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Sometimes dinner really bugs me

CamerBruce W.

Cameron, Bruce W.

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Updated: January 23, 2012 4:32AM



You may wonder why insects are causing so much buzz lately. It’s because people are eating them — and not just in order to get on Reality Television.

For example, in San Francisco, there’s a food truck named Don Bugito that serves such fare as tacos made with fried wax-moth larvae. Look it up if you don’t believe me. They also make food out of pallid worms, but I imagine when you hold the pallid worms up to the wax moths, the worms pale by comparison.

Eating bugs is called entomophagy — or, for short, gross. Most people don’t eat bugs unless they’re in the habit of riding motorcycles with their mouths open. In San Francisco, however, the motto is what the heck, we haven’t done anything stupid in a while, let’s chew aphids. People are lining up to pay big bucks for insects, because, well, they’re expensive, more costly than beef. (This makes sense, though — imagine how difficult it must be to ranch a herd of pallid worms. The branding process alone must take a huge amount of time. You can’t use a rope and lasso to catch them — you probably have to use dental floss.)

What do insects taste like? To answer the question, I checked around on the Internet because I am not going to eat larvae tacos myself. What I’ve determined after a lot of research is that insects taste like bugs. What did you expect? Insects are bugs. You know what eats bugs? Other bugs! Also snakes. And bats. And fish.

Take a woman on a date to a restaurant that serves insects, and she will rate you on the above animal scale. If you’re polite and funny, you might get upgraded from snake to fish, but that’s about the best you’re going to do.

And all over the world, of course, joke books are being revised.

Old joke:

Customer: Waiter, what’s this fly doing in my soup?

Waiter: I believe it’s the backstroke, sir.

New joke:

Customer: Waiter, what’s this fly doing in my soup?

Waiter: The fly is your soup, sir.

According to some sources, the United Nations is said to be very interested in insects as a food source.

For one thing, people are not likely to want to fight in wars if they are busy throwing up. For another, it appears that a few pounds of bugs can feed a lot of humans, mainly because everyone will refuse to eat them.

Actually what the article said is that bugs don’t emit greenhouse gases. Of course, neither do rocks, but it’s even harder to get people to eat those. Plus, rocks are heavy to ship, while bugs often fly themselves.

Kids: Mom, here comes a plague of locusts.

Mom: Dinner!

Kids: Yay! Can we also have rock salad?

The article went on to explain that bugs are a great source of protein. It did not, however, explain compared to what. Here’s the thing: If my protein’s going to come from insects, I don’t want it. I don’t consider any protein source to be great if it lives under my refrigerator. Bugs aren’t a great source of protein, they’re an irrelevant source of protein.

Chickens eat bugs. Chickens are an even better source of protein because they filter the insects through their system and turn them into buffalo wings.

Now, I know I’m going to get a bunch of email from fans of the bug-a-rito challenging me on my presumptions. They will chide me for making fun of insect-munchers because I’ve never actually eaten a delicious bug-from-a-truck myself. No, you’re right, and I haven’t eating the tires from a truck, either. They’re probably pretty tasty, as well. I saw an X-ray once of a man who had swallowed a light-bulb — I’m also probably not going to try that one. My unwillingness to try to eat things that make me retch might be the main reason I don’t live in San Francisco.

I don’t mind if other people chomp on moth larvae, though. In fact, next time you’re lying in the dark at night and you hear a mosquito buzzing around your face, don’t get irritated. Think of it as a midnight snack!

To write Bruce Cameron,

visit his website at

www.wbrucecameron.com



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