Bad Barbecue

Traditionally, guys have been the barbecue specialists. Maybe because a barbecue grille has wheels, breaths fire and leaves trails of smoke much in the way a supercharged race car does. Me? I’ve never had the inclination to cook with any contraption, no matter how manly it might be. Partial blame should go to living in NYC where I learned to order out very well. Add a side order of laziness and you have a recipe for not cooking at all.

Aside from that, I’m apprehensive about firing up the flame on the grille and watching the shrimps shrink on the ol’ barbie. Mainly because I don’t want to be a part of the show, going up in flames along with the franks.

Initially, my wariness dated back to college when Ricky, a fellow alumnus, went to serve up some rib-eye steaks and doused too much lighter fluid on the grille. Along with the rib-eyes were some of his eyebrows that had been singed off, rendering the the meal unsuitable even for starving college kids.

My deeper apprehension of barbecuing comes from being a former firefighter. First day of training, we were subjected to a series of videos which left an indelible impression. Two of the twenty clips showed the results of barbecues gone wild. Let’s just say it wasn’t a very appetizing start to my firefighting career…or to my barbecuing beyond.

My wife’s the master chef and grilling goddess. She cooks just the way I like it, so why argue with success? I do glance out there on occasion to make sure she’s got it under control, so I’m working. Sort of.

But hey, I help in other ways: I do the dishes when asked, I clean up the counter when reminded, and most importantly –  I know exactly where the fire extinguisher is located. One needn’t ask or remind me where to find that.

So I’m not the bravest when it comes to barbecuing. I’ll always applaud a well done barbecue…I just don’t want to be well done along with it.

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