Friday, August 5, 2011

How to Not Light A Gas Grill

Here's a fun story from last weekend.

You know how a group of men and women fully versed in the arts of cooking and eating meat can usually start up a device for the cooking part of that process? Well it doesn't work so well on an unfamiliar grill. It happened on Jersey Shore; they set charcoal aflame in a gas grill. Nearly blew up the house.

This go around? Well, there was a time my dad burned off both his eyebrows using too much starter fluid, so let's just say I'm still the safer grill master at this age. Yes, I didn't quite burn off any hair, but my face felt the heat and I certainly had to check that I kept my sweet, trans-eyebrow Bong Villain scar.

For reference, this is what a gas grill's knob layout generally looks like:

You can adjust the flow of gas to adjust flame height and heat. It's very simple. The Ignition is also very clearly marked by a big scary red button. Like all things that explode.

The trick is, the ignition won't actually light unless the one starting burner (usually farthest away from you for obvious reasons) is turned to it's highest setting, marked by this little guy:

Little lightning bolts on electrically-sparked gas tanks. It's how Jaws ended, I think.

Here's the important bit:

When three of you are fidgeting with the burner knobs for a solid five minutes trying to get the lighter working, it's best to let the airspace above the grill air out a bit before cranking the gas up and igniting it all. Otherwise you get kind of a small Hindenburg event. Nothing major, but kind of yeah, a pretty decent sized fireball.

You also really scare the lady of the house, whose dad usually does all the grilling.

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