Blown Away

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Story Submitted by Jill:

Chris was a guy I met online two years ago, and was the main reason why I quit the online dating world.  We agreed to drive separately to a restaurant for a first date.  For all intents and purposes, he seemed nice and normal.

Over the course of dinner, though, Chris asked me a strange question: "Does your yard need some leaf-blowing?"

I asked him, "What's that supposed to mean?"

He replied, "Nothing.  Just curious if you have excess leaves in your yard.  I'd offer to use my leaf blower to clean it up."

I said, "I think my yard's fine, but thanks for the offer."

He nodded, and that was the last we spoke of it.  It was a weird thing to ask at first, and unsettling.  However, the more time that passed, the more I simply chalked it up to his eccentricity, which was, for the most part, endearing.

After dinner, we said goodnight and went our separate ways, as we both had work in the morning.  On my way home, I thought that I'd likely go out with him again if he asked.

An hour and a half later, I was about to slip into bed when I heard the unmistakable sound of a leaf blower outside of my house.  It was around 10pm, and was sure to rouse the neighbors.  I looked out my window to see Chris going to work on my front yard, sweeping the leaf blower back and forth.

I ran out onto the front steps and yelled, "Chris!  Stop!"

He turned the blower off and waved at me.  "Just blowing your leaves," he said, as if it was all normal and completely expected.  As if it was my bad to have stopped him from performing such a vital service in the first place.  How silly of me.

I said, "Get out of my yard!  What the hell?  It's ten o'clock!  How do you know where I live?"

He said, "I followed you here after our date, then I went home to grab my blower and come back here.  I'm sorry if this is too late.  I can be by tomorrow morning before work."

I replied, "You're nuts.  Get out of my yard and never come back.  I'm calling the cops."

I went inside and locked the door behind me.  I watched out the window as he carried his blower into his car across the street and took off.

A single email arrived from him the next day: "Sorry.  Just trying to help.  Call me."

I didn't, and luckily for him, he never pulled a stunt like that again.


  1. Dude. She felt threatened. A man she barely knew had followed her home. This is exactly when you call the cops.

  2. how is a leaf blower threatening?

    "help me officer, he's going to blow me to death!"

    no officer would take that call seriously.

  3. Are you kidding me, 1f7da? The fact alone that this guy followed her home after their first date would've been enough for me to freak out. You can call me a bitch all you want, I'd rather that than be attacked by some weirdo with a leaf blower.

  4. sorry, but i just don't see that situation as threatening or dangerous at all.

    maybe it's because i live in a neighborhood where getting a knife pulled on me on the way to school is a normal and almost daily occurrence. danger is subjective, i guess.

  5. yeah mediator, i really do. haha. it just seems odd to me that a man with a leaf blower showing up on your lawn is dangerous when i come home to a dozen strange men sitting on my porch, leering at me, grabbing at me, calling me names. and the cops never come, so why would they come for some fool with a leaf blower?

  6. sorry for calling you a bitch, op, that was going kinda far. but in my neighborhood what your date did would be seen as nice, so you're not getting my sympathy.

  7. "i come home to a dozen strange men sitting on my porch, leering at me, grabbing at me, calling me names"

    1f7da, you live near Capitol Hill?

  8. nope, i'm in new england.

  9. Can . . can you move somewhere else? That seems like a terrible place to live.

    If the cops don't come when there are strange men sitting on your porch - your property - and harassing you, there's something seriously wrong with the cops.

  10. I thought Chris was trying out a sexual innuendo, but i guess he literally just wanted to "blow leaves off her yard"

    Kinda gives the story a twist if you read it that way first.

  11. metaleaf-- i'm only 17. i have a part time job but it's not enough to live on my own. i live with my mom and sis. mom lost her job last summer, she's doing odds and ends to pay the bills. i have to take care of my little sis. i'm not going anywhere for awhile.

  12. Damn. I'm sorry. I hope things get better for you and your family.

  13. Haha! Point to Pinkerton! OP isn't looking for sympathy, 1f7...seems the only one doing that here is you. Go back to Myspace.

  14. 1f7da6ca - GET A GUN.

    If the cops dont come for that, it sounds like you are going to be responsible for your own safety. Better to have one and not need it than need on and not have it.

  15. nbari - exactly what I thought!

    I'd be a bit weirded out at a dude I just met following me home at 10pm to blow leaves from my lawn.

    I wonder if it's worked for him in the past, or if this was his first attempt at nighttime garden maintenance.

  16. Better a leaf blower than an axe to the side of your house.

    OP - excellent job communicating clear boundaries.

    1f7da - there's better in this world and it sounds like you are working hard to find it. Good on you! In the meantime keep on stating your opinion and offering your perspective. Seek out the metaleafs and ignore the pinkertons. You'll get there.

  17. I feel pretty much completely the opposite, Bluejae. Yes, 1f7da's situation is terrible. Yes, she should try to get out as soon as possible. But she's also an uppity 17-year-old who thinks her short-lived, subjective experience is the standard by which all other people and situations should be judged. I think she needs a few more Pinkertons in her life to knock her down a peg or two.

  18. This comment has been removed by the author.

  19. I'd say calling someone a bitch simply because your life is *so much* harder than theirs is pretty much the definition of uppity, actually.

  20. ^ That.

    Seriously, I feel for you for having to live in a shitty area, but I can't stand it when people act like their lives are SO much harder than everyone else's and unless someone holds a gun to your head, they're not *really* hurting or bothering you.

  21. Now now, before we get judgemental on 1f7da's story, I think we need to get the rebuttal post from the leering groping men onto the site.

  22. It could have been worse. He could have been in your front yard trying to blow himself.


  23. ^Despite pimpin your blog, Mrs. Pickles, I must say that I'm enjoying your contributions to the comments sections.

  24. 1f7da - What part of new england are you from?? Im from rhode island area..I think its funny how we're from the same area and we both have a bunch of numbers and letters instead of our names/screennames.. Doubt you'll even see this comment tho.


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