As an American, I feel it’s my invisible-sky-man-given right to go forth and destroy. The Fourth of July is about a lot more than fireworks and barbecue and your alcoholic beverage du jour. As foreigners who came over here uninvited and made ourselves at home, we have always enjoyed a fine tradition of slaughtering things. And yes, most of us are foreigners. Unless your great great grandfather slept in a teepee and had an animal in his name somewhere, like “Runs With Squirrels” or “Teats like a Longhorn”, then yes, you’re a foreigner like me.
So, in that grand tradition, I started out our country’s birthday by destroying things. First, I killed millions of thriving bacteria on the old smoker. The remnants of the memorial day pork roast still clung to the grill grates like the last survivors of the Titanic right before the final plunge. Firing up the grill and heating the metal until it smoked made quick work of that, only to be blasted off with a jet from the hose. As an aside, is today REALLY our country’s birthday? We celebrate it like it was, but its more a “conception announcement” than a birthday. July 4th is when a bunch of guys sat down and signed a document that pretty much was going to start a new nation, or wind up with themselves getting hanged. A very strong motivator to win the war, at the very least. I would think our country’s birthday would be the day the last British ship sailed away and the captain gave us the finger and said “good luck on your own!”, much like when you finally get your crap and walk out on the sleazy girlfriend for the last time.
Second, I completed my second annual tradition of spraying around the house. Ants like to come inside during the hot dry summer months in the south, and forage for sugar bits and crackers and gummy worms and toothpaste. So annually I mix up twice the recommended amount of permethrin by volume, and spray the outside foundation walls of the house. This results in a sticky smelly death zone for insects that wander within a foot of the bricks. My neighbor has a bug zapper. I think the thing is powered by fusion, because from three yards away we see the purple glow and hear these zaps like someone fired off a 22 rifle. It’s an amazing little device, one I thought went by the wayside in the 80s. I have to get one, if only for the entertainment value.
Third, now that the smoker was heated up, I threw on a slab of ribs. True, I didn’t directly have anything to do with the death of the pig. It was pre-slaughtered, gutted and chopped up into delicious pig bits, washed, cleaned and wrapped in plastic to protect me from its uncooked germiness. BUT – because stores like to keep their inventory up, by buying a slab of ribs, there’s a pig in some stockyard somewhere who’s number just came up red. Sorry Porky, but you taste delicious.
Which begs a point – In all that processing and cleaning and packaging, why can’t the pig killers pull the nasty membrane thing off the back side of the ribs? They don’t toss a tail in there and say, “hey get rid of this while you’re at it”. No – everything else is done, but I have to fight the baby back ribs equivalent of old duct tape off the back side of the thing. I’m not sure why, but there it is. Same thing with the Turkey bits at the grocery store during the winter celebration of Indian-Killing known as “Thanksgiving”. How do they sell turkeys? By the Pound, right? So why is there a frozen bag of nasty turkey parts inside the bird? Thats an extra half pound or so that goes in the trash, and because its a holiday, it sits there stinking until Monday when everyone goes back to work. Unless, of course, you tie it up in the Walmart bag it came in and drop it off in the trash at the gas station. There should be a “no nasty gross stuff inside the bird” option. Or maybe a bin of parts beside the turkey display, like feet and wings and such. Ugh.
So, the smoker is doing what it is named for. Time to go check the ribs. I would mow the grass today, but I always do that on Sunday, just to piss people off. I never knew mowing on sunday was so forbidden until recently. Apparently I’m supposed to rest on Sunday because someone wrote it in a book somewhere, but that’s another post.