Laying low today with a slight digestive problem has created time to observe and think. Observe? Yes! Afternoon time spent watching cardinals fly in and out of the bushes, fat squirrels raiding the bird-feeders, and giggling at the ridiculous strut of the huge wild turkeys that are passing through the neighborhood. And think? Well, not too deeply.
Of prime consideration is the replacement of a seven-year-old gas grill which, silently brooding on the rear deck, cannot be resurrected this season, unlike in years past. You see, its parent family Weber has stopped making replacement parts for this ancient of days, and so it is time to look for a new one.
Naturally there are many options. As our regular G.E. serviceman (a self-proclaimed authority on most things appliance-related, and always sporting a thick moustache and even thicker gold neck-chain) insists: "A flame is a flame!" But what may seem like a good flame deal may prove him wrong. A four-burner grill at the Home Depot has been substantially discounted, but when one reads the consumer reviews that mention such units catching on fire, it is surely time to look elsewhere. Overcooking meat is one thing, but charring guests is something that has not been socially acceptable since the days of the Spanish Inquisition. Did one Jesuit ever say, "A flame is a flame?" Quite probably!
Also this particular incendiary brand and model required "self-assembly." Having spent three recent days building a huge, adjustable basketball hoop and stand, I have concluded that self assembly is too closely related to engineering, which in my opinion is a dark art, and best left to those who feel a definite vocation to wield a wrench. In other words, let someone else build the damn thing.
In the meantime, some of those same turkeys have just returned. And earlier a cardinal perched on the old grill, perhaps as a token of passing grief. And not an Inquisitor in sight.