I am beginning to understand how keeping Kosher is possible, despite the existence of bacon. For a long time (27 years), I was convinced that keeping Kosher was impossible. My brother is an Orthodox Jew, living in Israel. He is in the process of becoming a rabbi. He keeps strict Kosher rules bordering on self-torture and I fear he is malnourished. In the states, his choice of restaurants is severely limited. In Houston, for example, he is confined to about four establishments.
Flash backwards 15 years (TV segue ‘whoosh’ sound). My immediate family sits down for dinner at a salad bar. My little brother sits down with a plate full of only lettuce and bacon pieces. My dad explains to him that, as a child, he is forbidden from eating pork. ”Why?” asks Andy. ”I don’t know. Never question irrational, outdated rules,” he answers. ”Be careful what you wish for, Dad.” ”I’m not wishing for anything, I’m just telling you that as a Jew, you’re not supposed to eat pork, among other things.” ”I take your challenge, and accept it. You have no idea what I will become.” ”Good, let your hate consume you. Give in to it. Then, you will be one of us.”
Whoa don’t know where that came from. The real conversation was a lot more normal, and a lot less Star Wars. My father was raised as a Conservative Jew. I remember his father once telling me to not eat bacon. I thought he was joking. ”Haha Papa,” I would say. ”You must be kidding. For nothing will ever come between crispy, salty strips of pure cholesterol and me.” Why would G-d be so cruel as to deprive His people of His most magnificent creation? That’s right, bacon was more important than the invention of human beings, and buffalo wings.
If you are reading this, and have never eaten pork products (most importantly bacon), I am not trying to tempt you to break your moral code. I am saying that bacon is so delicious that it transcends food, and belongs in a category all its own. I understand that the only way that religious Jews can keep from eating bacon is to never try it in the first place. Therefore, they will not be tempted by the intoxicating grasp that it has on my soul. It is to food what Charlize Theron is to women. Keep in mind, neither is Kosher.