Bacon, Lizzie Borden and the Dunmow Flitch Trials

Last night I was scrolling around the internet to see what’s special about July 19. At first, there wasn’t much to get excited about. Bloody Mary becomes Queen of England. World’s first GPS signal. Lizzie Borden’s birthday. But wait, what’s this? National Flitch Day? Quickly, I do the “research” (meaning, I call out to Eileen.)

Me: What’s a flitch?

Eileen: Gesundheit.

Me: No, really.

Eileen: Google it.

Turns out, a flitch is bacon… as in half a pig, cut lengthways. National Flitch Day is an old English custom in which married couples could win a flitch if they convinced a jury of six maidens and six bachelors that during the past “twelvemonth and a day” they had not “wisht themselves unmarried again.” I am not making this up. The Dunmow Flitch Trials date back to the 14th century and were so popular they were even mentioned in the Canterbury Tales, when the Wife of Bath dissed her husband by snarking that he wouldn’t bring home the bacon from Dunwmow. Immediately, I started planning a Morning Toast Flitch Trial, complete with Bloody Marys, Canterbury Cocktails, and Judge Bobby. That’s when I noticed that National Flitch Day is actually July 9 and the Flitch Trials are only held during leap years. Oops. Never mind. On the other hand, it’s only 723 days until the 2020 Flitch Trials. Pencil it in. And, in the meantime, we’re going for a three-peat with another Pop-Up Party at the Pint Size Park this Saturday. See you there!

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