You know it’s time to stop blogging about bacon…

When people start handing you clippings from the newspaper and say things like, “This story about chocolate-covered bacon made me think of you!” So this will be the last bacon post you’ll read on this site for awhile.

But let me go down swinging. When I was a kid my parents would take my Halloween candy away to have it X-rayed to be sure there weren’t any razor blades or samurai swords hidden inside my Reggie Bar.  Now our children face the terrifying reality that their candy may contain [gasp!] bacon. Is this not kosher? Certainly not. Is it dangerous? Only if you are genetically pre-disposed towards high-cholesterol. Is it gross? Depends on what you think is gross (gribnes anyone?). So why do I raise the alarm about bacon nation?

It’s not that I advocate strict observance of kashrut or even that I think Jewish culture is mortally threatened by bacon consumption. When a culture has survived dispersion, persecution, genocide and the abomination that was Chicken Soup (Jackie Mason’s sitcom), then it can probably outlast pork bellies.

No, what causes me such great concern about bacon is that for a long time it has been trying to gain a foothold outside its traditional domain as breakfast food (along with the occasional lark in a BLT). Perhaps bacon started getting fancy notions when orange juice ran the “It isn’t just for breakfast anymore” ad campaign. Perhaps bacon thought, what’s o.j. got that I don’t have? That’s when it started showing up in cheeseburgers. Pretty soon it was in potato chips, salads–okay, we said, we can see the logic of why someone might want bacon in that.

But now, it has run amok. Bacon coffee. Bacon Candles. Bacon Ice Cream. Bacon Mints. Bacon Bubbles. Bacon Vodka. And yes, Bacon Chocolate. All these bacon products are undoing all the cultural good worked by Matisyahu. How can we respond? How do we hold back the bacon deluge? What are you going to tell your children when they look you in the eye and ask, “Daddy/Mommy? What did you do in the Bacon Culture Wars?”

That is all. The rest, is up to you.

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Bacon Nation–Getting Uncomfortably Close

As part of our continuing effort to keep the public updated on the rise of bacon as the balsamic vinegar of the aughts, I bring you the following:

On my way home from Pesach I stopped at a high-end Whole Foods (is there another kind?) that had a special section devoted entirely to chocolate and confections. My wife pointed to a display of chocolate bars and my eyes went wide as eggs-over-easy: Chocolate Bacon! Or is it Bacon Chocolate? The Bacon Menace SpreadsEither way this is a disturbing new twist in the aggressive bacon expansion in our culture. Bacon vodka, bacon lollipops, bacon bras and now bacon in our chocolate! And friends, this is not some abstract threat limited to the green room of Iron Chef America, it is right here at our back door as reported this morning on 14th and You.

Ladies and Gentlemen. We do not object to this bacon uprising out of petty religious parochialism (although I hate feeling left out of a culinary craze that at once indulges my basest cravings and still somehow manages to make me look sophisticated). We object because it is gross. We object because, really, isn’t obesity enough of a problem? We object because, what starts out as satire ends up as reality…

Bacon-Cubed and Cleaning the Anacostia

If you take your blog-reading seriously, then at this point you’ve probably heard about the bacon bra–the sort of bizarre cultural curiosity that only internet can make possible. Last week we mentioned the rise of a new and disturbing bacon lollipop. Now word reaches us of bacon vodka. Isn’t there some rule of three that should have us all very, very worried right now? According to Arlo Guthrie, doesn’t three incidents of gratuitous and bizarre bacon usage indicate an underlying organization?

Ask Randy BaconFor answers we suggest you speak to our resident expert and New Orleans native, Randy Bacon, the Director of the Behrend Builders and co-director of the 16th Street J’s Spring into Action Day of Environmental Service. There are still some slots left for this project taking place this Sunday, April 13 at the Kenilworth Park and Aquatic Gardens. Volunteers will clear litter from the Anacostia, (both from the shore and from canoes and kayaks in the river) help remove non-native, invasive plants and renew recreation areas throughout the park. If you’ve never been, the Aquatic Gardens are one of DC’s hidden gems, and your volunteer work is needed to help it continue to shine. Tucked away in Northeast, the gardens are the only Federal Park that displays cultivated aquatic plants. They’ve got waterlillies you could float a large child on (not recommended). It’s a day to reconnect to our city, our environment and to our responsibility to both.

And if you see Randy, you may also learn what is behind the preponderance of pork products in posts here and elsewhere.

Shabbat Surfing–Go Nats!

NationalsJeremy Burton, writing at J.Spot overreacts to Bush’s “christening” of the new National’s ballpark. Trust us. President Bush notwithstanding, the opening of the ballpark was a giant Bar Mitzvah for the District. The Lerner family, owners of our beloved Nats, have even included a special column dedicated to Jewish slugger Hank Greenberg (a Detroit Tiger) in the new ballpark, plenty of Kosher food options and davening during the seventh inning stretch. This is not to say that there is not a susbtantial evangelical Christian presence in baseball, but not every example of religion in the public sphere need be interpreted as hostile to other religions.

DC’s LGBTQ magazine Metro Weekly has an issue entirely dedicated to queer Jewish life around the coming holiday of Passover. Highlighted in the issue is a feature article about GLOE’s Stonewall Seder which was held this past Sunday at  the HRC. Also given substantial ink is Congregation Bet Mishpachah which meets for services regularly at the 16th Street J.

Have you been over on the Theater J blog? Ari Roth has been at the forefront of reaction to a poll question put out by American Theater Magazine regarding a proposed cultural boycott of Israel (although it’s not clear anyone is currently advocating for one). Ari’s strong response to the ridiculousness of the exercise and the dozens of responses he received in return grabbed the attention of The Forward. The weekly newspaper is featuring the kerfuffle on the front page this week.

We seem to be all over the press this week, with a great write up of the Rapid Responsa in the Washington Jewish Week.

Briefly noted: Virtual Talmud shuts down at beliefnet.com.  The British chief of Formula One auto racing makes Eliot Spitzer look wholesome. Organic Bacon lollipops–both treyf and disgusting. Heeb presents its own zombie film with a NSFW Night of the Living Jews.

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