Miller: Putting things off till later

Published 1:11 pm Tuesday, May 4, 2021

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The sun peeks out hesitantly now and again as if to tease. Thirsty trees and shrubs have soaked up the moisture from an overnight and morning shower and look quite green and happy. I took the opportunity to pull some unwanted weeds in my newly mulched beds, and was amazed at how many had popped up seemingly overnight.

Even though a weed control barrier was placed and secured meticulously before the mulch was applied, those sneaky weeds crop up wherever there is the tiniest break in this defensive barrier. I thought it would at least be a few months before I needed to get down on my knees in the garden, but such was not the case.

How is it that weeds grow so much faster than grass and flowers? I wonder if anyone else has noticed that they seem to multiply at an incredibly fast pace? One thing is certain; without diligent planning and a lot of work a lawn or garden can truly get out of control.

My neighbor took another preventive measure to keep the weeds at bay in his yard. Weeks before all the unwanted plants cropped up he fertilized to keep his lawn healthy enough to choke out the weeds. Next, he applied a weed control product to keep them from germinating in the first place.

When I look at his beautifully manicured lawn and my weed patch I can only mumble “woulda,” “coulda,” “shoulda.” How difficult would it have been to take notes on what he did and follow suite? In actuality, I planned to do just that, but procrastinated.

Now that’s a nasty habit, putting off until tomorrow what should have been done today. I struggle with that one from time to time. I recently went to the dermatologist and had a checkup. Growing up in the Deep South in the 70s we teenagers thought that a deep, rich tan was to be desired, and we baked in the sun for hours on end. Not only did we slather on baby oil to intensify our chances of being well done, so to speak, but sun protection was almost a dirty word.

When my doctor saw a spot on my arm that needed checking out I meant to go right away. But with the pandemic and life in general I put it off. The spot was looking pretty rough, and by the time I did go I wondered if maybe something was up.

Fortunately, everything checked out, and I only needed a little steroid cream to fix the problem. What a relief to get a good report, but this reminded me to beware of procrastinating.

I put off getting my vaccine for a while, but now that I have it feels great to have finally done so. I don’t like shots or needles, and I was hesitant for all sorts of reasons, but then I thought about all the diseases like polio that have been eradicated because of vaccinations and decided not to procrastinate any longer.

Jan Penton Miller can be reached at