Yesterday I made the perfect batch of barbecued pork ribs. Accomplishing this was no less important than the first time I watched Rebecca Demornay in Risky Business, the first time I wrote a check to pay a credit card payment, or suffering through my first divorce.

At some point on that day, yes I wrote it on my calendar, I crossed over the line that took me from just being the guy with a spatula to a certified grill master.

I do consider myself a purist in that I choose to use charcoal instead of gas. This requires more skill and attentiveness. A minute spent going inside after the sauce could mean out of control flames and the difference between charcoal and charbroiled depending upon what you are preparing.

Anyone can throw hamburgers or steaks on the grill. If you overcook them kind thoughtful family members are likely to respond with something like this "no really, we like our burgers a little crispy." If you take a steak off too soon and it is red in the middle instead of a little pink these same people could respond, "you know if you overcook a steak you take away some of the flavor."

Ribs on the other hand require preparation. You have to know what you are doing before you actually do it. Barbecuing ribs is a thinking man's sport, much akin to chess.

No one can say that I do not have a flair for the melodramatic.

Fail at your task and you do not need confirmation from your guests. You know it. You see the sadness in their eyes. Shame and disappointment is what you are seeing.

Succeed and you receive the admiration of your loved ones. You will hear more "oohs" and "ahhs" than you do at the Fourth of July fireworks. If you are lucky more than one person will say, "If I eat another bite I think I'm going to throw up."

I shall reveal the most crucial steps in the process. I will not keep it a secret. Everyone shall know. 
Keep in mind that this is my method for cooking country style pork ribs. Baby back ribs would require a little tweaking concerning the preparation of the meat.

Let us begin. You must use moistened hickory chips spread atop the charcoal. Duh.

You must boil the ribs for at least one hour before you even think about putting them on the grill. You can keep soaking the ribs in the water if you place them in the refrigerator. There are those who recommend this. I do not think this is necessary.

You must wrap the whole batch (not each individual rib) of ribs loosely in aluminum foil. It is a good idea to coat the aluminum foil with cooking spray. Yes they will stick to the aluminum foil if they are tender enough.

Place the ribs on the grill for ten minutes wrapped like this to encourage the meat to cook through without burning.

After ten minutes open the aluminum foil up and poke holes in the bottom to allow the hickory smoke to waft through the meat.

Slather the meat with your favorite sauce on all sides and continue cooking until done.

This should result in juicy, moist, fall-off-the-bone, mouth watering ribs that you can be proud of.

I could reveal my sauce recipe but that would be expecting a little too much. I am generous, not crazy.

Dan Bimrose is the creator of coffeeandprozac.com [http://www.coffeeandprozac.com] a website devoted to making people think, laugh or cry. Daily Opinions, Editorials, and Stories [http://www.coffeeandprozac.com] He suggests dropping bread crumbs so that you can find your way back on a daily basis.