The Art Of BBQ Hopping
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The Art Of BBQ Hopping

Summer traditions?

The Art Of BBQ Hopping

Ever have more than one BBQ to attend? Don't get overwhelmed. These are the dos and don'ts to BBQ hop successfully..

Summer... the time for chilling and relaxing at the beach, having picnics, maybe going to an amusement park, or catch lightning bugs. It's the time to enjoy yourself without having to be stressed out from work or school. It's also the time for barbecues! Delicious burgers, tasty hot dogs, succulent chicken, and mouthwatering ribs, the list goes on and on. BBQs are not only a great way to try and show off your cooking and grilling skills, but also for getting together with family and friends. They're great for catching up with old relatives you haven't seen in a year, and the friends you have been dying to see since you returned from college.

Everyone loves to have BBQs! They're the best type of parties and so you end up getting invited to four in one day! You're probably asking yourself how you can do it all -- maybe it's better to just choose one.  Don't fret, there's a way you can go to all four without upsetting the hosts. You just have to follow these simple dos and don'ts of BBQ hopping. 

The Dos

1. The first and most important rule is to make sure you establish staggered start times. The reason for this, is that it makes it easier to figure out which party starts first and which one starts last. Then, you can establish a schedule for when you leaving and when you should arrive. If you don't, you'll probably wind up spending two and a half hours at one party, and 30 minutes at another. Trust me on this first rule.   

2. The 60 minute rule. Very simple rule. Make your rounds at the party speaking with everyone you know and making more friends -- but for no more than an hour. After the hour is up, you leave and go to the next party. My whole family can vouch for this rule because we do it all the time if we have more than two parties a day.     

3. Take an out of town guest, if possible. This is a great idea, because then you can blame your early departure on your guest. Say something like, "Sorry, Jen, my friend Pete is only in town until tomorrow and he has family here so we have to see them before he leaves." It works every time. You could even play the, I'm sick card, if necessary. Just make it believable!     

4. Dress with minimal clothes and say you need to leave because it's getting chilly. My mom uses this one every time. It works and you should always wear something memorable so that everyone knows you attended. Nothing Lady Gaga like, but definitely an outfit that will get you cold and noticed.      

5. Fake a call and, while taking the call, walk away mouthing an apology that you need to leave ASAP. This is one you need to break out the acting skills for. It has to be very believable. If it isn't, the host will definitely try to make an excuse for you to stay. Don't screw it up.     

The Don'ts:      

1. Do not, I repeat  do not just eat and leave. That is probably the rudest action someone can do. It makes the host feel like you only came for the food. You did, but the host doesn't have to know that! If you're going to eat, then have little snacks like chips and dips. 

2. Don't say you're not hungry. I made the mistake of doing that one time, and the host got upset. It makes you feel totally awkward the entire time you're there. It makes them feel like they're a terrible cook. Eat something little and compliment the chef and just divert the situation. Remember, you only have an hour.     

3. Never go empty handed! This is kind of a rule for any type of party. It's just a sign of endearment and thought. Yes, I didn't slave over a hot stove preparing food the night before, but I did think about you and how much you love this cake, so here's to you my friend!       

4. Don't play favorites when it comes to going to and from different parties. I don't care if he or she's your best friend. You'll probably see her tomorrow and it's just rude to keep the other parties hanging.      

5. Don't stay with one group. Make all your rounds at the party -- meaning, talk to everyone you know. Make sure to allow who ever you're talking with to actually speak. That way, they know you were there and that you held a conversation. Also, it makes them feel good when you listen to them and their many problems.

6. The last, and most important rule of the don'ts, is never be late. If you are late, you'll screw up the whole 60-minute rule and your BBQ hopping will be a complete mess. Being on time is not only a work and school thing, but a party thing, too. Think of it as your job, or like getting to class on time.

Be prepared and ready to follow these dos; know and avoid the don'ts. Now you know the fine art of BBQ hopping. Follow and memorize these dos and don'ts  like they are the holy bible. They work. Have fun at all theBBQs and have a wonderful remainder of the summer.  Toodles!

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