How to prepare for Memorial Day weekend like a middle-aged man with high cholesterol

Sign Up For Our FREE Daily eNews!

9248777c 837f 4460 9a26 45e322df7bf7

grazianoMow your lawn. How many times does your wife have to ask you?

It’s inconsequential that you still own a push mower well into your middle age. It’s inconsequential that your yard seems to expand every spring, along with the addition of more patches of dead grass.

In another life, you’d own a riding mower, preferably one with a cupholder for cold Bud Lights.

Make sure the grill still works. How many times does your wife have to remind you?

It’s inconsequential that you half-expect the grill to explode, sending your flabby frame into orbit each time you start it. It’s inconsequential that you’ve needed to buy a new grill for the past three years.

In another life, you’d own a high-end grill, preferably one with steel searing rods for grilling thick steaks. Grilling is a manly endeavor—as long as you don’t throw on the bean burgers that your doctor recommended after your blood work came back. Real men own great grills[1].

It’s inconsequential that you can’t afford a new grill, or a riding mower, or even the expensive bean burgers that might taste like real beef.

Set summer goals. Lose weight. Don’t believe the propaganda about Dad bods. Girls don’t dig Dad bods. Ask your wife. This myth was propagated by men like you, only slightly younger and still capable of pushing a lawn mower across the yard without going into cardiac arrest.

Vow to do push-ups and sit-ups each morning. Google “burpees.” Do those, too. Cut back on the Bud Lights, unless you’re on a riding mower. By football season, you’ll look like Chris Evans pushing a lawn mower. No one will talk about Dad bods.

For now, make sure the grill works and mow the lawn, you bum. And don’t forget to turn over the soil on the dead patches of grass and plant some seed. How many times does your wife have to point them out?

It’s inconsequential that you could give slightly less than a shit about the lawn.

New summer goal: Start caring about the lawn.

Over the long weekend—after assuring that the grill works and the lawn is mowed, assuming you don’t have a heart attack—you can rest and watch the Red Sox and drink Bud Light. But not too many Bud Lights, or you’ll never look like Chris Evans.

To hell with it. Buy real burgers. Don’t count your beers. Listen to the Red Sox game on the radio, knowing you’re part of a dying breed that still does.

At some point, stop and recognize what the long weekend is really about. Then the lawn, and the grill, and your Dad bod, and your bean burgers, and your Bud Lights shouldn’t matter much.

But, seriously, mow the lawn. Or the dog will get ticks, and your wife won’t let you forget it.


[1] I’m going to go ahead and copyright that one and put it on a t-shirt.

About this Author

Nathan Graziano

Nathan Graziano lives in Manchester with his wife and kids. He's the author of nine collections of fiction and poetry. His most recent book, Born on Good Friday was published by Roadside Press in 2023. He's a high school teacher and freelance writer, and in his free time, he writes bios about himself in the third person. For more information, visit his website: