There are few occasions where being a vegetarian is particularly depressing, and most of them involve social gatherings around a grill. I don't know from experience of being one. But I have dealt with the annoyances of having to cook for one in less than ideal, carnivorous circumstances like the Fourth of July.
In college, the vegetarians always stood out at a tailgate like the one token bisexual male in a women's studies seminar. They'd come bearing a package of partially thawed Boca burgers in their book bag and patiently hover by the grill with hungry eyes, waiting for a spot to open up that wasn't completely contaminated with burger residue. These frozen veggie burgers are a sad affair in the best of circumstances -- like, at 3 a.m. after all the pizza places are closed and you're thanking the campus gods that there is one last garden vegetable patty in your roommate's fridge. But next to thick beef burgers causing flare-ups on the fire because they're dripping with authentic juicy goodness, no amount of char marks will make your meal feel less like cardboard.
But being the lone vegetarian at a BBQ doesn't have to be a bummer. Here are some of my favorite easy meatless meals off the grill that will be as at home on your table as a 250-pound linebacker at a Rocks For Jocks class.
-- Phoebe Lapine of Feed Me Phoebe