Grillin' Like a Man
Charlie and me went shopping for a new gas grill at Home Depot this weekend. The old one was plumb worn out, so it was time. I was on board with it.
But let me tell you, I was not on board for two hours of comparison shopping, debating the merits of this one or that one, different “features” and questions, questions, questions, like it’s some kind of fancy sports car or something. Honest to God. And of course, there’s a whole bunch of other guys there doin’ the same thing.
See grillin’, for the most part, is a man’s territory. Don’t get me wrong, I use the gas grill. But when I do, it’s called “cookin’ supper.” When Charlie grills, it’s a national holiday. And there’s beer involved. And usually a gang of other guys standing ‘round, staring at the fire, trading tips on cookin’ meat and talking about their gas grill. You know, “my grill is bigger than your grill” sort of a thing.
The manufacturers know this, and, boy, they don’t disappoint. I mean to tell you, there were some big, honkin’ gas grills there. Like, the Hindenburg-big. Sleek, black or shiny, chrome deals, with guys checkin’ out all the bells and whistles, kickin’ the tires and, (swear to God, I actually saw this) caressing the darn things. In fact, I found myself getting kinda jealous of one grill (goin’ for close to 4000 buck-a-roonies) when I saw the way Charlie was gawkin’ at it.
“Check this out, Ida,” he says, eyes all agog. “It has two side burners.”
“I can see that, but I think I’m good with the burners inside.”
“Yeah, but did you hear that fella? He says we can use it to cook lobster without stinkin’ up the house.”
“Charlie, how often to we have lobsters? Once a year? Besides, when was the last time you cooked something on a burner?”
“Well, you’d be in charge of the burner.”
“Sweetheart,” I says, exiting the grillin’ department, “there ain’t a gas grill big enough to accommodate both of us cookin’ at the same time.”
I killed time browsin’ around in the home decorating section, looking at all them shiny new kitchens and bathrooms. Checking out the lights and area rugs. Oh, and I picked up a few annuals and a hanging plant from the garden center. Every once in awhile checkin’ back with Charlie, make sure he’s not getting carried away.
As wacky as the gas grill thing is, it’s better than the charcoal grills of old. Holy, guacamole! This is before the people were usin’ all natural charcoal and mesquite and what not and lighting them with those funnels gizmos. No, I’m talkin’ a friggin’ mountain of charcoal briquettes, the afore-mentioned knuckleheads drinkin’ beer, squirting’ lighter fluid and playin’ with matches. Duck and cover!
Well, we finally settled on a gas grill, somewhere between “kiddy size,” as Charlie called it, and gi-normous. And yes, it has enough gauges and gadgets to preserve Charlie’s manhood without breakin’ the bank.
So it’s just ‘fore noon by the time we make it to the checkout, right? I’m hungry as all get out. My WW breakfast has worn off, and I’m ready for lunch. More than ready. Charlie and me are standing in line with the grill, a grill cover and some new grilling tools, when Charlie turns to me and says, “How come you’re getting’ another hanging plant? I thought we already had one.”
Starin’ back at him hard, I pictured myself doin’ something with Charlie’s new grillin’ tongs I can’t mention here.
Catchin’ on, Charlie goes, “It sure is a pretty color, though. Say, how ‘bout we head over to Ruby Tuesdays after this? I know how much you like their salad bar, dear.”
That’s it for now. Catch you on the flip side!