The hamburgers My Darling B bought for our first cookout of the season were the size of manhole covers and were at least eighty-five percent fat, which means that before I could finish slapping all eight of them on the grill they erupted into the biggest grease fire we’ve ever seen. I had to keep the cover on the Weber when I wasn’t actively flipping them, and when I did take the cover off, I could flip two, maybe three before the flames forced me to clamp the cover down over the grill again to smother the conflagration that reared up high enough to reach my face. This is not hyperbole. At one point, My Darling B came to the door to ask if there was anything she could do to help. She didn’t have a fire extinguisher so I said no, but I thought it was amusing that the flames were so impressively aggressive they were drawing a crowd. She told me after that she and Tim had been watching from the window.

When I finished cooking them, the manhole-sized patties had shrunk to a little smaller than a beer coaster. We’re probably not getting those again.

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