Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Bringing home the bacon is a good thing... isn't it?

My son's vegetarian girlfriend doesn't think so, but I beg to differ

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If I am famous for anything, I am famous for my complete and utter devotion to all things bacon.

You could probably say the same thing about any guy of my gender -- bacon ignites our passion more than any other food item, including breakfast sausages, whether link or patty -- but in the land of bacon, I am king.

For instance, a couple of weeks ago, after I finished reading to 500 kids for I Love to Read Month, the school librarian, in a heart-rending act of kindness, showed her appreciation for my efforts by dipping into her book bag and pulling out a rare first edition of Moby Dick.

I am kidding, of course. What she pulled out and presented to me in front of everyone was a pound of delicious bacon. "If you read his columns, you will know Mr. Speirs LOVES bacon," she explained to the assembly.

Had you had been there, you would have seen all the guys in the crowd, teachers and kids alike, nodding their heads to indicate this made perfect sense, whereas the women and girls were sporting looks that conveyed the following emotional concept: "Huh?"

Just this weekend, my wife joined her sister and a friend for brunch and, at the end, her sister gave her a pound of bacon to take home to me because -- you are going to find this hard to believe -- when she looked in her freezer, she decided, quote, "she had too much bacon."

As I sit typing these words at my home computer, I can already hear male readers snorting in derision at the idea someone, presumably in their right mind, could believe it is possible to have "too much" bacon.

Anyway, when my wife walked in the door, she proudly displayed the bacon, which had all of us smacking our lips, with the exception of my son's longtime girlfriend.

"Ewwwwww!" is what she snorted in disgust.

"I beg your pardon?" I said with righteous indignation.

"Bacon is disgusting!" is what she replied.

By way of background here, I should mention my son's girlfriend is not just a vegetarian, but (and this is hard for me to say) she has never tasted meat in her life.

"That is totally unfair," I scolded her, emphasizing the point by making a frowny face. "You've never eaten bacon, so you don't know whether, deep down, you secretly love it."

Surprisingly, she did not accept this logic. "It smells like rotting flesh," she declared with what I suspect passes among vegetarians for a cruel smile.

I was undaunted. "That makes no sense at all," I noted, gruffly. "How about if I told you that I hated palm trees, even though I've never eaten a palm tree? How about that?"

I suspect I scored major points with the palm-tree argument, because she gave me the same look of confusion mixed with pity that I frequently get from our dogs.

"Next Christmas I am going to give you the Wake'n Bacon Alarm Clock," I informed her.

"What's the Wake'n Bacon Alarm Clock?" she asked, visibly puzzled.

I explained that, according to news stories emailed to me by several meat-loving readers, it is a clock made to resemble a pig and, when you go to sleep, you place a piece of frozen bacon inside and set the clock, then 10 minutes before your wake-up time, the clock starts cooking and you are welcomed into a new day by the heavenly scent of bacon-y goodness.

"Ewwwwwww!" is what my son's girlfriend repeated.

As a sensitive modern father, I sensed I'd pushed the bacon issue too far. "Maybe I could make you a nice BLT?" I said by way of a peace offering.

"A what?" she replied in a clearly suspicious tone.

"You know," I said as I walked away, "a broccoli, lettuce and tomato sandwich."

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition March 11, 2013 A2

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