To That Very Nice Australian Woman I Met In Malaysia

I’m sure that in Australia, “Tayla Ham” is a perfectly reasonable name for a human female — the internet tells me there are many of you. It’s just that in New Jersey, America, there’s a processed pork product that is both beloved as a breakfast item and also the subject of much contention, because half the state calls it “pork roll,”* and the other half calls it “Taylor Ham,” and each half thinks the other half is SO WRONG.** It’s like the Great Schism, but for breakfast meats.

And I am, of course, from New Jersey.

Anyway, I’m sorry that I snickered to myself whenever I saw your name written down, and I’m sorry that I spent two weeks secretly calling you “Pork Roll” in my head. It has nothing to do with you, and you are in no way reminiscent of a pork roll other than being inadvertently sort-of named after it.

Now that you are back in Australia and I’m back in the US and the chance of me ever again seeing you in person has dropped to virtually nil and I therefore run little risk of accidentally calling you Pork Roll to your face, I had to get this off my chest.

*I.e., the correct half of the state.

**But seriously, the part of the state that calls it Taylor ham is SO WRONG.


  1. Here in the UK our much derided cuisine is known for it’s amusing and/or offensive names.

    Toad in the hole, for example, or spotted dick.

    Secretly calling someone one of these in your head is a minefield.

    (Oh there he is, spotted dick…did I say that out loud?)


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