Wednesday, June 18, 2008

(06.18.08) Recommends:

Summer Cookout!

June is the official start of summer and there's really no better way to kick off summer than gathering around pools, booze, and grilled meats. Because we are nerds, and also because you may need some edification, following is A Primer On Summertime Cookouts.

Summertime cookouts are first and foremost about celebrating indulgence. The indulgence of leizure time, the indulgence of youth, the indulgence of being at the top of the food chain. As such, it is proper to begin a cookout at a place that sells stuff in the most unreasonable and unsustainable quantities possibly imaginable: Costco!

Because really, why buy enough for just one salad, when, for just a few dollars more, it is possible to foritfy your house/compound with a column of lettuce six feet tall?

You might think you're only in the mood for one slice of salami. But the day is longer and the sun beats down hotter than you anticipate and you just never really know when you might need stacks and stacks of salami!

And when the ocean seems to be running out of its natural supply of various lifeforms, why not just create your own goddamn ocean ecosystem?

Perhaps the most impressive thing sold at Costco was this tent which, although this picture hardly does it justice, is actually bigger than our apartment by an order of magnitude.

Implements of Destruction, Pt. 1:

The next step is to try to repent for your mega-structure shopping ways, by hitting Trader Joe's.

We had to violate Picture No. 1 (note: click on the pic for a better view) to capture this picture. We apologize.

You see, Trader Joe's encourages sustainable, responsible and healthy shopping choices including but not limited to, offering the following six bottles of wine for a total of twelve dollars.

Implements of Destruction, Pt. 2:

You should never attempt to start a cookout without first visiting the crazy uncle of shopping facilities: Rite Aid!

Implements of Destruction, Pt. 3:

Implements of Destruction, Pt. 4:

Now that you have safely made it back to the kitchen, it is time to make your shopping bounty bend to your will. What do we do with scallops that just sit there, taunting us with their pale flesh and laziness?

We wrap them in bacon and stick them with skewers!

Men are pretty simple creatures. Below find the Secret to Taming Man: Gigantic Potato? Check. Gigantic Knife? Check. Things Wrapped in Gigantic Pieces of Bacon? Check. The Champagne of Beer? Chiggity Check. Game, set, match. We'll give the gentlemen readers a few seconds to still their hearts before moving to the next picture.

Back when we were young and full of vinegar the world only existed in sepia tones, and all we had to eat was boiled potatos.

But kids today will demand their technicolor and fancy cut potatos and use of liberal-elite Chinaman sticks. Be prepared for The Modern Age and your cookout will be a success.

If you are like us, you should probably only be allowed to make one part of the cookout. Our old standby we like to call Skillet Full of Butter.

By now, it's time to get down to brass tacks. Remember: cook tri-tip with the fat side up (we don't know why this is true, it's just what the package said).

Once Al Gore stops trying to do the whole fashionable "save the environment" thing, we're hopeful he'll move on to important things, such as getting busy inventing the Scratch 'n Sniff Internet. When that happens the following pictures will really knock your socks off.

After [some amount of time], the meat will be ready to be taken off the grill. At which point you should cut [either with or against] the grain.

A meal fit for a King.

Cookout Economics 101: Since it came into effect in 1994, NAFTA has made it increasingly difficult for American Beers to compete on an even playing field with Mexican Beers. At some point in your cookout, you will probably run out of American Beer. But, since you're already eating with liberal-elite Chinaman Sticks, you and your hippie friends will have no problem drinking beer that's causing both the entire state of Ohio to go bankrupt and a huge influx of illegal immagration. Note: this is the theory that at least one person at your cook out will probably put forth at some point during the day. Rather than engaging, it's probably best just to laugh at this person and tell them they don't know shit about shit. This most likely will end the conversation peacefully. At which point you can go back to listening to the Beach Boys and talking about the awesomeness of the television show Deadliest Catch.

One thing that is true about beer, American, Mexican, or otherwise, is if you don't handle it properly, it can make your vision a bit fuzzy. This is to be avoided at all costs.

Your cookout will be delicious and you will want to devour it in three bites, but put forth an effort to finish your plate gracefully, in a manner befitting artsy black and white photography.

It is always best to invite people to your cookouts who are more interesting, talented, and/or famous than you. Because let's face it, your stories are getting a little long in the tooth. Perhaps you know the next future Mr. and Mrs. Dave Eggers and Vendela Vida?

Or wait, is it the next future Mr. and Mrs. Jonathan Safran Foer and Nicole Krauss? Either way, the point is you don't want a cookout where you're drinking by yourself (this is what your bathroom mirror is for, right?)

Once you get bored looking at each other, it's nice to have a pleasant view upon which to rest your gaze. The way it twinkles at dusk you can almost see why they call it the City of Angels.

However, we like to think of it as our own personal snow globe. Oh yes, Los Angeles, you've been warned. We will shake you up and remake you in our own image.

At some point, people might get tired and/or annoyed with all your photography. The shooter will become the shot (will become the shooter will become the shot will become the shooter will become the shot...)

After eating, you must remember to wait 30-40 minutes for your food to digest. Then you will get to make your final decision of the cookout. Hot tub?

Or pool?

There you have it. Following this simple primer nearly guarantees your next summertime cookout will be a raging success.

No comments: