So, I have new loppers, although not the ones I really wanted. The ones I had were pretty compact for loppers, only 18" long or so, similar to these. They were light, and in a pinch I could manage them one-handed. They also used Fiskars' "3X" gearing system for added leverage, which was a feature I liked. That's what I was looking for when I set out to get the new pair. Except no one had them. Not Wal-Mart; not the Depot; not Lowes. Oh, they all carried Fiskars, but only in the 27" size. (Wal-Mart did have these, but it was an anvil model, versus the bypass type (which are more like scissors), and they were made out of plastic rather than metal. No sale. BJ's had the Lop and Saw model, which were close to what I wanted, but I already have a saw, and they were way more expensive than plain old loppers. Amazon had the ones I wanted, but they would take awhile to get here. Then I noticed something on the Fiskars site. They have a lifetime warranty. It turns out I may be able to get mine replaced under warranty. That would be nice.
Meanwhile, however, I still needed a pair for right now. Knowing that I may be getting my smaller pair replaced, I went ahead and got a 27" pair at Lowes. They are heavier and more tiring to use than my old ones, but on the other hand, I can lop higher branches with them. They certainly work. Now I just need to contact Fiskars about the other pair.
I have lots of crocuses already, even out by the cherry tree. Last year the cherry tree crocuses didn't start popping until the second week of April. That seems odd, because it hasn't exactly been warm this month.
Today is my annual journey to Connecticut to eat ribs, drink beer, watch college basketball, and talk baseball, which makes it possibly the best day of the year ever.