Another Thing I Do You Probably Don’t

Pay some dude to re-gravel my driveway. It’s a two-load gig, by the way. Yes, long driveway.

54 Comments on “Another Thing I Do You Probably Don’t”

  1. I bought your books; therefore, I sort of paid this guy to re-gravel your driveway (unless this is coming out of Krissy’s money or Athena’s allowance). He’d better do a good job, and please remind him that I have very high standards and expectations when it comes to this sort of thing.

    The thing is, I think your driveway is longer than the street I live on.

    Still… How cool is it to see a big, honkin’ dump-truck in your drive, man?

  2. Yeah, but did you ever wonder what happens to the old gravel? Where does it go? Evaporation? Sublimation. Gravel thieves? Personally, if my drive is any indicator, the gravel slowly escapes into the grass, heading slug-like for the woods.

    And, Jeri, Scalzi makes his father in law mow the lawn, by hand, with fingernail clippers.

  3. Dan prolly paid for three of those rocks so make sure they are in the right place. I bet Mr Scalzi doesn’t mow that grass. He has sheep for that.

  4. Please take the rocks I bought and carefully place them toward the center of the drive. That way they won’t be constantly run over by tires. Thank you very much.

  5. Actually, yes, I do do this – for my own driveway, of course. In fact, I did this two years ago and will be doing it again in Fall of 2008.

    Jim W: in my case, inaddition to the gravel getting gradually kicked off into the grass and ground into the dirt by traffic, I also find piles of gravel where the snow is plowed during the winter.

  6. Growing up we had a gravel driveway on a hill – I distinctly remember being 5 years old, helping shovel gravel in a driving thunderstorm and carry it back up to the top of the hill so it wouldn’t all wash away in the rain. Those were the good ole days. Funny, I don’t recall ever getting a new load of gravel for it, though….

  7. So does the second load go over the first? If they’re sequential, is there a rake or shovel involved to get a nice, seamless transition between load one and load two? Inquiring minds want to know.

    We had a gravel thing going in our front garden for a while. We eventually figured out that ground cloth under the gravel kept it from getting weedy.ground in, but something tells me that wouldn’t be the best option for a driveway. Enjoy your oh-so-delightful new gravel.

  8. Maybe not, but I have been on the wrong end of both shovel and rake re-graveling my parent’s driveway. This combined with the seemingly endless hours of picking up rocks from the back forty helped to form an early sense of irony.

  9. There was a time I was waiting for 22 yards of gravel to be delivered for my driveway when a couple of Mormon missionaries showed up on my front porch. They had just started their pitch when the gravel truck pulled into the driveway, its big diesel engine roaring and the rocks loudly pouring out the back. They shouted above the noise that they would come back, but they never did.

  10. Echo that I too have participated in paying some dude to re-gravel your driveway. ;-)

    Green acres is the place to be
    Farm living is the life for me!

    Just playin’ Six Degrees of Paris Hilton….

  11. I’ve had to do that as well, although usually we only get one load at a time. Also, I notice that they’re spreading it for you. I usually end up spending a couple of hours in cold wind raking it into place.

    Granted, I live in New Mexico though, so I don’t have to worry about the riding lawnmower thing. Grass is rarely green out here.

  12. Does a two-load driveway mean you have enough privacy to shoot off fireworks and garden naked? (I recommend not combining the two.) If so, well done.

  13. Had to do it until two years ago, for a shared driveway. Lisa L is correct. You put the gravel down in, say, June, then in February a snow plow comes and pushes a substantial amount of it onto your devil’s strip (“tree lawn” for you non-northeast Ohioans who don’t talk English good). The remaining gravel gets mushed down over time by cars and rain and the GWOT. Worms probably drag some down, down to fashion wonderous worm cathedrals.

    The next year (or two) you do it all over or your drive becomes a grooved path of compacted rock dust with a mohawk of weeds running up the middle. Looks real nice. But the gravel’s still cheaper than concrete!

  14. Well, I would do that, but my condo association would have a cow if I dumped gravel on their nice, clean asphalt.

    Yeah, they usually have a rule prohibiting naked gardening too. Tyrants.

  15. The guy who owned our house before we did evidently redid one of the bathrooms at some point in the past. Every spring we have a bunch of 1″X1″ blue tiles come to the surface in our backyard. Would you like me to save them up toward the next graveling? They’d make a pretty accent, don’t you think?

