Saturday, July 05, 2008

Better Living Through Applied Rocket Science

Lesson #12: How to light a charcoal grill

Yesterday being Independence Day, a national holiday dedicated to setting off cheaply made Chinese fireworks while consuming large quantities of American-made intoxicating beverages, we here at the Institute for Inadequately Funded Research determined that the only fitting way to light the barbecue grill preparatory to cooking dinner was through the use of a Pyrotechnically Enhanced Charcoal Ignition Device (PECID). However, a certain Nervous Nellie on the institute's Board of Directors, citing certain unfortunate minor incidents in prior years, insisted that we conduct a static test first, before deploying the latest PECID in conjunction with a fully fueled and operational cooking vessel.

Accordingly, we first obtained an obsolete "kettle" type barbecue grill, which we then retrofitted with the prototype PECID Mk. VII (Improved Model) and positioned securely on Pad 39A.

Always remember, Safety First! When conducting experiments of this nature, remember that it is always necessary to wear the appropriate protective clothing!

However, repeatedly saying, "Luke, I am your father," or, "Don't be so proud of this technological terror you have created," is, in most situations, not even slightly necessary.

T minus 15 seconds: Commence primary ignition sequence.

T minus 5 seconds: All personnel have retreated to a safe distance. All systems are go.

T Zero: We have ignition...

T plus 0.15 seconds: AND WE HAVE LIFTOFF!

T plus 5 seconds:

"Y'know honey, perhaps that was just a little excessive..."

URGENT UPDATE: You've read the post! Now see the movie!

The amazingly talented Vidad MaGoodn has taken the original raw video and produced — well, it just has to be seen to be believed, because it can't adequately be described.

Brilliant work, Vidad! I stand in awe, or more properly, in shock and awe.

Watch it!

Disclaimer: The producers wish it known that no beer was spilled in the making of this motion picture.