Is there an proper etiquette for snowblowers?

One of the great things about being in the Midwest is the beauty of winter.  Ok, not so much.  I haven’t played in the snow since snowboarding two years ago and cracking a rib.  Don’t get me wrong: I like snow, but prefer to drive to it more so than living through it.

So this year I bought a snowblower.  My neighbor works for an engine manufacturer and had offered to help me get a good price on one, which turned out to be a great price on a two-stage beast that at first seemed like overkill but has actually been a huge blessing. 

But now I am struggling with the etiquette questions: how far do I go down the sidewalk?  What if my other neighbor has to shovel?  Should I ignore him or offer my help?  And if I do, how often?  Am I making a season-long commitment?  This is not what I had expected.  And because it’s mildly enjoyable I’m not necessarily resistant to practically cleaning my entire block of snow, but I guess at some point it because ridiculous if not rude — I can’t presume that my neighbors with their own snowblowers don’t relish the task themselves right?

For now, I’ve decided that I’m going to treat it like lawn mowing: I’ll stick to my plot of earth and no more: if my neighbor is gone, I might clear their driveway but won’t feel an obligation to.

Funny – I showed Ian Michael how to run it last week, and I think he’s eyeballin’ it for both enjoyment as well as a potential moneymaker.  That remains to be seen — I’m having too much fun mayself to give him the reins just yet.