Tao & The Art of Backyard Living Pt1

Tao & The Art of Backyard Living Pt1

I get asked a lot, ” What does the Flame stand for, in Fin and Flame?”. There is only one Hobby outside of family, that encompasses my time as much as Fishing Lures and its History, and that is cooking, grilling & smoking call it what you may. While the aforementioned titles or type sets illicit preconceived notions of how each should be done or accomplished, one thing you have to have before you do any,  “Flame”.

Tao and The Art of Back Yard Living Part I 

How I Met the Her, The Big Green Egg That is………

I was a young green horn selling and designing computer networks back in the hay day before the internet pop mid 90s….Was sitting in my back office cube, lights dim (as I always undid one of the two elongated fluorescent  bulbs), …1970s Sears Brown Faux wood grained radio with a loudness knob instead of volume that I had found in the warehouse. I was playing a little John Coletrain, and Thelonious Monk from the local college FM broadcast around 7 am. Gathering my thoughts & getting my head straight, having a large black cup of coffee….

It was two decades ago (I feel old saying that), I Had been married only 8 months, just bought my first house, was still semi naive although I had been through college and military.  Just like anyone in their mid 20’s, I Thought I knew what was good in life and certainly thought I knew how and what what tasted good…

I heard the boss talking to someone, as they walked up the hall towards my cube, it was a new sales guy. My Boss Introduced me to him, and he showed him to his new cube across from mine. After the boss departed to let him get set, he hollered across the cube,  “Man its pretty early for the monk… but I like it…” Alas, he forgot about straightening his new desk he grabbed his coffee, and came over to the corner office with this Giant Faded 7-11 cup, that would come to define him and the “position” to which I will refer later. He Introduced himself again, and looked around my office. It was covered in Jerry Garcia Ties, many of which were hanging off the bill of a 8″ mounted sword fish which coincidentally I had also found in the warehouse and re-purposed as well. 4 Large Saltwater Game rods and reels for decoration leaning against an overflowing bookcase filled with computer product related material.  He looked at me and said,  “I normally I wouldn’t say this but I got a feeling you and I will become very good friends.

Within minutes our conversation moved across myriad topics, music, family, towards the inevitable….Food…He said do you like to cook out? I replied,  “Sure,  I just in fact had bought a new gas grill this last weekend, and spent 8 hours putting it together”….In truth it took so long to put it together, I only had time to burn some hot dogs on it before the nights end….

He looked at me with the compassion of a older brother, mentor and said (Again this is within 10 minutes of us meeting) He said “Man, if there is one thing in life I could tell you, and you would listen and trust me. Even though we just met, have I got something for you….. I know we just met and you dont know me from adam, but if you trust me Ill share with you one of the best things Ive learned in life..(I really thought I was going to get sold some Amway product, or something of the ilk) He exclaimed with dead certainty and seriousness “You need to go buy a Big Green Egg”…….

WTH is an egg I said?…Oh Ho Ho  he said, with a french twist and if he had had a mustache I could envision him twisting the ends of which while he said it. He said with a smile as big and true as a Child’s at Christmas. The glean in his eye and poise in his stance as if he had been walking in the garden of Eden. Tim followed up as he leaneed forward to say “It is a ancient oriental form of cooking, second to none, based on the simple principle of air flow. Air comes in the bottom and air flows out the top. The thick ceramic walls creating a gradient and convection style of heat reflecting off it’s clay walls…

WOW, sounds simple, and cool too… The Tao of outdoor cooking ran through my head…As he continued to describe the history and the various makers through the years, I was brought deeper into the fold. He said, have you ever had chicken pop in your mouth from being so juicy, nervously I said no….Have you ever had a steak that actually grew in size from the juices rather than shrivel up into a jerky like state….No…But now I’m hooked, and Im hungry and he ought to be selling George Foreman grills on TV he was that convincing!…

We forgot about selling, work, and continued to talk for hours, covering our pasts, pets, family, music, hockey, hobbies. More and more about this Big Green Egg until finally lunch came around…

I told him man I just bought a $400 grill last weekend…My wife would kill me if I bought something new. He said why dont you and your wife come over tonight, we will have a few beers on the deck, listen to some tunes, let the she wolfs meet and get to know each other, and I will show you the Big Green Egg…

Little did I know that day, I would make what was to be a life long best friend, and be told one of the most wonderful things to use in enjoying life, the Big Green Egg.

That day on our way home, as my wife and I worked together, I had told her of the new sales guy, or commonalities, his invitation and of course the big green egg and his statement of guarantee.

Continued in Part II….Reload and relax

Big Green Egg

Big Green Egg

2017-05-06T21:05:39+00:00 May 6th, 2017|Comments Off on Tao & The Art of Backyard Living Pt1