OK, so, long story short: The Derecho knocked out our power friday night. Saturday morning, I went down to start up the generator. I think the gas had sat in it too long. In any case, it didn't start. Took off the air cleaner: nothing. Put in a brand new spark plug, didn't help. Drained the bad gas, put in new. Still nothing. Added some degunker to the gas, let it sit. Nada.
So I went to the autoparts store and got some Berryman. And some starter fluid. Came home, and tried the starter button. It ran a moment, and died. Encouraged, I started trying new things. Turns out as long as I spray starter fluid into the carburetor, it runs. That tells me it's getting air, and spark, and isn't seized up. But as soon as I stop spraying, it sputters and dies. If I let it sit for ten minutes, it starts, runs a few seconds, and dies. The carburetor has a drain screw, if I turn it, gas comes out, so I know gas is getting from the tank to at least the drain bowl on the carburetor.
I'm completely stumped. Any ideas? I'd like to get it fixed before the next round of thunderstorms knock us out again...