Photo by James Sutton on Unsplash

Using a gas grill

stainless steel gas grill attached to a propane tank on an outside deck.

How to use a gas grill

Santeri Viinamäki, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Let’s face it, using a Gas Grill can be…intimidating. For the longest time, it has been the gatekeeper to the world of the straight masculine man’s man.

After all, it’s basically one big gadget! It looks like there’s a lot that goes into it, so usually, we just let someone else handle things.

Honey, it’s time to set the record gay.

Grilling is for everybody, and nobody should feel intimidated by it! After all, it’s Pride Month! So, we’re here to show you how to use a gas grill in as little as three easy steps. THREE. ‘Aint nothing scary about that.

You’re going to need:

  • A Gas Grill
  • Small Fire Extinguisher
  • A Backup Gas Tank
  • Long Spatula
  • Long Stainless Steel Tongs
  • Paper Towels
  • Choice of Oil (Grapeseed, Canola, Olive, etc.)
  • Wire Brush
  • Spray Bottle (optional)

So, grab your cutest booty shorts and a crop-top, and let’s get cookin’!

Step1: Open It Up!

This is really two steps. You’ll want to open the lid so there’s no gas buildup when it’s initially lit and to get acquainted with what you’re working with. Cast iron or stainless-steel grates, all that good stuff.

Then it’s to the gas tank. All you’ll have to do here is turn the knob on the top counterclockwise all the way to let the gas flow to the grill.

Whether your grill uses natural gas or propane doesn’t make much of a difference in this case.

Step 2: Turn it on, and Heat it Up

man standing over a grill.

How to heat a gas grill

Photo by Vincent Keiman on Unsplash

There’s a few knobs on the front of the grill. If you’ve got an ignite button, just give it a push and adjust the knobs to turn the heat up. Or, without the button, just press the knobs in like you’re lighting a gas stove top and adjust the same way.

You can either crank them all up or just one side if you want a little more control over what you’re cooking. The side with less heat is easier for you to move food back and forth, but it’s really up to you!

Now close the lid, and let it heat up to about 400 degrees.

Step 3: Clean and Season the Grates

grilling food on a gas grill.

How to grill food on a gas grill

Photo by Evan Wise on Unsplash

You’re going to want to make sure the grill is clean before and after using it. Which is usually easier to do when it’s already heated up. Get all that gunk off, ya know.

Use the wire brush to give the grates a scrub and get it ready to use.

Then, just like cooking anything else, you’ll need to oil it up so everything doesn’t stick. So, get a cup half full of the oil of your choosing, and use the tongs to dip a few pieces of paper towel in. Apply the oil to the grates. This way is easiest so you can just toss the towels after.

Now you're ready to start grillin'! Honestly…that's all there is to it!

Step 4. Shut Down the Grill

Once you have cooked your food, make to turn off all the knobs on the grill and make sure you shut off the propane tank too. Scrape off the grill with your wire brush, dispose of any trash and shut the lid.

Pro Tips

  • Having your grill set up half super-hot and half less is the best way to make sure nothing is overcooked. Most gas grills have a small rack above the grates themselves that you can also use to move your items around. But in the other case, the half and half method is best.
  • A backup gas tank will make sure you don’t run out mid-grilling too. ‘Aint no gas gonna slow your roll.
  • A spray bottle filled with oil is a good way to re-coat the grill and give a light spritz to the food.
  • Don't put on the grill cover until the barbeque has completely cooled down otherwise you run the risk of burning the cover or melting it.

Now get out there and grill like a Queen!

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Like many of the recent Marvel Cinematic Universe films, LGBTQ+ fans awaited the release of Thor: Love and Thunder in open anticipation of the inclusivity that both Marvel and Disney had promised. However, the fans were only setting themselves up for disappointment when the film was finally released.

Despite passionate assurances from studio heads to key actors, Thor: Love and Thunder was NOT spectacularly gay. It wasn’t even that good…

Premiere Night Promises

A bolt of lightning cuts across a rainbow on a dark and stormy night.

Lightning bold across the sky

Photo by Bill D.

Standing on the red carpet at the London Premiere of the film, director and actor Taika Waititi and fellow cast members Natalie Portman and Tessa Thompson were offered up the inevitable question: “How gay is the film?

Amidst some laughter from the crowds, Waititi gestured towards Portman to respond. The actress (who plays Thor’s love interest, Jane Foster, throughout the franchise) raised the microphone to her lips and thought for a moment, before delivering a quiet yet fateful: “So gay!

Barely a moment had passed before the gathered fans went wild and Taika Waititi gave his own verdict: “Super gay!”. Tessa Thompson made no statement on the ‘gayness’ of the film, instead opting to swing her microphone around suggestively. As more cheers erupted, a second round of “super gay” slipped out of Waititi’s mouth, before he urged the fans to enjoy the film.

