All I Have, I Owe to Pork Skin

I was feeling utterly miserable yesterday morning.  I had woken up with a fierce stomachache that felt like a thousand tiny knives in my gut.  I couldn’t figure out what would have caused it.  I hadn’t eaten anything strange (well, strange for me) or out-of-date or off-temp lately.  I swigged some Pepto and went about my day, trying to ignore the stabbing pains in my belly.

As the day dragged on, so did the pain.  It didn’t get any worse, just more irritating.  I kept waiting for it to go away or even just subside a bit.  The Pepto wasn’t doing anything and I didn’t have anything else at work to fall back on (ginger, for example, works miracles).  I drank bottle after bottle of water, trying to flush my system out, but without any luck.

Stomachaches — unrelenting ones, at least — are a rarity for me.  My family all has the stomachs of billy goats, cast-iron guts that can withstand food that would make a vulture sick.  True story:  I once drank the tap water in Mexico for a week straight before one of my friends caught me one day and bawled me out for being so stupid.  We weren’t in an “industrialized” area, either, all the more for her to fear that I was going to catch some deadly parasite and die from a horrific form of diarrhea.  Never happened; I was perfectly fine.

As lunchtime rolled around, our temp asked if I’d like to go grab some tacos at Guadalajara Bakery.  As miserable as I was, tacos were the last thing I wanted.  That’s when you know I’m really sick…  I politely declined and instead force-fed myself a simple salad that I hoped would clean me out.  …nope.

When he returned some time later, the temp had brought me some tacos despite my earlier protests.  Bless him.  They looked so good, with their homemade tortillas and neon green salsa verde.  “Your favorite!” he said.  “Chicharrónes!”  The soft, spongy chicharrónes stared up at me from their tortillas.  They looked like inviting little pillows.  Despite the horrible pain in my stomach, I couldn’t help myself.  I tore into them with abandon.

After quickly inhaling the tacos, I realized that within about five minutes my stomachache was completely gone.  I felt like a new person; like my stomach had been reborn.  It was a divinely-inspired, chicharrón-manifested miracle.

So here’s my new marketing strategy…  Forget about Pepto-Bismol, forget about milk of magnesia, forget about Tums, forget about ginger, even!  There’s only one guaranteed cure:

When your stomach hurts and you don’t know what’s wrong, try a bite of chicharrón!

See?  It even rhymes.  I’m going to make a fortune, people…


The Zythophile

I think I have a new favorite foodie blog (well, more like ale and lager blog, but let’s not split hairs):

The Zythophile

Read, for instance, this fascinating post on the spurious history behind the “traditional” ploughman’s lunch served in pubs the world over.  I feel seriously vindicated now, as I never liked the pissant little bits of lettuce and cheese and pickle that comprised a ploughman’s lunch anyway, and always wondered how that rabbit food could be considered substantial or hearty enough for a field laborer to eat for lunch.

Also awesome: Fraudulent Ale Questions, where the author debunks various myths about beer, including some myths that I’ve never even heard of, such as:

Medieval ale-conners wore leather breeches and tested ale by pouring some on a wooden bench and then sitting in it and seeing if they stuck to the bench.

Apparently quite false.  Who knew?

And, of course, there’s a short but sweet section on the underappreciated art of beer and food pairing.

The beer snob in me has found a new home, folks!