Let's pretend it's Memorial Day Weekend.
Now, let's mix things up a little bit and pretend that you've invited some people over.
Hell, let's go totally nuts. We'll pretend that we're having a Memorial Day barbecue. I know, I know. Ludicrous. Bear with me.
Now, pretend that you don't have a big enough barbecue grill to cook all the food you need.
Hey, you're me! That was MY weekend!
So, what do you do? How do you fix this quandry? What sort of magic potion makes for a bigger barbecue?
Good question. You'd think the answer would be to buy a bigger grill. Easy, no? No.
All I needed was a simple charcoal grill, a big one, but a simple one. Stores should be JAM packed with these grills on Memorial Day weekend. Jam freakin' packed!
Store one, Target, had no such grill. Small grills? Yes. Gas grills galore? Yes.
Store two, Home Depot had no such grills.
Store three, Sears, had no such grills.
What the hell?! I know that Sunday night was a little late to be shopping for a Monday barbecue, but how could corporate America have sold completely out of large charcoal grills? Isn't their job to have the items that America wants in stock? Don't they stock lots of Christmas trees around Winter Present Tree Day? Around Halloween, stores are filled with costumes and candy! And on Labor Day you can't crap without seeing migrant-worker-filled window displays!
So, I bought a small grill to augment the medium-sized one that I already owned and I hoped that would be adequate. I also bought one of them fancy charcoal chimney things. Getting the coals heated is not one of my barbecuing strengths. I suppose barbecuing food is not something I'm so good at either, but I'm getting ahead of myself there.
Using the chimney starter seemed easy enough. You stick some newspaper in the bottom, charcoal in the top, fire it up and wait. Easy, no? No.
Actually, the first few steps went well. The briquettes got nice and toasty and per the chimney instructions, I had some hot pads ready so that I could grasp the chimney safely. I grabbed it and poured the briquettes safely onto the grill. I stood back to admire my work and a little metal handle on the grill flipped down onto my wrist.
This could have caused a serious burn. I say "could have" because, technically speaking, the metal handle was not actually hot. However, it COULD HAVE been! Just to be safe, I emitted a manly squeal and performed an even manlier hopping motion while violently shaking my wrist to get the not-hot handle to flip back up. Although this technique was not specifically recommended by the chimney instructions, it's a pretty classic emergency response maneuver for me. (It also works when squishing spiders!)
Anyway, as it turns out, ha ha, not all of the red-hot charcoal briquettes had been poured onto the grill. One of them was still lurking inside the chimney that I was now flinging around in an unnecessary panic. Naturally the briquette took this particular moment to fly out of the chimney and onto a nice pile of dead weeds and wood chips.
Wisely, I threw the chimney down onto another pile of wood chips, and grabbed our nearby garden hose. I blasted the briquette with many gallons of water, impressed that I had somehow smoothly recovered from the near-deadly inferno. Also, it didn't take me too long to realize that the damn chimney was about to start another fire. I handled that one too.
Then, I burned the crap out of nearly all the food!
That was my Memorial Day. I had a nice big cocktail afterwards though.