Thin Bacon Woman
It's been mentioned and threatened, so here's the retelling of Thin Bacon Woman.
Back in the days of yore, when I was but a relatively young Rapscallion without grey in my beard, I had the pleasure of dealing with Thin Bacon Woman. We named her this because that's all she bought. We sold fruit, veg, frozen food, canned food, packet food, dairy, flowers, and so forth. All she ever bought was a quarter of a pound of thin bacon. No more, no less - a quarter of a pound.
The bacon wasn't just thin, though. The only reason she came to us was because we had 'The Blade of Doom' - an ancient bacon slicer that had a grading scale that went beyond the call of duty. Medium thickness was number seven on the scale. A higher number was thicker, and the thinnest I ever cut was number five. She wanted it on number three.
Every three weeks, like clockwork, Thin Bacon Woman came in for a quarter of a pound of bacon on number three. The problem with the bacon on this setting was that it was too light to fall away from the roll, and it often ended up wrapped around the blade, or shredded, or just disappearing into the ether. I did some calculations and worked out that each visit of hers cost us half a pound of wasted bacon.
Still, we had only recently taken over, and it wasn't worth getting a reputation for kicking little old ladies out on their ear when they were only buying sixty pence of food every three weeks. Every three weeks, she turned up. Every three weeks, I cleared up twice as much wastage as I had sold. The routine set in, and life went on.
I was struggling with slicing her bacon one summer's day. It was a fairly fresh roll, and therefore it was wetter and sticking more to the blade. I watched more waste bacon than normal spin around the blade.
"Do you know why I like it that thin?" Thin Bacon Woman asked.
I glanced over my shoulder, but not for long. The Blade of Doom (tm) takes the unwary off to dark corners and does unspeakable things to them. "I assume you like it extra crispy," I replied.
"Oh no," she said, smiling happily. "It's because I'm a vegetarian."