a few weeks to go, i had not been invited to a 4th of july bbq. a quick check with the people most likely to have a bbq to invite me to confirmed that we were on our own.

so here we are.

(many people were coming and going to alternative bbqs, as it turned out. i realized later that, if i had been smarter, i would have thrown a 5th of july bbq instead: everyone would be going off to pollinate their other 4th of july bbqs, talking about "that crazy bbq some madman has scheduled for tomorrow", "can you believe it?!", and of course there would be no conflicts because everyone planned to be relaxing that day anyway. there i would be, yukking it up with a cigar and a stars-and-stripes sash; a monopoly on grilling, a self-styled "mayor of the 5th", the master of ceremonies turning people away from the over-capacity gala. this diabolical plan came too late and now i have a year to wonder about what could have been..)

anyway, so here we are. now, the photo above maybe be eerily reminiscent of previous bbqs we've hosted (i do love the grill-shot), but at the time i was just marveling at the variety. usually masonic bbqs are frozen-patties-and-buns affair; above we have corn! sausages!? fish skewers?!! we also had cornbread, chicken skewers, bakesale betty cookies, and other goodies: thank you to all who brought this weird stuff.

i'd like to thank steve and scott for manning the grill, not entirely by their choice ("hold this and watch the grill"), for most of the afternoon.

i caught steve nonchalantly performing something he must have done thousands of times but had never occurred to me -- the innovative cheese-folding technique seen above.

this guy could have been the douche-baggiest guy ever [he was far from it] and you still would have loved him: best shirt ever.

mellie showed up with some awesome cupcakes. as usual when she grabs the camera, i discover several delightful self-portraits the next day..

kyla (welcome back!) and sis play beer pong and win! (so fast was her throw that i couldn't catch the ball on camera..)

"tom green" scott and i, wiping ourselves off after a loss (i think?)

given enough time and drink, the temporary "geek tatoos" allie gave me were sure to be ransacked. (in fact, a similar thing happened with the "librarian tattos" discovered at mel's last party..) here we see mellie has chosen the popular "game over" design, instead of the far more esoteric "".