Girl meets grill

Girl meets grill

 

This warm weather has me thinking of what happened a year ago, when I won a grill.

 

I'd stopped at Home Depot to pick up some random home-improvement item, and I registered to win a grill through the store and a local heating and air-conditioning company. I promptly forgot about it ... until someone called me the next day to tell me I'd won.

 

(I went through some kind of lucky streak last year – I also won green cleaning products from a health food store, a wine tasting through work and randomly, karate lessons that I never actually used. But I digress.)

 

The friendly fellow who called failed to mention the size of the grill. I figured it was just a regular charcoal thing, and didn't think anything of it when he asked if I wanted it assembled before pickup. I sent my sweetheart and his pickup truck to pick it up that afternoon while I was still at work. It was raining. I told my boyfriend to put it in my garage.

 

A couple hours later, he called and didn't sound happy. He told me there was no way he'd be able to put it in the garage and he'd have to drag it to my grassy back yard. (At least, this was the gist of it, without a few select words.) He also told me he was thrilled (I'd never have guessed it from his tone) because I'd just won myself a stainless-steel, five-burner gas grill.

 

Ah, if only I'd know it'd be the catalyst for a crazy chain of events. I lugged home a tank of propane that cost more than the simple grill I'd been planning to buy. I picked out fancy grill accessories because none of my kitchen utensils were big or sturdy enough to stand up to my grill.

 

I needed a place to put the grill (which may possibly be larger than my kitchen), so I roped my poor boyfriend into helping me install a patio. I particularly remember one evening, when I convinced him to go to Menard's with me, just to look at pavers. At about 10 that evening, we were unloading more than a ton of pavers and bags of sand into my driveway. He was less than happy about that situation.

 

I had the gravel delivered and rented a power compactor. He, my mom and I spent the majority of last year's Memorial Day weekend putting in the patio. (If this sounds familiar to you, I wrote a story about it for the features section this year.) And of course, I had to get patio furniture and an umbrella and ... you get the picture, don' t you?

 

Once the patio was finished, I found myself hosting gatherings I otherwise wouldn't have, because of the grill. I bought the fancy plastic cover made specifically for it, because it was too big to haul to the garage for the winter. And to top it off – I'm not even the regular grillmaster. When my boyfriend's at my house for dinner, he does the cooking. (Did I mention he's a saint?)

 

Don't get me wrong – I love the grill. I just think it's funny that it set off such a chain of events in my life last summer. Has anything similar ever happened to you?

 

By the way, if anyone needs sand ... I have plenty of bags left over.

 

Photos are by Robert K. O'Daniell and accompanied the original story about my patio last June.

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Mike Howie wrote on March 17, 2010 at 11:03 am
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Outdoor fridge? Don't you think you need one of those?

Meg Dickinson wrote on March 17, 2010 at 11:03 am
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Hmmm... good idea, but then I'd have to add on to the patio to make room for it. And wire the backyard for electricity. Maybe I could win one to get me started. Rob would love that!

Dan Corkery wrote on March 17, 2010 at 2:03 pm
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Meg, some day you will buy a big pickup, and then you'll realize that you need a new garage. And then when you try to build that new, 2-car, extended-length garage, the city tells you that you need to downsize the garage because your plans don't allow for enough setback. So you decide to seek a variance from the ZBA, which meas you have to buy a legal ad in the N-G and wait for a public hearing. And then you and the planning staff get into a snit because they recommend the ZBA reject your request. And at that point, you yell at the boyfriend, because he's the one who recommended an F-150 (because America builds the best full-size trucks) and talked you out of a little Ford Ranger (which is a Mazda in disguise). Yup, you have more adventures in front of you!

Meg Dickinson wrote on March 17, 2010 at 2:03 pm
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Haha, but you don't speak from experience or anything, do you, Dan?

Wenalway wrote on March 23, 2010 at 1:03 am

This was a fascinating tale, truly worthy of the time I spent skimming it. When do the novel and movie come out?