  16. changterhune – Before you hear lies from Chang Terhune himself, we thought we’d tell you the truth: without us, his old action figures, he’d be nowhere. He loved science fiction from way back and began reading it at an early age, but it was through us that he acted it all out. That’s what led to the writing. He watched a lot of science fiction shows like Star Trek, U.F.O, and movies, too. But we were always there to do his bidding. And it’s like they say: you always forget about the little people on your way up. Oh, the 70’s and early 80’s with him were good times! He’d use these blocks and make all the crazy buildings for us to be in his stories. I gotta say the kid’s imagination was pretty damn fertile. Oh, he had friends, but they just weren’t into it like him. He was like the Lance Armstrong of action figures. And of science fiction. At first, when he began writing in the eighth grade, we didn’t mind. He still made time for us. And we knew that when he was holding us in his sweaty little hands and he got that far off look in his eye, he’d come back to burying us in the back yard or - god forbid! – blowing us up with firecrackers. But it was worth it for a part in one of those stories. We loved him for it. He kept us around even when we were minus a leg or two - or even a head. In that mind of his, he found a use for all of us. Then he discovered girls. October, 1986. It was like the end of the world. One day we’re standing in the middle of this building block creation he’d pretended was some marble city on a planet near Alpha Centauri and the next we were stuck in a box in the closet. Not even a “See ya later!” Nope, it was into the closet, then we heard some high-pitched girly-giggles then silence. We didn’t see him for years. We got word about him once in a while. Heard he took up writing, but it was crap like “The Breakfast Club” only with better music. We couldn’t believe it. Not Charlie. What happened to those aliens with heads he’d sculpted out of wax? Spaceships? Those complex plots? All gone. For what? You guessed it: Girls. Emotions. “Serious fiction.” I tell you, it was like hearing Elvis had left the building. During our two decade exile in the closet, we heard other things about him. He went to college. He wrote a lot, but not much he really liked. We knew it even then. It was like he didn’t dare write science fiction. Some of us had lost hope and just lay there. Others kept vigil, hoping for a day we didn’t dare speak about. Then we heard he’d stopped writing in 1996. Did he come to reclaim us? No. He took up music for ten years or so. He took up yoga. Once in a while, he’d visit us in the closet. But it was half-hearted. His mind was elsewhere. Then one day, he really did come back for us. One second we’re in the dark and the next thing we know we’re in a car headed for Massachusetts. Suddenly we got a whole shelf to ourselves out in broad daylight! Then he bought a bunch of others form some planet called Ebay. He’d just sit and stare at us with that old look. But why were we suddenly back in the picture? He had a wife now, who didn’t mind that he played with us. So what had happened? Turns out he’d never forgotten about those stories. He’d been thinking about all of us and the stories he’d made up and then remembered he’d been a writer once. From the shelf we could see him typing away. Before long he’s got a whole novel together! Then he’s working on another one. Word is there are two more in the planning stages! Some short stories, too! It’s good to see him using his imagination again. Its good to know he never abandoned us. He returned to his true love of science fiction. We hear the stories are pretty good. Someday we’ll get one of the cats to score us a copy of the manuscript. Man, it’s good to be out of the damn closet! --- I'm smarter than you I'm harder than you I'm better than you I'm just raw I'm hotter than you More popular than you More clever than you And goshdarn it, people like me I'm smarter than you I'm harder than you I'm better than you I'm just raw I'm hotter than you More popular than you More clever than you And goshdarn it, people like me
    Chang who is Chang but is Not not chang

    Aintcher got any snow out there in Ohiyer?

  17. Folks, John lives in southern Ohio. Near the Miami river. Likely the truck driver was wearing flip-flops and a wife-beater today.

  18. The in laws have a 3 loads gravel driveway with s curves sitting on clay and under the clay is glacial till and volcanic ash & pumice deposits that gets annual frost heaves, -30C winter to 5C spring with rain; the bog down effect is about 3 feet deep which can eat your car.

  19. The next year (or two) you do it all over or your drive becomes a grooved path of compacted rock dust with a mohawk of weeds running up the middle. Looks real nice. But the gravel’s still cheaper than concrete!

    May be cheaper, but we were delighted when my parents blacktopped their driveway. Shoveling a gravel driveway is horrible–and since their driveway is pretty steep, it was kinda necessary.

  20. I don’t have to do that. In fact, I get paid to load trucks with gravel. Except, not gravel so much as boulders, and not gravel trucks but rock trucks. I load them with a shovel but a big huge power shovel, not a hand shovel.

  21. It took 4 truckloads of roadbase to do my driveway this fall. It wasn’t the length so much as the buffalo wallows. Some of those holes were big enough to eat Volkswagens.

  22. > Yeah, they usually have a rule prohibiting naked gardening too.

    If they didn’t before, they did after I moved in. Barstids.

  23. # Rembrant Says:
    December 27th, 2007 at 2:23 pm

    Dan prolly paid for three of those rocks so make sure they are in the right place.

    Well, now that you bring it up, could you place those rocks of mine somewhere toward the middle of the driveway, John? Make sure they’re not too close to the road since I don’t want to be swept away by a snowplow, but I also don’t want to be too close to the house so as to impose on your life or anything. My stones aren’t rude, ya know.

    Oh! And if you could find a spot in the shade, that would be choice. After all, I tend to burn if I’m left lying in the driveway all day.

    So, remember: Not too close to the road. Not too close to the house, and preferably in the shade if possible.

    Thanks, John! You’re the best.

  24. #39 Mike,

    More like Athena and her friends rampaging across the lawn. For it is the bounden duty of all nine year olds everywhere to create as much noise and havoc as possible so long as the sun shines and clouds drift by in the sky. It’s enough to wear out a border collie.

  25. Once the gravel is put down, do you have someone put a binder on the driveway?
    Some of the better liquid binders made today are almost as good and long lasting as asphalt.
    A bit less expensive too.

  26. True, but in the part of Kentucky where my family lives, they and their neighbors (who are mostly just more family; hey it’s Kentucky) have to periodically pay some nice chap to regravel their roads. Just another perk of life in the holler!

  27. LOLTruck:

    “I’m in ur drivewaiz, hidin ur evidentz”

    And somebody bought you a couple of those rocks on my behalf, too, ’cause I found OMW and TGB under the Conspicuous Consumption Tree this year (and I have to say that while I haven’t read ’em yet, because I’m saving them to savor some day when I’m snowed in and my snowblower has gone off skiing or something, I did what I always do in bookstores, which is read the back cover blurb, then flip open randomly and read a couple pages, two or three times, and this looks like it’s gonna be wicked good fun and I’m almost sorry I didn’t buy the hardcover when it came out, but I’m cheap. And broke.)

  28. Daily lives to, ceramics However In?Memory Open REGEDIT, the memoirs of.Up of this, at first var.Runs into some kids, more than before visitors and have.Swing comes naturally, With this technique.,

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