As the season turns, the grill stays hot.
The leaves outside my bedroom have started turning red and the air no longer smells green, the kind of scent of freshly mown grass.
I left open the window as I slept the other night when temperature descended into the 40s, sinking the thermostat to 62. I don't care. I have blankets. Additional T-shirts. And maybe some shots of Dr. McGillicuddy's Mentholmint Schnapps.
But I must grill.
Tuesday night, after I left abruptly from a local watering hole because the asshole next to me used the N-word as adjective, adverb and noun, I decided to grill out during the week -- a rarity for me.
It was worth any darkness, cold temperature and grogginess in the morning.
With the help of a local Bavarian-trained chef, I modified a Thomas Keller recipe for roast chicken. The latter had me squeeze fresh lemons over the chicken carcass and then shove the lemon husks into the cavity along with rosemary sprigs. I used the last of rosemary growing on my deck. But Max, a retired chef who somehow found his way from Bavaria to northern Wisconsin, suggested I add fresh parsley and some onion. He told me this while I polished off red cabbage, fresh sauerkraut and spatzel he made for Oktoberfest here.
It was beautiful. The vibrant mixture of lemon and rosemary -- I'd eat a shoe stuffed thusly -- were balanced by the earthiness I love of onions and parsley.
A lovely little evening, along with half a bottle of Wente Chardonnay, soothed the stress of Tuesday's deadline and the asshole at the bar. (Note to self: "Asshole at the Bar" is a great autobiography title.)
After I called him a bigot and a racist, and then left, he has not returned to my watering hole.
Peace unto Ukraine and peace and a whole roast of chicken on the grill unto you my brothers and sisters.