NOOOoooooooooo!


 

Timothy F. Lewis

TVWBB Olympian
I just looked out my window and saw my neighbor load up his Char Broil smoker with coal, douse it with lighter fluid and while flames were still spewing, he put the going together and closed it up like it was ready! Am I wrong to tell him he’s out of his tree? Or how do I open that conversation? Part of me simply wants to put my head down and shake it but, he’s just layering petroleum distillates into the inside of his smoker! I was thinking that I should simply gift him a chimney starter, that’s fairly subtle right?
 

John K BBQ

TVWBB Pro
I'd say if you're on good terms with your neighbor you could give him some pointers, but if you're not well acquainted then it'll be a more difficult conversation. Maybe take the "safety" angle with him? I'd try "did you know there is a safer way to do that?" and see where it goes. Maybe mention that you might give him your old chimney? Then get yourself a new one? Then again, maybe he's a pyromaniac and just likes to play with fire....

I like fire pits and fire building, but using lighter fluid is just archaic. There are so many better ways to build fires now.
 

Brad Olson

TVWBB Emerald Member
I'd say if you're on good terms with your neighbor you could give him some pointers, but if you're not well acquainted then it'll be a more difficult conversation.
To continue in this direction, is he a new neighbor? How well do you know him?

Maybe invite him over for a beverage right about the time you're firing up some charcoal, and work the chimney concept into the conversation. And offer to let him borrow yours sometime, without ever mentioning that you know he uses lighter fluid.
 

Timothy F. Lewis

TVWBB Olympian
I'd say if you're on good terms with your neighbor you could give him some pointers, but if you're not well acquainted then it'll be a more difficult conversation. Maybe take the "safety" angle with him? I'd try "did you know there is a safer way to do that?" and see where it goes. Maybe mention that you might give him your old chimney? Then get yourself a new one? Then again, maybe he's a pyromaniac and just likes to play with fire....

I like fire pits and fire building, but using lighter fluid is just archaic. There are so many better ways to build fires now.
Playing with fire is one thing, I light the hillbilly hearth with a torch and maybe some Boy Scout excellerant, not for a cooking fire ever anymore. I’m kind of leaning toward the “Share the old chimney” idea. Just came to the realization that my “backup” (4th) chimney is a Char Broil! I will just let that appear on their deck with a “thought this might be a good addition to the arsenal” kind of note.

Dan, “What we have here is, failure to communicate.” Strother Martin’s character (Boss/Captain) one of my favorite of his parts!
 
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Timothy F. Lewis

TVWBB Olympian
To continue in this direction, is he a new neighbor? How well do you know him?

Maybe invite him over for a beverage right about the time you're firing up some charcoal, and work the chimney concept into the conversation. And offer to let him borrow yours sometime, without ever mentioning that you know he uses lighter fluid.
He is relatively new, he is being support for his sister while she is navigating cancer treatments. I don’t want to be the nosy neighbor that has a better way to do everything. I had loaned them my patio heater for a Halloween party last year and they returned it not working, consequently, I’m reluctant to stick my nose in their business.
Given the need for social distancing and declining weather conditions, a friendly cocktail may not be the easiest thing but, I will think about that. Thanks Brad. Supposed to be sunny tomorrow afternoon. I will be doing some additional tweaking to the “Smoker Cabaña” tomorrow so, I will be outside!
 
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Brad Olson

TVWBB Emerald Member
He is relatively new, he is being support for his sister while she is navigating cancer treatments.
Ordinarily I'd say that this is a great opportunity to cook for them and get him in on the process from square one, but she's obviously at risk. Still, I'd try for a personal interaction over leaving a note if it's at all possible, but that's just me.
 

Phil Perrin

TVWBB Hall of Fame
I had a neighbor who got a little charcoal grill to burn some burgers and chicken on.
I tried to get her to use a chimney, but she stated that her daddy always used lighter fluid and so would she!
Not gonna argue with daddy!!
 
When I was a kid, I won the local 4-H chicken-q contest two years in a row. We were trained to build the fire with charcoal inside a coffee can with the bottom cut out (before commercial chimney starters were invented) and the briquettes doused in lighter fluid. You had to perch the can on top of a few briquettes.

Turned out great, but I haven’t owned lighter fluid in many years. A few years from now, folks may recoil in horror at the BBQ methods we use today. “Those idiots used the Minion method and found commercial charcoal acceptable.”
 

Timothy F. Lewis

TVWBB Olympian
Well, I had a chat with the neighbor, that was either the first or second time he had fired her smoker so, pure rookie.
She has since realized the error of her ways, has a huge bag of “Cowboy Briquettes” a chimney starter and has just inherited a slightly dinged (small dent) 22” kettle! She is quite excited about it and I gave her a TVWBB card so, she may be a new member soon! I have a spare set of older Weber baskets that I think I should gift her.
She really doesn’t know a lot about what she is doing so, I offered to answer any quick questions she/they may have.
 

Michael Richards

TVWBB Wizard
Well, I had a chat with the neighbor, that was either the first or second time he had fired her smoker so, pure rookie.
She has since realized the error of her ways, has a huge bag of “Cowboy Briquettes” a chimney starter and has just inherited a slightly dinged (small dent) 22” kettle! She is quite excited about it and I gave her a TVWBB card so, she may be a new member soon! I have a spare set of older Weber baskets that I think I should gift her.
She really doesn’t know a lot about what she is doing so, I offered to answer any quick questions she/they may have.
We moved into our new house a year ago and we now live across from a three story apartment building. Early spring we started to notice a older guy on the second story bacony lighting his Weber Smoky Joe with KBB and a LOT of Light fluid. He would literally use the lid has a shield to fend off the ragging fire. My wife and kids though this was the funnies thing in the world. After about a month of this act, I got a knock on the door, it was this same gentleman's ex-wife asking if I could help them move some furniture. I did and I took this time to asking him about his fire starting habits. He said it is all I have ever done and "all I got". So the next time I went to the BBQ store I picked him up a new small Weber Chimney (Only 6 bucks) and when I told them what I was doing they through a box of Weber cubes in for free for him. I gave them to him and for a while I watched him use it. However, we have watched his health get worse over this same time, and he is not BBQing anymore. So now when I am planning to BBQ and I see him out, I ask him if he wants some BBQ. This pass Saturday when I made Beef Short Ribs I also smoke chicken breast and I smoked an extra one for him. He told me the softness and the dry rub on the exterior of the chicken was really good/easy on his stomach.
 
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