A Real Interpretation of “The BBQ”

Laugh Tracks in the Dust


Ah, barbecuing meat, any kind of meat! It makes one’s mouth water just thinking about it — a slowly browning hunk of beef brisket with burnt ends; a savory slab of pork ribs or pork loin; a whole broiler chicken slowing turning and dripping on its spit in the BBQ; a standing rib roast of tender lamb or young goat slow cooking while you’re salivating over it; the grill covered in salty, flaky fish fillets that make your taste-buds tingle in anticipation.
Yep, there’s nuthin’ like a backyard or patio barbecue with family and friends. It’s the only type of cooking a real man will do. When a man volunteers to do the BBQ, the following chain of events are put into motion:
• Some woman — wife, daughter, grand-daughter, daughter-in-law, cousin, aunt, grandma, girlfriend, neighbor, or significant other — acquires the meat, the bag of charcoal, if needed, and all the accessorizing food.
• Some woman makes the salad, vegetables and dessert.
• Some woman prepares the meat for cooking, places it on a tray along with the necessary cooking utensils and sauces, and takes it to the man.
• Meanwhile, the man — who is lounging beside the grill, cold, refreshing drink in hand, BSing and communing with all the men and boys in attendance — is trying to get the charcoal lit and burning properly (after asking some woman if she will kindly fetch the charcoal starter and the matches), or else trying to light the propane-fueled grill without singeing himself, or setting the place on fire.
• The man haphazardly places the meat on the grill.
• Some woman goes inside to organize the plates and cutlery and check on the rest of the meal.
• Some woman comes out to tell the man that the meat is burning. He thanks her and asks if she will bring another drink while he deals with the situation.
• The man takes the meat off the grill, carelessly plops in on the plate or tray, and hands it to the woman. With luck, neither will have a burned hand.
• Some woman prepares the plates and brings them to the table or otherwise distributes them to all eaters.
• After eating, some woman clears the table and does the dishes, cleans the kitchen, scrapes and cleans the BBQ grill, puts the protective cover back on the grill and rolls the grill into its proper storage place.
• Everyone in attendance praises the man for the excellent meal, thanks him for his cooking efforts, and opens or pours another nightcap celebratory drink.
• After all the boisterous crowd leaves, in an appreciative moment of quiet reflection, the man asks the woman how she enjoyed “her night off.” And, upon seeing her annoyed reaction, concludes to himself that “There’s just no pleasing her!”
My report from the home-front is that it’s still dry, but the temperature has moderated into the comfortable range. I have cracks in the ground two inches wide.
The good news is that the grass has quit growing so I don’t have to mow for a while. Our tomatoes have finally started producing regularly, but we haven’t canned any yet. But we still plan to. Our good neighbor has provided us with some luscious cantelopes. I love ‘em and can’t grow ‘em so I appreciate his generosity.
The purple martins are preparing to leave for the winter. They arrived late this spring and so are leaving a bit later than usual. The barn swallows are gathering in bunches on the fences and high-line wires, an early indication that they’ll be on their way south soon. The hummingbirds are still actively fighting for their places at ol’ Nevah’s nectar feeders. The mourning doves are gathering, but I’ll bet most will be gone before the season opens on September 1. The Kansas dove season needs to open on Aug. 15 before the bulk of the doves migrate south.
On the flower front, our flower beds are filled with “pink, Naked Ladies.” They won’t last long in this weather pattern. Nevah had a cactus bloom this year for the first time. The blooms are a beautiful white and last prettily but for a single day. Hardly seems worth the effort of blooming, to me.
Nevah and I reached another milestone last week. We celebrated our 58th wedding anniversary. But, it wasn’t much of a celebration. In the morning we exchanged cards. That evening we ate out at Jacalito’s Mexican Restaurant in Strong City.
Overheard at the local coffee shop:
“I can’t figger why folks make fun of lazy people. They didn’t do anything.”
“No guts, no glory. No brain, same story
“You can only be young once, but you can be immature all your life.”
“If everything is going well, you don’t want know what the heck is going on”
Now my words of wisdom for the week: “I figgered out why they call our language the ‘Mother Tongue.” Fathers never get a change to use much of it.”
Have a good ‘un.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here