Celebrate International Bacon Day on September 3rd

Bacon Strips
Source: Wikimedia Commons

September 3 is International Bacon Day! So unless you’re a vegetarian, you have no excuse for not pigging out on bacon today. (Excuse the pun, but not really). Here are some FAQs about bacon to help you celebrate International Bacon Day 2017:

When did bacon come into being?

Bacon Strips for National Bacon Day
Source: Wikimedia Commons

No one knows the exact day, but that’s just as well, because if we did it would become a global government-sponsored holiday during which citizens of the earth would all take to the streets with slabs of bacon in their hands and pray to the maker of the most wonderful invention since the wheel. Actually, forget the wheel: its only true purpose is to make it easier to get the store to buy BACON.

The word “bacon” derives from the German root “bak-“and means “the back of an animal.”

Bacon in some form or another has been around since 1500 B.C. There are records of the ancient Romans eating a primitive form of bacon. But it wasn’t until the 1600s that bacon as we know it today came about. Originally, it was eaten largely by European peasants, because it was cheap and easy to make.

In the 1770s, Englishman John Harris began producing bacon on an industrial scale. The first commercial bacon manufacturing company opened in Wiltshire, England. Today Wiltshire maintains its reputation as the hub of the bacon world. Sounds like a place I need to visit.

Today, over two billion pounds of bacon are produced annually in the U.S.

What’s up with the saying “bring home the bacon”?

Frying bacon in a pan
Source: Wikimedia Commons

Ever wished this expression wasn’t just metaphorical? Who wouldn’t love a guy that brought home LITERAL BACON from work every day?

This saying originated in the 1100s in Dunmow, England. Apparently the men of Dunmow had marital problems, and the clergy of the local parish church just couldn’t motivate them with promises of spiritual blessings and eternal salvation. Someone remembered the old saying that the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach, and decided to start a new initiative. So the church announced that any man who could swear before God and the church congregation that he hadn’t fought with his wife for a year and a day could bring home the bacon. Literally. No word on whether or not it worked.

Why is bacon so good?

Oh my friend, if we knew this we would probably be able to solve other eternally perplexing conundrums like world hunger, poverty, and the frustrating existence of turkey bacon. (It’s not real bacon.)