The Internet loves bacon. This current generation of young, Internet savvy folk have seen to it that bacon is now less of a food as much as it is a punchline for a “hilarious” joke about making food better than it previously was, regardless if it actually pairs with the food in question. The thing is, it was totally hilarious and awesome…at first.
Bacon’s pretty great. Better than, really. Bacon is what takes cheeseburgers and turns them from slightly better sandwiches to the mouth orgies they are. It takes salads without protein and sprinkles amazingness on all of the healthy, nutritious boringness. But unfortunately, due to our recent over-internetting of bacon, maybe we should love it a little less.
The reason I say this is because advertisers and old white people have figured out that young people who like to buy things just love bacon. So now we have giant, festering piles of products that are bacon-flavored despite nature’s insistence that bacon remain bacon and refrain from crudely inhabiting everything else.
You might not currently be aware that this is a problem, and honestly I was among you until Scope unleashed their April Fool’s Day prank this year:
Bacon-flavored mouthwash. It was probably the most finely crafted April Fool’s prank of the year, because it just made sense. It was the perfect prank. Something believable enough to actually exist, yet stupid enough to make you incensed.
When you really get down to it and put it alongside the many bacon-flavored products that are out there today, it’s really not any less believable than the rest of them. When I realized just how quickly I bought into Bacon Scope being a thing, I had to examine some of the other bacon-flavored products that have come onto the market.
Some things have just the right quality to be infused with the crisp, smoky deliciousness that is bacon. Bacon-flavored popcorn, for example, is a fantastic idea. Though you should really just put little pieces of bacon in regular popcorn. I had some at Chicago’s Revolution Brewery recently and trust me; it’s way better and includes actual bacon.
But this past Christmas, though thankful for gifts and the warm, caring presence of my family and blah blah love and values and whatever the d#$k, I also received a bacon-flavored candy cane. The candy cane didn’t really taste like bacon, it just tasted like a candy cane someone found at the bottom of a coalmine; smoky, but in the exact wrong way. It was far unlike a good rye whiskey or just, y’know, regular bacon. Just smoky like dying in a fire.
In addition to those atrocities exist things like bacon toothpaste or bacon lip balm, which will both make kissing you like making out with a dead, burnt pig. You can make as many “Haha, but everyone loves the taste of bacon so I’ll be totally okay with tasting your dead pig flavored tongue swishing around in my mouth” jokes as you want, but I’m calling your bluff. No one actually wants that and you’re a monster.
There are also bacon-flavored cupcakes and bacon-flavored beer, which are both foods that should never mix with bacon. There’s something to be said for sweet and savory pairings, but with the cupcakes it’s more like pairing sweet with greasy meat, which I really just don’t see meshing well with cake.
As far as beer goes, I hate to keep hammering a single point except oh wait I don’t, JUST HAVE BOTH SEPARATELY. The main problem I have with combining bacon with other foods is that most products are made with a wanton disregard for actual flavoring, and are just made with the process of “HEY THIS IS GOOD AND THIS IS GOOD LET’S STUFF ONE IN THE OTHER ONE UNTIL IT’S ONE THING.” Then the flavors of both are diluted in some awful attempt to Frankenstein the once proud, separate entities. You could just have really good bacon and drink a really good beer, but the artificial flavoring of the beer makes it just a probably weird tasting beer.
Probably the weirdest one is the as yet unreleased bacon-flavored condom, developed by J & D’s, a company that seems committed to spitting in God’s face and shoving bacon into all that which God had wrought un-bacon’d. Remember how it didn’t sound great just making out with someone who tasted like a dead pig? Well imagine if their most private parts also tasted like bacon. Then they put that in you. And you had bacon flavoring inside of you. Your most sensitive, interior parts now taste like bacon. If I were lucky enough to be in the act, as it were, with some lucky lady (sorry), I would risk fathering a child that I definitely am not at the maturity or financial level to take care of rather than put them through that.
I am definitely a supporter of scientific progress, but this is one of those instances where science is just wrong. Like every day when we decide to let mosquitoes live. We need to revert to our natural state and just let bacon be bacon. We can absolutely combine it with other wonderful flavors to create fantastic foods like bacon cheeseburgers, BLTs, frittatas, and succotash. But trying to make everything be themselves and also bacon is the wrong approach.
Let’s just allow bacon to be what it is on its very own: delicious. And also not in people’s vaginas. Or butts.
Patrick is a writer and comedian living in Chicago. He still loves bacon and would encourage you to put it on your next grilled cheese. With some avocado. Mmm. Yeah. He’s got a Tumblr where he puts up doodles and lists and you can follow him on Twitter @fatfraud.
We’ve previously extolled the virtues of bacon in Brian Cullen’s send up of the Baconery Cafe and Patrick last told us to maybe give it a rest on some overused stuff with his take on the current state of zombification.