Role reversal

We grilled out over the weekend, burgers and a veggie medley. After I had finished mixing the burger ingredients and forming the meat into patties, Greg asked, “Are we grilling these?” But he asked it in a really pained way, as he always does lately when we’re grilling. You would think that I had just asked him to replace the roof of our house all by himself.

I offered to grill the food instead and told him that he could stay in the kitchen to make the vinaigrette for the veggies and slice up some fruit. I told him that I was tired of being in the kitchen. He was lucky, always hanging out on our covered back porch watching the birds fly about. Greg warned me that the grill is hot. I reminded him that I’ve grilled things many times when he hasn’t been home.

I placed the burgers on the grill, and then brought out the veggies that Greg had seasoned. I had to move the burgers over a little to fit the veggie basket on the grill, but they hadn’t cooked enough yet to hold together, and they crumbled into pieces. Great. Now Greg was going to think I was an incompetent girl and I’d be banished back to the kitchen.

I started to dump the veggies into the basket on the grill. If had been standing any closer, I would have lost my eyebrows. I peered into the bowl at the remaining veggies. Greg had bathed them in oil. Or maybe I should say drowned. Meanwhile, the veggies already on the grill were being smoked by flames about a foot high (this is on a gas grill, mind you). Greg could see the flames and smoke from the kitchen and came out to check on me.

“How much oil did you put on these things?” I ask, exasperated. “Greg, you only need a tiny bit of oil.”

We decide that our job switch has been an epic disaster and agree to trade off.

A few minutes later, Greg carries the burgers and blackened veggies into the house. Abe follows him in. And there’s something wrong with Abe’s face. His beard is all slicked down. I tell Greg that Abe looks like some sort of sleazy greaser who’s going out cruising for chicks, not unlike some of the guys we’ve just been watching on the Sopranos.

“You mean he looks like a guy named Romeo?” Greg asks. (Romeo was the name Abe had when we adopted him.)

“Exactly,” I say.

Greg says that Abe really likes olive oil. And he knows this because he dumped some of the oil from the veggies into our yard, and Abe ran to the spot to lick it up. So now we’re back to me in the kitchen, Greg watching the grill and Romeo looking for ladies.