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Monday, July 02, 2012

Cookout 101: The 20 Things Yo Mama Forgot to Tell You

This is not an indictment on your mothers, just chill. Don't look at me crazy because I call it a cookout and not a bar-b-que. How many times I gotta tell ya'll I'm Southern? I posted this last year around Memorial Day but I decided to remix and repost it for July 4th. *Harlem Shake*

For those unfamiliar with this practice, a cookout is an event during which people who enjoy each other's company gather together and devour an ample supply of grilled swine, beef and chicken with all the fixins. You are also likely to find self-proclaimed "grill masters" and people who are serious about making great tasting food. 

Peep these 20 rules and share em with your friends. 
20. IF you arrived empty handed and have NOT contributed in any way you CAN'T have an opinion. If you arrived on time and didn't contribute your punctual ass can't have an opinion either. You have no credibility. You are not allowed to have an opinion about anything regarding the cookout. Ignore this rule and you won't ever be invited to another cookout. 

19. The host is responsible for making sure the food is cooked on time. If your guests were told to arrive at 4pm but the meat won't be ready until 5:30pm, its a problem.  If you didn't tell people it would be a vegan bar-b-que, I suggest you have the meat ready when the carnivores arrive. Don't be the one grilling and let me see you eating. 

18. Keep the outfits simple. If you think you need a bullet proof vest, stay home. Don't wear stiletto heels either. Suits are off limits. Don't wear all white.  If you are the couple who loves to dress alike, don't wear neon plaid. 

17. Don't park in the driveway 1st knowing u have to leave early. If you are one of the people who arrives a little early to make yourself feel better for leaving early, park on the street so you can make a clean break. Don't inconvenience other people. This leads me to...

16. The host is responsible for figuring out the parking. Don't act surprised when people ask you where to park. If you live in an area where only metered parking is available, warn your guests in advance. 

15. Even if the cookout is also a potluck, the host is  responsible for the fundamentals. Hosts should plan to provide all "staples." You should have food and drinks ready just in case people forget something or your aunt brings the  off brand cola. 

14. Be honest about the food. Its ok if your signature dish didn't come out as expected. Its NOT ok for you FAIL to tell folks about your salty rice or that this is the 1st time you made the dish a new way. Don't get creative with your macaroni and cheese. 

13. If you know the festivities are outside, break out the extra strength deodorant. We are family but nobody likes smelly people. Don't torture people with your B.O. 

12. The host is responsible for WHO gets an invite. The focus should be on family members who are recently divorced and people currently involved in drama. Nothing ruins a good vibe like a nasty argument. 

11. Tell someone if they have something in their teeth! If someone has an entire conversation with you and they don' t tell you about that cracked pepper in your teeth, then they are not your friend.  Be a friend

10. DON'T be the last person there and the first person to get a plate. If you arrived just in time to hear the announcement for everyone to form a line you have to let EVERYBODY skip you.   

9. Don't be ashamed to be the 1st person in line for your plate.  Unless you came last. People respect you for owning your hunger and not being ashamed to admit it. Me? I'm judging you though. *giggles*

8. WARN EVERYONE if you plan to bring your new boo thang to the cookout. Failing to do so will result in blank stares. Dont be offended if you are the new boo and people compare you to the old boo. If you know your family is critical of new people, warn your new boo-thang and give your family notice that it will be you +1. If you are the new boo, you better come with your A game!! 

7. A host should KNOW the hosting limits of their space. Don't invite 30 people to your home knowing all you have is a 2 love seats and a rocking chair. If you plan to invite black people but you don't have a table suitable for playing spades, tonk and domino, fix that ASAP. If your toilet or AC is broken, relocate or cancel the cookout. 

6. NEVER insist on making a dish. If no one can vouch for your food, you're responsible for cups. NEWSFLASH: If you are known for having a nasty house, no one will eat your food. If you leave with your dish untouched, your sh*t was nasty. After you bring a nasty dish, you have to wait 2 more cookouts before you can volunteer to bring anything edible.   
5. Don't be *that* guy/girl. Cookouts are for the masses. If you want your food made a certain way, make it yourself. I refuse to eat baked beans without bacon in them because you just gave up pork. If you don't eat watermelon, nobody gives a damn. 

4. Don't be a lazy host! Clean your house. Offer to serve people. Put the "big" tv in the main room. If your biggest tv is 23 inches, I don't know what to tell ya. 
3. Don't touch the music. Old people don't wanna hear Gucci Mane or 2Chainz. Don't play "DJ" knowing you don't have cookout music. Also, aspiring musicians MUST get a majority vote before playing their music. Nobody wants to see you "twerk."  
2. Do NOT bring your bad ass kids and leave them in the hands of unsuspecting guests. If you are gone for longer than an hour, you may return to find a Child Protective Services abandonment investigation. 
1. Don't get pissy when its time to start taking pictures. Mattafack, come prepared to take at least one "candid" photo of you eating and one group photo. 

BONUS: If you don't know how to do signature dances (i.e. electric slide, cha cha slide, the wobble, etc) get your ass in the back until you catch on

Did I miss any rules? 

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