Some men do things they aren’t supposed to when their wife leaves town. I’m no exception.
I kissed her goodbye and told her that I loved her, I would miss her, and to tell her mother hello. The first chance I got after her departure, I did a rapid, cursory inspection of the refrigerator.
Just as I suspected. It was full of healthy food.
I toppled the stacks of fat-free yogurt as I parted them like the Red Sea, looking for something that didn’t taste like a bland Elmer’s Glue. People who make yogurt think that if they give it a fancy-sounding Greek name and some colorful graphics, that we won’t notice that it takes like paste.
The yogurt people claim right there on the plastic tub that “Nostimo” means “delicious.” But, I spent many an hour in the third grade trying to impress the girls with my glue-eating abilities, so they aren’t fooling me one bit. I know Elmer’s Glue Lite when I taste it.
After removing the alleged yogurt from the fridge and restacking it on the kitchen counter, I run into my next healthy obstacle: a rotisserie chicken. I’d highly doubt that Colonel Harland Sanders ever ate a rotisserie chicken, much less considered selling one. He built a chicken empire on fried chicken, not rotisserie chicken.
Now, there’ll be plenty of folks who would say that Kentucky Fried Chicken isn’t good for you, and they’d be right. It finally killed Colonel Sanders when he was 90.
I placed the rotisserie chicken on the counter next to the Greek yogurt, and continued my search. Behind the chicken was lite sour cream, lite cream cheese, lite cheese, and a light. The one that goes off when you shut the refrigerator door. Which is what I did.
It was time to go to the store.
I entered the store and was greeted by a display with heat lamps that were keeping beef and pork ribs warm. To the right was a tall display of Krispy Kreme Donuts. Glazed, chocolate-covered, and cake donuts.
I’ve never cheated on my wife, but I was pretty sure that ogling a dozen Krispy Kremes was fairly close to what that feels like.
I pushed the buggy passed the ribs and donuts, hung a left at the imported beer, and there it was. The meat counter.
I slowly guided the buggy beyond the peppered bacon, spicy sausage, bratwurst, and had just begun to make my way though the lunch meats and refrigerated pickles, when I caught her out of the corner of my eye. The butcher was gently placing briskets in a neat row.
When she put the last one out on the stack, she tweaked the sign with the sale price to make sure that I could see it. She smiled at me, wiped her hands on her apron, and pushed the squeaky metal cart between the saloon-style doors before disappearing; leaving the brisket and me to talk amongst ourselves.
“Hello, there,” I said to the brisket. “Any plans for the weekend?”
I picked up the last one she had placed on the stack, put it in the buggy, and moved on to the beef kabobs.
Let me tell you, whoever thought of making kabobs that are ready to go on the grill is a genius. I rank them right up there with whoever invented the TV remote and the wheel.
A couple of kabob packages joined the brisket in the basket, and I then rolled on to the section with the angus hamburger patties. Three packages of those joined the brisket and the kabobs, and I was ready to check out.
“Lots of company this weekend?” the cashier asked me. Not wanting to be dishonest, I answered her.
“Lots,” I said.
When I got home, the cat watched me unload my haul. She gave me the “I’m going to tell mom” look.
On the back porch, I fired up the Big Green Egg (a large, ceramic smoker) with a stack of lump charcoal in the bottom, and placed the brisket on 250.
“I’ll see you in the morning,” I said to the brisket.
After making my way to the Man Cave, I lit the gas grill and lined the grate with hamburger patties and kabobs. The meat began to sizzle just as the sun set and a cold rain began to fall.
I built a fire in the wood stove. The heat was just enough to keep the Man Cave warm, with the open doors allowing the smell of the rain to compliment the beef’s aroma.
As the rain faded, the kabobs and burgers were done. I piled them into Pyrex dishes and made my way to the house.
A kabob and a burger filled my plate. I thought about the mountain men I see on TV and how they go out into the rain and darkness to forage and cook their food. Just like me.
The next morning, the brisket had a perfect smoke ring around it, and the internal temp was just right. I slid the brisket from the Big Green Egg onto a broiler pan and took it into the kitchen.
I sliced it into sections and placed them in Ziploc bags. The brisket, and the leftover kabobs and burgers are now hidden in the back of the freezer.
Just to make sure I’m not found out, I paid the cat off with chunks of rotisserie chicken, and I used some of the Greek yogurt to repair a couple of picture frames.
I also hid today’s newspaper.
©2017 John Moore
For more of John’s musings, visit johnmoore.net/blog