As mothers all around the country prepare the traditional Thanksgiving turkey, side dishes, and desserts, we here in the Cook household are more concerned with the pursuit of an untraditional and different delicacy altogether. All because of a teensy little white lie.
Our son, Noah, is a finicky eater. We don’t really know why, but even as an itty bitty infant, we had to tickle the palms of his feet and blow on his face to accomplish a complete bottle feeding. Nine years later, meal times still frustrate us. Not him, but definitely us. Joel, who has never met a meal he didn’t like, has threatened to have him DNA tested to be sure he really is a Cook.
Additionally, Noah fancies himself as an outdoorsman. He has a bow and arrow with a practice target, a Red Ryder BB gun (yes, I have warned him he’ll put his eye out), a Wii big game hunter game, a pellet gun, and camouflage clothing galore. He actually shot a bird at some distance off our back deck this summer. And, although I hoped that he would be saddened by the bird plummeting from the tree to the grass, it only encouraged him. Even Granddaddy telling him about shooting a bird in his youth with his BB gun and his father mournfully telling him, “Now we’ll never hear that bird sing again” did not deter Noah from dreaming of future hunting glory and bigger game conquests.
One night earlier this summer Joel heard Noah and a friend playing the Wii game and heard them whooping and hollering that they shot a wild boar. When Joel fixed breakfast the next morning of eggs and bacon, Noah piddled around until Joel suddenly, and believing himself to be oh so clever, said that this wasn’t just any bacon, no, it was wild boar bacon. Plain bacon? Not interested. Wild Boar Bacon? Ravaged within minutes.
Only one small problem with that first stretching of the truth: does such a dish even exist? Now multiple breakfasts have gone by and the wild boar bacon fudging continues. Noah eats it with gusto. Joel hedges and says that he isn’t sure if the grocery store will have it in stock. Noah asks expectantly and hopefully every morning, “Dad, is this the wild boar bacon?” And, Joel, for whom truth is paramount–see the The Ninth Commandment — finds himself stuck in a trap, a steel claw trap around the ankle of his integrity from which he can not escape.
Until tonight. One of Joel’s friends posted on Facebook that her husband has returned from a deer hunt. The husband did not shoot any deer, but is returning triumphantly with a wild boar. Joel posted right away to her hoping to secure bacon, and acknowledging the problem he has created, which I have typed below exactly as the posts appear on Facebook:
“Mary: And so Leo is on his way home with ‘no big buck’ but he did get a wild boar! Ugh!!! What to do??? He thinks this should excite me as much as it did him….Not!
Joel: I need wild boar bacon. No joke. Noah was playing a hunting game several months ago in which he shota wild boar. In an effort to encourage him to eat I told him the bacon I was cooking was wild boar bacon. Now he thinks he is one of the few people who have ever had wild boar. I’ve got to get him some actual wild boar now. What a tangled web we weave.”
Yes, darling. What a tangled web. Good luck with that. That trap looks a little rusty.