The invitation had said 3pm. Paul arrived at 2.
Three hours later, and with barely a spark, Kevin was sweating.

The plan was to light it, make sure the coals were white hot (he’d read that somewhere) and then begin cooking. By the time people arrived, he’d be half way through the cook.

This would, Kev thought, have two benefits:

1) People could eat straight away.
2) Ladies would admire his amazing BBQ skills.

By 6.30pm everyone, except Paul, had left.
Reluctantly, Kevin sidled over to him and silently slid a slice of Double Pepperoni from the warm box.



This piece was submitted as part of Friday Fictioneers, hosted by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields. 1 photograph. 100 words. Often with over 100 people taking part.




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24 thoughts on “The BBQ

  1. Lighting a fire is a skill you have to acquire.. maybe that’s harder than the BBQ itself.. I like the comment that he had read it somewhere (a sure warning sign of imminent failure)

  2. Dee says:

    Oh dear a good BBQ is an acquired skill that Kev doesn’t seem to have, at least he was prepared with the Double Pepperoni!

  3. wmqcolby says:

    You know, Mister B., I have been lighting fires since I was a kid (we lived out in the country). This guy needs some lessons, definitely.

    Swell humor, dry, crisp and loaded with good stuff. You did great! Thank-you for this.

  4. This made me chuckle and reminded me of the time my graduate advisor decided to try to use a grill. He cooked up meat patties that resembled charcoal briquette and we eventually ordered pizza.

  5. A little splash of accelerant next time might just do the trick ;-). Good story.

  6. Maybe the wood was green and wet? Next party… call a caterer!

  7. The best laid plans! Good job.

  8. Sounds like the problems Bill used to have with charcoal. I recommend a gas grill. Can’t go wrong and women will still love you.


  9. Oh, how funny! Been to, and been hostess of, many BBQ’s like this.

  10. Dear Peter,

    At least there’s pizza. Cute story.



  11. elmowrites says:

    I like the way we’re in Kevin’s head for this – you can feel the stress mounting as the story progresses. And I liked the “he’d read that somewhere” bit, which conveys his inexperience beautifully.
    A couple of minor concrits in case you’re interested – first, in a piece this short I think stick to one version of the name, (either Kev or Kevin) and second, I was unclear about how Paul fit in. I couldn’t tell if he was early to help or if his earliness had piled on the pressure.
    Anyway, good stuff. I look forward to reading more from you.

    • MrBinks says:

      Thanks for the comments. I think you’re probably right about the Kev/Kevin, though I wanted to avoid repetition which is why I settled the way I did.

      Re: Paul, for me, was a bit of a know-it-all friend (hence him already having the pizza ready at the end. Once slotted in there for the kicker, it became tricky to work him in at the start but I wanted to highlight him rather than just have a random person appear at the end. Not 100% it worked flawlessly (as your comments prove!)

  12. Too funny, must admit I witnessed the described disaster too many times.

  13. When I first met my husband only six years ago he had never lit a fire before. We went to stay in a cottage with an open fire, which is where he first tried and we had to vacate the sitting room for 24 hours because of the amount of smoke!
    Loved your story.

  14. helenmidgley says:

    Obviously his ‘meat’ was not that appetising 😉

  15. Ankush says:

    The hunter’s skills 🙂

    Catch my story on

  16. Poor Kevin, I could feel his embarrassment. I hope he tries something more within his comfort zone next time he wants to impress!

  17. So glad he had a friend in Paul! I couldn’t bare to imagine him eating that pizza alone. Nice little story!

  18. Shandra says:

    Oh, a man and his BBQ.

  19. Peter, Funny ending. 😀 Poor guy. Maybe next time. Well written. 🙂 —Susan

  20. BrainRants says:

    The worst possible outcome of a bbq. This reminded me that I worry about this aspect every time I grill.

  21. shanx says:

    Loved the way you narrated it. esp. “he’d read that somewhere”. 🙂 Best Wishes.

  22. This takes me back to the first parties my ex-husband and I used to host. I once planned a Superbowl party around chili and then burned the chili. There was no salvaging it. I hid the pot in the oven and fed my guests what little chips and dips I had.

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