It's finally here!!!!!!!!!!! Memorial Day weekend could not have come at a better time this year. We have had a rough year what with the recession bounce back that isn't really as helpful as we hoped for and the death of Gil Scott-Heron. It's time for us to kick back, have a day off, take a trip to the beach and enjoy some of the things that make living an average middle class life in America so sweet. I thought it only right that I do my part this weekend by attending a friend of a relatives BBQ that I had been invited to. I only met this woman one time before but I guess I made a good first impression so I excitedly submitted my RSVP via text message.
Now let's get something 100 here... I don't just attend bbq's, cookouts, grilling (or whatever your regional dialect term is for cooking your food outside with fire) for funsies. I think of it more like a sport. A serious hobby of mine. When first invited to a BBQ I make calculated plans days before even attending. I make sure to stick to light meals for the days leading up to the event, ensuring as empty of a belly as I can get when I finally get there. I had high aspirations for this BBQ. I was envisioning hamburgers and hot dogs and bbq chicken stacked high as the eye can see in foil platter trays. I see bratwurst, I know they've got to have bratwurst. This morning I made sure to eat a light breakfast. I recommend a plain yogurt with some granola or three blueberries and a glass of water. I put on the cutest dress I own, It's lady lavender. with off-white lace gloves. I looked like I was going to my first confirmation. I figured they'd never expect someone dressed so lady-like to do what I decided to do to them today.
|This is the outfit Dita wore when she became Pennsylvania State Champion in the Famous Dave's rib-|
eating contest in Scranton.
When I got there, after following some pretty crappy directions, there was already a gang of people chatting it up and nibbling appetizers in the back-yard. This lady has a small house but her back-deck goes on for days so we had plenty of space. I played Inspectah Deck and eyed the two card tables full of various chips, dips and mini weenies. I scanned across and found a plate full of brownie bites, a bag of cookies and soft pretzels. Another table housed various containers filled with pasta, tuna, potato and seafood salad. It was at this moment that I realized why the terrorists hate us. A single tear began to roll down my cheek and as I looked up toward the overcast sky I gave God a mental high five for the blessing he had bestowed upon me today. I immediately grabbed two plates. This was before I even greeted the host. As I stood there stacking chips onto a plate an older gentlemen walked up to me.
"You're Steve and them's daughter aren't you?" "You sure grew up."
"No, that's not me. Can you pass the potato salad?" I made a b-line past the potential To Catch a Predator extra and said hello to the woman who invited me and her husband, making some kind of comment about them having a lovely home.
"Did you have anything to eat yet? We've got hamburgers on the grill now."
I lied. I told them I had not. I had pulled one off the grill when his back was turned. The husband made me a cheeseburger. I took the time to actually put condiments on this one. It was delicious in all the good charcoal-y and smoky ways grilled food always is. I don't own a grill myself, other than the George Foreman variety. Jorge never made me a cheeseburger as finger-licking stupendous as the cheeseburger I was eating at that moment. I took the rest of my burger and some more of the chips and went to take a seat on a lawn chair near another twenty-something stranger. We soon discovered we both had an affinity for British grime music and the show Lost. I was just about to give her my BB handle when the husband announced the hot dogs were done. I got up, mid-conversation and walked toward the charcoals. "Husband" asked me how many "us girls" needed, incorrectly assuming I was getting up for the both of us.
"I need three of them for her and one for myself"
I ate my four hot dogs in my car while I grabbed a pair of sunglasses. When I got back to the BBQ I noticed that even more people had arrived and were starting to clog up the living room. I did a head count and decided I'd better get back in there and go back for seconds or I may never get the chance. I said hello to a former coworker that I did not know was going to be there and stuck close to him in hopes the girl whose hot dogs I ate wouldn't come looking for me. I was so proud of myself for eating nothing but Multi-Grain Cheerios all week for lunch. I would have never been able to hold down those crab legs if it wasn't for that. All of these bulky carbs and carne asada steak was making me really thirsty. I decided to head inside for a bottled water. As I stood inside I caught the tail end of a conversation between my host and "husband", arguing about how someone had eaten the pineapple his mother had brought for her dessert. I ran back outside and wiped the pineapple juice off of my chin. I can't believe someone would bring fruit to grill if they weren't going to bring enough for everyone.
Happy Memorial Day folks! Please be safe this three-day weekend.
---- Vanity in Peril