I love everything about bacon, including Francis, Roger, and the twentieth-century painter Francis (whose models look like they ate a lot of bacon). I drool like a dog at Beggin Strips commercials. I once bought a wallet that looked like it was made out of bacon. I've come dangerously close to joining the Bacon of the Month Club. That's how much I love the greasy, salty, crispy meat I'd put on everything if I could. So when I found out Iowa hosted an annual Blue Ribbon Bacon Festival (this year it's held on Feb. 17), I decided right then and there that, goshdarnit, DesMoines has never gotten its due respect. And then I consulted Google Earth to find out exactly where this illustrious city was located.

The festival features bacon recipes that would never occur to you: bacon gumbo, bacon-flavored cupcakes and gelato, chocolate bacon bourbon tarts. There's an eating contest (sign me up!), a bacon queen pageant (I'll pass), and a pig pardon by the governor (aw, shucks). The mockumentary, "State of Bacon," celebrates "bacon fellowship." The 2017 festival will travel to Reykjavik, Iceland, of all places. Bjork does bacon. Who knew?

Curious about bacon - I mean, who isn't? - I researched it and discovered there is an app sponsored by the Oscar Mayer Company called "Wake Up & Smell the Bacon." You set your phone alarm so you can wake to the sound of bacon sizzling. If you have a headphone jack (those lucky souls who don't have the latest iPhones), you can plug in a device that emits a bacon-smelling puff. I just might start waking up to an alarm again. And if I wake to the day that turns out to be my last, this is what I want for my final meal: champagne, potato chips, and skillets full of bacon to usher me into the Great Beyond.

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