"They" say that when a man enters his 40's, he will develop a keen interest in one of three things: world history, younger women, or smoked meats. Luckily for me, Ev has gone with the latter.
As creatures of routine, every weekend, Ev purchases a plethora of random meats, seasons and marinates them, we head to the beach, and Ev cooks all the food for the week on his little charcoal grill. I one hundred percent support this hobby, and happily drink wine and encourage the meat grilling while enjoying an island sunset. We usually sample a bit of everything from our beach chair and then pack up the rest of the meat, which typically feeds us until Wednesday. It's our weekend tradition and makes us pretty happy...and it's not lost on me that this statement supports the fact that we are getting oooooold.
On our last weekend on island before our trip back, Ev returned from the grocery story excited about his latest find. "Look! the Hollywood ribs are back!" he cried. Ev loves Hollywood ribs and immediately got to work marinating them in garlic, lemon, seasonings, and parmesan cheese. The smell of the marinade made my mouth water. We packed up the meats, grill, beer, and wine, and headed to the beach.
Barbequing on a charcoal grill is not for the faint of heart. A few years ago, when Ev began his charcoal adventures, he quickly learned that charcoal grilling is not as simple as just starting it up and throwing the meat on the grill. This thing takes time! After years of patience and practice, and evenings where we hungrily starved until 10pm, Ev has finally perfected the charcoal experience.
Ev begins by surveying his space. He checks the wind direction and ensures that the grill won't be blowing smoke directly at us or at sunbathers in our vicinity. He throws his special hickory-scented charcoal on the grill, uses his fancy fire starter blocks, and adds bourbon-soaked wood chips for extra flavor. And...get this...he sets up 3 solar powered fans around the grill to ensure the most consistent burning of the coals. This is serious business, people. It's a process. It's a JOB. Ev receives a great amount of pleasure from creating the perfect charcoal grill and frankly if I must choose between world history, younger women, and smoked meats, I will happily support this hobby.
This particular weekend was the same as any other. Ev set up his grill, the fans, and the chairs, and began the grilling process. He cooked his famous prosciutto cheesy bites (like a grilled cheese appie), a porterhouse steak, and the grand finale - the Hollywood ribs. By the time the ribs were fully smoked, the sun had set, the mosquitos were buzzing, and we were pretty full from consuming our meat sampler. "We should have enough food to feed us all week," he stated proudly as we packed the meat up in a giant Tupperware container. We disposed of the hot coals, gathered all our items off the beach, and headed towards the Jeep.
Given the fact that I'm pretty useless on my crutches, Ev has to do most of the packing on his own, and as quickly as possible in order to escape the blood thirsty mosquitos. I waited patiently in the vehicle, listening to Bob Marley (Monty's CD - the ONLY music allowed in the jeep!). Ev hopped in the jeep, slapping the mozzies away, and we were off, wind blowing in our hair (well, my hair, anyway ;)
Just as our vehicle turned onto the main road, we heard a terrible noise.
"What was that?" I said, turning around quickly in my seat.
My heart sank as my eyes surveyed the carnage.
There, lying on the road behind us, was the giant Tupperware full of meat. Ev had forgot it on the roof of the Jeep!
I watched Ev quickly pull the vehicle over and cycle through the 5 stages of grief in about 15 seconds flat.
Denial "That can't be our meat! I can still save it!" (he actually opened the door with intent to save).
Anger: "I can't believe I left it on the roof!"
Bargaining: "This jeep needs a roof rack. I need to get one! This shouldn't have happened. Next time we need stronger Tupperware!"
Depression: "Not the Hollywood ribs. Anything but the Hollywood ribs."
Acceptance: "I hope the chickens and stray dogs enjoy it for dinner."
It was sad. Very very sad. We sat in silence, listening to vehicle after vehicle pummel the already-destroyed Tupperware. Sprays of seasonings and lemon garlic ribs flew through the air. Not even Bob's "Every little thing's gonna be all right" could save this one.
And just like that I got the giggles. I couldn't help myself. I just began laughing until tears were streaming down my face. This was so tragic. Yet so epic. It was TREPIC.
Ev stoically continued to drive while my body heaved with the laughter. He stopped the vehicle suddenly at Foster's grocery store. He returned a few minutes later with a tub of ice cream. Like a scorned lover, he drowned his sorrows in monster cookie ice cream.
Once the shock wore off and the laughter tears subsided, Ev went through our Tupperware drawer and returned with an air tight container. Flinging it across the room, he cried, "See! This would have survived that crash!" (back to denial). I nodded, again, tears streaming down my face as I convulsed with giggles. Would this ever stop?
Suddenly, Ev experienced a revelation and stopped throwing the Tupperware.
"So...I just realized that your crutch was also on the roof of the Jeep."
Luckily I had backup crutches. You never know when you will need crutches, so multiples exist in my vehicle, closets, etc.
The crutch can be replaced. The Hollywood ribs, however, cannot.
Luckily, Ev ordered a new charcoal grill (and very fancy fan that LIGHTS up!) for Candle Lake, so the meat-cooking can continue all summer long, no transfers required! In fact, our cabin at the lake constantly smells of hickory smoked barbeque, which brings all the 40-something men to our yard.