Popcorn kernels popped in bacon fat sprinkled with a bit of salt. It’s simple, delicious – And who can turn down a home that smells like popcorn and bacon?
Following the Georgia 6 race, I remembered my super brief brush with politics. I was perhaps 17 and a family friend recruited my aunt and a few of us to knock on doors in the Projects of the Bronx, gathering signatures for a NY district Congress hopeful. I don’t quite remember her name anymore. Was it Darlene? Not sure. Something like that. Let’s call her Darlene something-something.
It was summer, I had nothing to do and so I volunteered. A few times a week we’d walk into a shared office crammed with teens, a few adults, and a mean looking old school pushy politician-type. He’d give us the ‘push for signatures’ speech. He’d claim we needed to push for these signatures, no matter what it took, otherwise Darlene couldn’t run. Meeting our signature goal would gain us a tight lipped smile and little to no signatures earned us some ‘We need these fucking signatures!’ and much table banging. Mind you, the majority of us were teens.
We’d ride piss-puddled elevators or stairs, floor after floor knocking on doors identifying registered voters, shoving a clipboard in their faces and asking they provide inexperienced kids their signature just so this chick could represent their district in Congress. I knew nothing about her. Her platform, her message. I froze and smiled like an idiot when someone asked me what she stood for, what she planned to do for the residents of Co-op City in the Bronx.
Shit, I hadn’t met this lady, yet I canvassed neighborhoods collecting signatures for her run. I saw her one time and she didn’t bother introducing herself to the majority of her volunteers. She had the face of a politician, and the personality of a binder clip. I didn’t like her.
Eventually I stopped collecting signatures because my efforts felt fruitless, because my message felt canned to my own ears. I didn’t believe in this chick. I didn’t feel she identified with the people of the Bronx (I lived in Manhattan then). I was a year away from voting and I already knew, Darlene didn’t have what it took.
I reflected on that last night, as I saw Jon Ossoff lose and Karen Handell win the Congressional seat in this special election. A total of about $50 million dollars was spent on this campaign, a campaign whose candidates will need to run again if they expect to maintain their seat in 2018. A year from now.
What the fuck is wrong with this picture? 50 million dollar can change an underserved county.
Instead, 50 million dollars were spent on ads and calls and knocking on doors. At the very end of it, amid campaign pledges, attack ads, and discarded signs on confetti littered floors is… Is no fucking message.
This morning pundits are wondering, where the fuck did Ossoff go wrong? Are the Democrats done? With everything swirling around this administration, he was a shoe-in, right?
Voters need to connect to a message on a personal level, especially when it comes to local politics. We see our politicians shaking hands and kissing babies right before election time. Before the election we’re bombarded with ads and robo-calls and people hitting us up for donations. And shit, we fall for it hook, line, sinker.
We now support our party, not the issues that are important to our communities. Our goal? To beat the other team like it’s a fucking basketball game. The message, the issues, what truly affects us on a day-to-day as citizens of these districts gets eclipsed.
Local politics are indeed local and this election garnered NATIONAL attention. Now ask yourself, after an expensive race – Is the person voted into to congress TRULY representing the needs of their district? I’m not so sure that’s what it’s about anymore. And this is true of Democrats, Republicans, and Independents.
It’s tough to leave politics to politicians these days, especially when $50 million dollars between two parties was squandered. We need to vote for someone who can truly connect with us on a personal level. Someone who can identify with the issues humans face daily. Someone with a message, with solid plan, someone who can show us how they plan to reach across the aisle. A person who is tailored to the districts they represent and not fueled by the agenda to beat one party.
We need to return to basics and we’re a long way off from that.
Now flow with me, let’s talk about this Bacon Fat Popcorn real quick. It’s just three ingredients – Bacon fat, popcorn kernels, and salt. I made some bacon the other day and I couldn’t throw away the delicious bacon fat at the bottom of the pan. This Bacon Fat Popcorn is the snack you make when you’re trying to live right, but bacon is life.
It’s super simple to make. Grab your favorite popcorn popper, add some bacon fat. Sprinkle salt. Pop the popcorn. Bacon scented popcorn, people.
Back to basics.
We need that.
Bacon Fat Popcorn
Pop your kernels, old school style:
Add bacon fat to a large pot with a lid. Add the kernels and salt. Stir to combine. Taste the bacon fat and salt mixture. Add more salt as needed. Cover the pot and set the heat to medium-high. When you hear the first sound of kernels popping, reduce heat to medium-low and allow the kernels to pop completely.
Every minute or so, give the pot a shake to ensure all your kernels have been hit with a heat situation (this will make them all pop).
Remove from heat, transfer to a very large bowl and enjoy immediately.
OR!! If you own a popcorn maker (like the bomb-ass Whirley Pop) pop your popcorn according to manufacturer’s instructions.