer” on his sister’s head.

The pickaxes, it turns out, are in a special part of the hardware store that I like to call “Serial Killer Row.” They’re right next to the regular hardcore axes and while I carefully perused them, I can almost swear that I was being recorded. Probably because the hardware store people are very smart. Most people buying pickaxes are probably not doing anything but putting them into eye sockets and stuff.

Me, for as much swagger as I have, I am busting up roots and probably a finger or two because anyone who allows me near sharp pointy things has probably just increased my life insurance policy. But I’m guessing that I’m probably on some secret database now, maybe cross-indexed with RIDICULOUSLY BAD BLOGGER and POSSIBLE VICODIN ABUSER.

Which is why I made sure to have The Daver bring in the hardcore insecticide, pickax, gigantic loppers, and saw from the back of the mini-van before I took the kids to school. I didn’t need Ben piping up and telling his teacher that I’d threatened to cut off his fingers one by one if he didn’t stop slamming the door.

Even if I HAD promised him a shiny hook in return.

71 thoughts on “If Living My Life On The Internet Wasn’t Bad Enough, This HAS To Be On My Permanent Record

  1. I’m going to have to say I’m with the Daver on manual labor. I am allergic to it. I don’t like change either. Of any kind. I would just trim the bushes into funny little SHINING shaped animals and went about my busness.

  2. My husband once tied one end of a rope to a bush and the other end to my Saab and threw her in reverse.

    Bush came right out.

    True story.

    PS: I can’t make cake for shit, either.

  3. I am DYING to use our electric hedge trimmers since my hubs made the bushes all uneven but I have to wait until he goes out of town, and hope he doesn’t hide them.
    I am banned from tools, numerous things that plug in, sharp objects and super glue.
    My parents bought J a fabulous knife set for Christmas on the condition I NOT be allowed to use them.
    Until then, I was allocated terribly dull knives which prompted my grandmother to exclaim, “Jesus! If I want to commit suicide I am not coming to your house, you don’t have anything sharp enough to do the job.”

  4. I had a landlord once whose wife had a kitteh cemetary in the backyard (they lived in the other half of the house). When one of their 15 felines went to kitteh heaven, Morticia would head out in back with her plastic bag and pickaxe. This thing was the mother of all pickaxes. It was the size of Cleveland, for the love of the man.

    Wanna freak out the neighbor kids? Put on a salt and pepper wig that’s braided down to your ass before wielding that mothereffer. Sure scared me, and I was an adult. {shudder}

  5. My dad and I removed two trees err bushes last friday. They were more like trees due to stupid f*^%$ers that planted and never did any maintenance. Also the roots were like 43 feet deep. Ok maybe not 43 feet, it may have only seemed that way.
    Have fun pulling them.

  6. Its sounds like our husbands are the same about manual labor. Which sucks, but what the hey. Im all for a new look. I vote you should just set fire to them. Burn them to the ground and then start over with something simple and pretty looking.

  7. You are going to get pervy hits out the wazoo for saying ‘bush whacker’.

    I don’t have a pick ax but I do have a scythe and a machete. Walking around with a machete in your hand is empowering.

  8. Huh, we did that a few years back. The easiest way is to get a big ass chain and a truck with a trailer hitch. Wrap it around the bush, fasten the chain to the hitch and hit the gas!

    I guess that makes my claim to fame more redneck than serial killer, but look at my house!

    My FIL has decided that he’s going to get us some plants one way or another (I have a black thumb) so we have a honeysuckle on one side, a potted lily on the front stoop, and soon a rose bush. Other than that, we have wild tulips and 3′ tall daisies in my organically planned yard. (Organic being if it wants to grow there, I’m not fucking with it.)

  9. Me? I loves the yard work. Put some rockin tunage on the mp3, plug my ears and go to fucking town! Trimming trees, digging up old plants and putting in a rock garden; I LOVE mowing. Love my farmer’s tan even better (although, I’m going to have to get some good fake tanner – I have a wedding at the end of August, and the dress is strapless whilst my shirts are not) 🙂

  10. We are going to be removing bushes….. the lazy way.
    Tie a chain to it and drive the jeep. Out they come, roots and all.

    Nice pick ax story! I can see you getting frustrated and taking it out on a bush with your pick ax. It’s really funny in my head.

  11. Bwaaa haaa haaa!!!! And I have not even gotten past the link to your cake wreck! I missed that original post. So freaking hilarious!
    Back to the blog….

  12. I gleefully spent all weekend trimming bushes as well *snerk*. Actually, it was mostly trees and one butterfly bush that was long overdue for some hacking. And in the process? I broke my husband’s hedge clippers. Da-DAMN. Personal best for tool demolition!

