Sunday, May 20, 2018
So here we are again. Me with my computer and you reading this article wondering, "What in the world is wrong with that guy?" A lot has been going on since we last met. I have been working on yet another federal grant, and for anyone wondering, yes they are painful. I also have taken the time to pull the trigger and purchase myself a Lang 48" Patio Model Smoker. That's right boys and girls! I actually spent money on a real smoker and not bodged together something on my own. Granted, the Frankensmoker Mk. 3.2 served me well for many years, and if it weren't for a 'slight miscalculation' on my part, I'd still be using it. Alas, time waits for no man. While I'm not a father and have been called a 'mother' on many occasions, I felt it was high time for me to treat myself to something that didn't involve 23 trips to Lowe's, profanity that would make a sailor blush, numerous bandages, and many long hours of wondering, "Why didn't that fit right?" What better time to do that than Father's Day. My little baby is currently in gestation for the next 5-6 weeks. I won't lie, I'm a bit excited about my new little one. Will I get back into competitions.....probably not. Will I try to do more cooking? Probably yes. I've been researching the Lang smoker for quite some time now. Yes, I understand a stick burner isn't exactly 'fire and forget', but I still look forward to that wood smoked flavor. I've always liked the theory of a reverse flow versus a direct flow smoker. Being the nerd that I am, I've been doing comparison research, and I believe the Lang is the best choice for me. Maybe not for you, but I'm the one at the keyboard so there's that. I'm also giving my pellet smoker (Igor Mk. 1.1) to my father-in-law since my lovely wife has 'gently suggested' that I need to make some room in the garage. I'm sure I'm the only one who has ever had to have that discussion. I'll keep my juice can since it takes so little room. Kind of makes me worry if we had kids. Can you get to the point you have too many, and you have to get rid of the biggest one? Same principle right? Probably not. I'm not even good at feeding fish much less a totally dependent human being. Anyway, I've enlisted my good friend Forrest Dilmore to teach me the ways of the Lang. He has one for sale you know. I also have been following the Memphis in May BBQ contest. Congrats to The Shed for winning it all. I've had the pleasure of dining there. Pretty good BBQ if I do say so. I heard Melissa Cookston on The BBQ Central Show, and I was totally mesmerized by the fact she is working on breeding her own breed of hogs just for doing whole hog competitions. I don't care if she didn't win the whole hog part, that folks is dedication pure and simple. I'm doing good to make sure it is actually pork I'm cooking and not some mutant raccoon, but that's just me. Greg Rempe did a great interview, and he makes my commutes on Tuesday and Wednesday a bit more tolerable. I also believe he is a father of three. With that, I salute all of you fathers out there. It can't be easy to do one of the toughest jobs in the world. I still remember my dad showing up at baseball practice, and he and mom sitting behind home plate each and every game. Did I give him fits? Of course I did. I was his son, and I was supposed to do that. At least, that's my story and I'm sticking with it. I'm thankful to still have him, my grandfather, a great brother, a wonderful father-in-law, and a rockin' brother-in-law. All of which are great fathers, and they seem to tolerate me....mostly. Anyway, y'all take care and give your old man a break. After all, Father's Day comes around only once a year. Riley says, "Hello and shut the door. What are we trying to do....air condition the whole neighborhood?"