Thor: Love and Thunder’s LGBTQ+ Potential

Thor’s movie-goers were definitely hyped up for a gay extravaganza and they had a specific character in mind. The fan-favorite Valkyrie, played by Tessa Thompson, stumbled her way into the MCU during Thor’s third film, Ragnarok. The Asgardian warrior won many people over with her wit, sarcasm, and pure badassery.

After the events of Avengers: Endgame *spoilers*, Thor Odinson gives up his claim to the throne of Asgard and names Valkyrie as king in his stead. This left many fans excited to see what would become of the character, especially after certain revelations were made at the 2019 San Diego Comic-Con:

“As a new king, she has to find her queen. So that’ll be her first order of business.”

With these words, Tessa Thompson threw her LGBTQ+ fans into a frenzy, with heavy expectations for the then-upcoming fourth installment of the Thor films. Indeed, in an interview with the LA Times, shortly before the film's release, Tessa Thompson was asked to comment on the sexuality of her character. She responded with several promising remarks, including “there’s a lot of folks that are righteously very hungry for that representation to exist in these movies, as am I”.

*Warning: spoilers ahead!*

So, How Gay Was Thor 4?

To put it simply: not gay at all. Not only did Valkyrie end up without a fabulous new queen, her non-heteronormative sexuality only got the barest mention (a brief line about a previous, now dead, girlfriend). Valkyrie may have made bedroom eyes at some pretty ladies before an action scene spoils the moment, but that’s about as much as we get.

The film does get some credit for introducing a trans character in a minor yet significant role. Thor returns to his people (after a brief stint as a Guardian of the Galaxy) only to find out that the daughter of one of his closest (and deceased) friends is now a boy. The issue is, whether due to personal prejudice or some alien inability to grasp the concept of being transgender, it does take Thor a frustrating few moments to come to terms with the change. And to stop deadnaming.

In fact, the only concession to the queer community was Taika Waititi’s extraterrestrial character Korg finding a husband in one of the closing scenes. This heartfelt moment was somewhat underscored by the revelation that Korg’s entire species is male, meaning he had no other choice but to be ‘gay’.

This Is Not Marvel’s First Queerbaiting Attempt

Close up of an eye reflecting an unknown scene as a rainbow crosses the image.

Photo by Harry Q.

This is, by far, not the first time that LGBTQ+ fans have been sorely disappointed by the workings of Marvel and Disney. In fact, people across many social media platforms have been chiding expectant viewers for once again falling for classic queerbaiting tactics. “Being queerbaited by the MCU is like being a golden retriever with a human who always pretends to throw the ball”, one Tumblr user declared.

Captain Marvel, starring Brie Larson, was the perfect moment for the MCU to introduce its first lesbian lead. Larson’s character seemed to have an intense relationship with another woman, going so far as to help raise her child (before Larson’s Carol Danvers disappeared from Earth for 6 years). Despite leaning into several romantic tropes, the status of their relationship was never fully fleshed out. However, it was also the franchise’s first female-led superhero movie, so maybe they thought that introducing her as a lesbian would make the film too awesome.

The heavily anticipated Avengers: Endgame was also slated to introduce the MCU’s ‘first gay character'. While many fans were excited, particularly as this would be the second of Larson’s appearances on screen, the big gay build-up was a massive letdown. The film’s director Joe Russo made a cameo as a blip survivor mourning the loss of his husband. A five-second throw-away scene that had no impact on the outcome of the film. Big whoop...

Even when we did see a film with a gay lead, The Eternals, there were also ten other straight leads. At that point, it just seemed more like basic probability than an attempt at pushing LGBT+ superheroes into the spotlight.

Why Can’t Disney Let Marvel Be Gay?

The big problem with allowing a few characters to be anything other than cishet is that there are still many countries in the world that outlaw homosexuality. As much as we like to think that the MCU is being made for comic book fans, we all know the purpose of the films is to make money for Disney. And without certain markets in Asia and the Middle East, Disney wouldn’t be raking in up to (and over) one billion dollars per theatrical release.

Is There Any Hope For LGBTQ+ Fans In The MCU’s Future?

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, the second in the much-loved Black Panther arc, will be released in cinemas this November. The studio has confirmed that the film will contain a queer character. Actress Michaela Coel will play Aneka, a warrior, and trainer of the king’s guard. Whether or not her diversity will stand out in the film (let alone endure for more than a 10-second scene that can be easily cut) remains to be seen.

Next year’s The Marvels film, starring Brie Larson, Iman Vellani, and Lashana Lynch may offer the MCU a chance to redeem itself in the eyes of its LGBT+ fans. The studios may feel it’s finally time to offer us the heartwarming lesbian relationship between Larson’s Carol Danvers and Lynch’s Maria Rambeau that seemed to be teased in the first Captain Marvel. Don’t raise your hopes too high, though, as you may yet end up as a stubborn golden retriever waiting for a cinematic universe to finally throw that rainbow ball.