    Also, I was recently in England (pip pip, cheerio!) and happened by a gorgeous orchid store- I had to get a picture for you, dear Aunt Becky! My husband put it up on facebook, and I tagged you today so that you can find it! 🙂

  13. Planning ahead for projects is so pedestrian. I’m with you – get some sharp, shiny tools and have at it. I planned a really impressive gutting of my playroom/shit storage dump this weekend while I was taking a shower, and I’ll be damned if half the room wasn’t cleared before I’d even toweled off. Then a friend invited me over for margaritas so I abandoned ship, and now the room is doomed to live in purgatory until the end of days. But the margaritas were delicious.

  14. You’re missing an excellent opportunity for a rockin’ giveaway. Best bushwacking comment gets their avatar immortalized in a front yard topiary.

    Hell of a lot easier than getting the roots out, I can guarentee you.

    Good luck with all that.

  15. I’m with the rest of the commenters here – get yourself some chains and a large truck. it’s the easiest way to go about doing it. although, if you get frustrated with the pick axe (i’ve done this with a pick axe before…it’s not fun. usually pick axes are good for smaller bushes (*giggle*).), you could always haul out the chain saw. and go to town. won’t help you get the roots out though 😛

    bushwacking…i can’t tell you how many immature giggles that inspired over here.

    also…for someone who’s obsessed with dexter, you really do have a horrible knowledge of all things pointy.

    good luck and god speed aunt becky and the daver!

  16. Good luck with the bushwacking. You so just reminded me of a wonderful story I’m going to blog about … where I walked into the staff room at work and asked the 13 guys sitting there (I worked with ALL men at the time) if anyone had a hedge trimmer I could borrow for the weekend because I needed to trim my bush.

    You can imagine the chaos that ensued….

  17. When I was little, our neighbors always had a huge garden in their backyard. I came home from school one day to see the neighbor attacking a tree with a machete. It was a pretty good sized tree, and watching him go after it, was really scary. I had nightmares about him coming after us with that thing for a long, long time, he didn’t like it one bit when we crossed through his yard. We stopped cutting through after that.

  18. Wait are Dave and my husband related or they just share the same desire to never (ever) do any manual labor. He has said that his idea of success is never having to execute a honey do list (and he means that two-fold) hiring out and escaping me..I typically just break something so it has to be done immediately! we need new tile whoops I dropped something and broke the tile in the middle of the floor (and by dropped I took a ball hammer and smashed it)!

  19. Oooh, my parents bushwacked a few years ago. They had pro’s do it though. Totally a truck with chains.

    Replace with mini trees, rocks and pretty things.

  20. Good luck with all that! I hope your going to take pictures of the after effects of bush removal.

    I’m more of a whack em’ down to nothing type girl than a completely remove them type girl. Course, I’ve yet to live in a house that we plan on spending more than 2 years in so I just try to look over the things that get on my last stinkin nerve!

    It’s getting harder by the house.

    Just so ya know.

    Ta Ta


  21. I want to rip out some of the bushes in our yard. Unfortunately, my yard is not overly landscaped so ripping them out with no game is a definite not going to happen. Only I have no idea what to put in their place. So the bushes stay for now.

  22. Put in some flowers that come back on their own.

    And morning glories.

    Everyone knows serial killers never live in houses with morning glories. Climbing roses and ivy, sure…but not morning glories.

  23. You probably should have searched for “shrub” removal instead? Anyhow, my goal is always to plant MORE things. And then my husband goes and kills them in any way he can (weedwhacker, herbicide, pickaxe, etc.). We also have a beautiful relationship like that 😉

    Seriously, I think he might be related to the Daver because he also wants an exact blueprint before I can convince him to do the “man”ual labor part, as well. Except our house has ZERO landscaping (except for the stuff that my usually pregnant ass was able to plant and my husband couldn’t figure out HOW to destroy). {SIGH} What can I say? I married a city boy – who now owns a chainsaw…

  24. go for it you should have seen my front yard last year (oh I have the pictorial proof)….. I took out a TON of bushes and I love the cleaned up look, and now I find out that apparently I have an issue (not unlike your orchid issue) with ornamental trees… I have been told I can NOT absolutely not have anymore LOL

  25. ok and we did the whole hook a chain to the bushes and yank them out, sadly though it made some pretty nasty ruts in our yard, we had a truck load of dirt brought in but still I think in hindsight I would have done it differently

  26. I’m pretty sure you can get a chain or good rope and tie around those bad boys and then hook the other end to a nice big truck and just drive until the bushes are up (roots and all)

  27. Good luck with yo bushes. My husband wanted me to handle our weeds so I went out and sprayed them but haven’t bothered to actually pull their dead carcasses. I’m more of an indoor slave. The day he gets that is the day our marriage runs like clockwork.

