More of an excuse to see if I understand the embedding tags.
I like it when I can light my grill before Major League Baseball’s Opening Day. We had a pretty mild winter in North East Ohio. We had some snow, but nowhere near as much as we’ve had the last two years. It didn’t get as cold, either – no -13F days with wind chills below -30F. Moving out of the secondary snow belt of Maple Heights probably helped.
I’ve taken my talents to the West Side. I do all of my grilling in Parma Heights.
Besides The Old Farmer’s Almanac saying we were going to have a mild Winter, I pretty much knew it when I was able to smoke turkeys for Thanksgiving on a sunny day with temperatures in the upper 50s in November.
Alas, I put the grill and smoker away for the Winter. Switching from Graveyard shift to Days, and all of the unpacking from the move, left little time for outdoor cooking theatrics.
Then February came, and with it, some beautiful Spring-like days that allowed me to bust out the Weber kettle.
Of course, being able to grill before Opening Day also means having to mow the lawn before Opening Day, a rite of Spring I don’t care to celebrate. I’ve got a metric shit-ton of lawn. (Or is it a fuckacre? I digress.) When I was done, I felt like I mowed the outfield at The Jake. Fortunately, I have a teenage son who is going to need gas money soon to help with clean-up.
Yes, you read that right. I said The Jake. Progressive Field is too much of a mouthful, and it really doesn’t lend itself to many nicknames. “The Prog.” Eww. As my younger friends and coworkers would say, “As if I can’t even.” I’ll stick with The Jake. Or my other favorite names for the Indian’s home field, “The Corner of Carnegie and Ontario,” and “The House That Beer and Smokes Built.”
I opened my Weather Channel app yesterday, and there they were. Three words I had not seen since last Winter.
I went into shock. The television and radio didn’t help, either, throwing around those other dreaded terms “Lake Effect,” “Snow Belt,” and “Alberta Clipper.”
But, I snapped out of it. “I’m a West Sider now,” I thought. “These awful terms certainly don’t apply to me anymore.”
It was not to be. I awoke to three inches of the white stuff covering the lawn, and at least an inch on the walkways and roads. Why plow on a Saturday? Nobody works on Saturday. And there were still huge flakes falling. It looked like a giant, fluffy down pillow exploded over the North Coast. I left early for work, which was good, because I-480 East was at a crawl.
OK. It wasn’t that bad. The roads had been plowed, but, what are you going to do when the snow keeps falling? The highway was slushy at first, but ODOT did do a good job of getting it cleaned up before I hit the Valley View bridge. And honestly, anything less than 60mph IS a crawl on the I-480 Speedway. I pulled into The Rocksino earlier than usual.
The worst was the sight that greeted me when I arrived home.
Sure, I still could have grilled. Just a little shoveling and I would have been in business. The thing is, I haven’t tried this grill out yet, and I didn’t want to get my heart set on burgers or brats, only to spend the evening on the phone with the gas company. Or worse, blowing the house up due to faulty equipment. I’m still not too sure I’m sold on the idea of a natural gas grill. And the cars were already in the garage, so, the kettle was trapped.
Besides, Christine was already making her chicken soup, and that sounded better on a day like today.