By Doug De Graffenried

Did you ever have one of those moments?

The other evening, I decided that supper would include steaks. I did the early morning preparation for the late afternoon cooking ritual. Those steaks were well prepped.

The other part of the steak ritual involves the grill. I have one of the wood pellet grills. It is spiffy. My cooking has improved. Once upon a time, hamburgers that I grilled were not palatable and later used as official hockey pucks. I’m much better now. The wood pellet grill needs several minutes to warm up to steak temperature. It gets very hot but helps me avoid hockey puck cooking accidents.

The cover came off. I checked the inside of the grill. Verified the nice little drip bucket would have adequate room for drippings. The wood pellets were checked and determined to be adequate. 

I reached around back to turn the grill on. Nothing! The switch glows orange when the grill is on. This switch was dark. I checked the plug, after all I had wired it with my redneck electrician method of designing an outdoor circuit. The GCFI plug was tested and verified to be working. It has a nice green light showing it’s functioning.

Never trusting the one outlet, I grabbed an extension cord and plugged everything into the other GCFI outdoor outlet. Nothing! Tried a couple of other outlets inside the shed. Nothing!

In my rapidly filling up mind, I decided the switch had gone bad. The steaks were begging to be cooked, so I reverted to the broiler inside. The steaks were marvelous. I was a little bummed about the grill though. It is not that old.

After the sumptuous steak supper, I grabbed the manual that came with the grill and turned to the troubleshooting chapter. Nothing! The switch would not light up. The grill would not come on, although clearly my redneck circuits were supplying power to the outlets.

I resolved to call and check the warranty. I walked back outside to put the cover on the grill and roll up the extension cord. That’s when I learned that I’m a dumb donkey. OK, I’m the other thing, but I can’t use that language in this family friendly publication.

The cord for the grill not only plugs into the wall, but it also plugs into the grill. The end of the cord plugged into the grill had worked its way loose. When I unplugged the grill cord from the extension cord, the other end fell to the ground.

I had to confess my stupidity. I resolved to check that end of the cord each time. But here’s the deal, I should have thought of it. Who would have thought that the other end of a power cord could come loose from where it plugged into the grill? The answer is, just about everyone!

In a conversation last week, a person said, “I don’t feel like I’m connecting with God very well these days.” I know who is unplugged. When God seems distant, you need to check both ends of the spiritual connection. If you don’t know about the two directions of a spiritual connection, come see me on Sunday, I’ll explain it to you. We might have steak!