This past Sunday, I happened to bump into one of my younger neighbors and, after exchanging pleasantries, I blurted out, "Hot enough for you?" As soon as the question left my mouth, I immediately regretted asking it as I knew full well that this particular neighbor is a not only a die-hard vegan and a card-carrying tree-hugger, but also a devout disciple of the religion of pending apocalyptic climate change. "Better get used to it...", my friend replied, "Climate change is a global matter. The planet is warming because of the growing level of greenhouse gas emissions from your activities. If this trend continues, truly catastrophic consequences are likely to ensure from rising sea levels, scarcity of fresh water, increased numbers of more powerful storms and more heat waves. It is a slow-moving civilization-ending cataclysm of your making!"
Recognizing that my friend's flushed face and waving hands were a fairly good indication of a pending and loud polemic regarding my alleged abuses of the planet, I tried to tone the rhetoric down a notch by stating that perhaps we could simply recognize that, as we are now entering the "dog days" of summer, this kind of heat should be neither unexpected nor overly worrisome. Yeah, that worked really well!
Bordering on apoplexy, my friend managed to blurt out, "Earth does not belong to us. We belong to the earth and the earth is dying. You are a murderer!" Realizing that perhaps a strategic retreat was my best course of action, I wished my friend farewell and then walked away singing the words to Irving Berlin's 1933 song "Heat Wave" just loud enough to be heard by my friend, "We're having a heat wave, a tropical heat wave, the temperature's rising, It isn't surprising, she certainly can can-can. She started a heat wave, by letting her seat wave in such a way that the customers say that she certainly can can-can."
And speaking of tropical heat waves and such, be sure to bring your family and friends and enjoy yet another VFW Post BBQ on Saturday, July 14, replete with the requisite hot dogs, hamburgers, beverages, a great view of the bay and the Manhattan skyline and, did I forget to mention? A fabulous pig roast!
Now before you start thinking to yourself “C'mon, it’s just another BBQ,” consider the following. A pig roast or “hog cooking” as it is often referred to, is an ancient tribal ritual practiced around the world. Although around these parts the words alone invoke casual summertime pleasure (the taste of ice cold draft beer, the smell of wafting smoke infused with the aroma of cooking pork, the comfortable feel of a soon to be greasy t-shirt, the ubiquitous summertime sound of flip-flops, the constant (and annoying) questions of “is it ready yet?” etc.), they tend to overshadow the fact that, in reality, a pig roast is an elaborate community affair requiring ingenuity and copious amounts of elbow grease.
No, this is certainly not just another BBQ, it’s a PIG ROAST, a veritable sensory overload of pork gone hog wild!
Think about it…you have to dig the pit days before the roast - no easy feat in itself, fire it up in the wee hours on the morning of the roast to get the stones and charcoal hot without burning the block down, dress and wrap the pig and put it on the hot coals without causing burns to yourself or others, bury the pig with insulating dirt and then let it cook low and slow for…well... the pig will be ready when the pig is ready. Remember, the pig is in control, not you…the pig abides! Of course, then there is the fun part. You dig up the pig and eat it!
Of course, in addition to the roast pig, there will be the usual BBQ staples of cold beverages, hot dogs, and hamburgers with all the fixings for those of you who may be too timid to sample a recently unburied cooked dead pig. And for all you vegetarians and vegans out there, we will also have the requisite rabbit food - corn, salad, and watermelon, but, c’mon…why bother? It’s $20 for adults, $10 for children and tykes 5 and under can sneak in free! All are welcome. Don’t miss it! As always, all proceeds will go to benefit our veterans.
If you have never enjoyed roast pig before, stop by the V.F.W. in Broad Channel between 2 p.m. and 6 p.m. on Saturday, July 14, and I can guarantee that you are in for a special treat!
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