With Great Bacon Comes Great Irresponsibility

, , , , , | Working | July 23, 2019

I have just started a new job, so I’m anxious to make a good impression on the boss, especially since my new coworkers have already told me he is very strict. I haven’t had a chance to interact with him directly very much yet, but I’m trying my best to do all my work very carefully, turn everything in on time, etc.

One afternoon, I’m chatting with several coworkers after lunch, and we’re talking about foods we enjoy. Someone brings up bacon, and I say something generic and positive, such as, “Yep, bacon is great!” Just then, the boss walks around the corner, so we all greet him and then quickly go back to work. Later that afternoon, I’m working in my cubicle, and the boss steps in, saying, “I’d like to talk with you about something I overheard earlier.”

I’m terrified, thinking at the very least I’ll be in trouble for chatting when I could have been working, and at worst, I might have said something to accidentally offend him. But then he asks, “So, is it true that you love bacon?” Bewildered, I answer that I enjoy bacon as much as the next person. He stares at me for a few seconds, before launching into this long personal story, while I try not to let my mouth hang open in confusion and surprise.

It turns out that he and his wife are practicing Muslims, and therefore do not consume any pork products. At one point, he mistakenly ate some bacon, only to discover that it was delicious! Ever since then, he has been secretly eating bacon whenever his wife isn’t around, and he has been desperate for someone to talk to about all the delicious merits of this most supreme food. Unlucky for me, after he overheard my conversation earlier, he suddenly decided I would be his bacon confidant.

He talks at length about how much he enjoys eating bacon when no one is around, and how he has even been sneaking some to his young daughter — without his wife’s knowledge — because he believes it is too unfair to deprive her of this magical food. All the while, he is asking for my reassurance that his bacon-eating is okay, and I am absolutely speechless! Somehow he takes this as an affirmation and cheerily goes on his way, muttering about how happy he is to have someone to talk to about bacon, and what a relief it is to have this shared this secret.

For the rest of the time I worked there, about once a week my boss would randomly stop by my cubicle to extol the virtues of bacon, while I tried to avoid making any kind of statement whatsoever. I didn’t want to make any kind of comment on his personal choices, but I also didn’t want him to think that I was in favor of him lying to his family! Weird and awkward as it was, at least I had found a way to stay in the good graces of a strict boss. I hope he decided to come clean about his bacon secret eventually, and that everything worked out for him and his family.

Related:
With Great Bacon, Comes Great Responsibility, Part 22
With Great Bacon, Comes Great Responsibility, Part 21
With Great Bacon, Comes Great Responsibility, Part 20

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