    As for The Daver’s stall tactics, I do this to my husband everytime he wants to organize the house. Organize in his mind is throwing all of my shit away. It’s like a hoarder intervention without the actual clutter.

  28. Gosh so many of our hubbies are related!! Who knew?! :p

    We got motivated one holiday weekend and hired a dumpster and went to town. Totally napalmed our backyard. Favourite tool? a ‘pruning saw’ that had these mean teeth that I reckon could’ve featured on Dexter. Just about as fast a chainsaw. Felt sooooo good at the time getting rid of all the offending crap that other people planted. But then yeah, reality hit. a) we had to come up with a plan of what to do, what to do and b) um, it was going to cost quite a bit to make it pretty. Ooops.

  29. Screw the chain/truck option. Go out and rent yourself a bobcat and scoop those babies up! The Daver will be begging to be part of your plan if you get one of those!

    Also, pickaxe? Totally useless, unless you enjoy hours and hours of hacking at roots. You’re better off yanking or scooping those bastards out.

    We had some storm damage a few years ago, and a branch split off a tree. We spent hours trying to yank the branch out with my husbands (giant V-8) truck, and it took forever to get out. And that was just a branch! Then he cut the rest of the tree down, and spen the last 2 years hacking at the stump with a pickaxe, and burning it. He finally got it down to ground level this year. I hate landscaping!!!

  30. Just goes to show that Google is really run by robots and aliens. Clearly, a seach for “how to remove bush” should not necessarily equal porn.

    If only people like us ruled the world, then things would make so much more sense.

  31. I agree with the Daver, manual labor sucks a big hairy one. However, you and C would probably get along juuuuuustt ffiiiine, as she has been sprucing up the front of the house and coaxing baby plants to live for a month now. Me… I’m just glad to see my pretty flowers she bought me! 🙂

  32. If the truck option is not an option, a reciprocating saw works well to chop the tops off, then go to town on the roots with an axe.

  33. Dude, your yard looks fine. Also? I’m thinking HAUNTED HOUSE for Halloween. It wouldn’t take much to decorate. What with the scary bushes and all. 😉

  34. If you need plants for that space, I love the Gilbert H. Wild catalogue online. 100 hostas for 100 bucks is there best deal.

  35. I prefer to hire hot young college boys who will do anything for enough money to purchase a keg.
    They do the manual labor and you watch from inside while drinking margaritas. Not that I do that or anything…just a suggestion.

  36. My yard once looked like yours and I used the chain and truck method (actually my neighbor did it for me because he watched me work futilely with my pick axe and thought I was helpless, which I was) because it was the only way to rip out the roots — which needed to be gone so I could plant what I wanted. I have to say it was worth the effort. 100% improvement. Just go outside and look helpless while fiddling with the pick axe and guys with trucks will start showing up.

    Laser hair removal would be easier but unfortunately that won’t work for all bush varieties.

  37. Seriously, I can’t keep anything alive, in fact I’ve killed things that the neighbors have, “…been trying to get rid of that stuff for years, even put diesel on it, keep coming back every year. How’d ya get rid of yours…”

  38. Ugh, I pulled out those same bushes at my Grandma’s house last summer when I was home on “vacation” it was a bitch! They were not very cooperative. Id recommend a landscaper, preferably hot and beefy.

  39. You crack me up! I, too,had a similar story of the attacking rose bushes and monster bushes. In haze of PPD, I took those electric-trimming thingies and almost killed my bushes. And I tried to kill the rose bushes,but those things came back with a vengence. All in the name of my first daughter’s christening party.

    Thankfully, to some unknown factor, my husband is taking the yard “seriously” this year, so yeah, hopefully I won’t have to go all Marcellus Wallace on my shurbery this year.

  40. Can I brag and tell you about how we removed six wildly overgrown bushes that were making it almost impossible to get from the driveway to the front door?

    Thank you.

    Hooked those muthas up to a 1 ton pickup truck and put it in drive.

    mission accomplished

  41. Why do people feel the need to plant bushes under windows? Especially bushes that grow really tall and try to take over the house? We have so many bushes here and they are all ugly weird shapes. Some of them actually prevent me from opening the window. A few weeks ago I went at them with shears and felt like Edward Scissorhands.

    Good luck taming your bush. Sorry, I had to.

  42. I love attacking things in the garden, but I’ve never considered using a pickaxe. Must be a special bend in the mind of serial killers.

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