When thinking back through the years, trying to choose which of the many outdoor grilling experience was the absolute worst is no easy task. I’ve been grilling for most of my adult life and there have been countless incidents that range from mildly embarrassing to all out, never going to live them down, catastrophes. We’ve all had the occasional burnt offerings or hamburgers that weren’t seasoned just right, not everyone can claim to have rolled a full sized gas grill down a hill and into the Allegheny River.
It was a hot August day and a group of friends and co-workers and I were camping along the river. The plan was that a few people would take the boat upriver to the boat ramp and then fish down the river. When they got to our campsite, the mighty fishermen would of course have caught our dinner. Since I’m notoriously skeptical about the prowess of the mighty fishermen, I had hot dogs and hamburgers in reserve. In the meantime, those of us who stayed at the campsite decided to fish from shore while they were gone.
After a few hours of fishing (without much success) we decided it was time for lunch and started the grill. The fact that the grill was sitting very near the edge of a steep bank that led to the river probably wasn’t the best of ideas, but we were near a bend in the river and wanted to be able to see the fishing boat as they came in. It wasn’t long before we saw them come around the bend and from the look on their faces their luck wasn’t much better than ours. Since ours wasn’t the most considerate of groups, we began shouting taunts about the “mighty fishermen” coming home empty handed. That’s when everything went terribly awry.
Outdoor Grilling Burnt Offerings or Catastrophe
As I jeered along with the rest, my sandal got caught on a rock and I stumbled. As I steadied myself on the outer shelf of the grill it began to move. Not wanting to touch the hot area, I stepped back and it continued to roll……..end over end in slow motion all the way to the bottom and into the river. As it turns out, hot dogs and hamburgers float, who would have known? The group in the boat was VERY insensitive about my momentary lapse of grace, but with the help of a winch on one of the vehicles we got the grill back up the hill and in working order.
Whether it was sheer bad luck or Karma kicking in for teasing the fishermen in the boat, that was most definitely a low point in my outdoor grilling career.