Why Not Eat Insects? by Vincent M Holt

September 20, 2017 7:13 pm by Crocodile

by Vincent M Holt

“Them insects eats up every blessed green thing that do grow, and us farmers starves.”
“Well, eat them, and grow fat!”

Nice little hundred-page paperback, originally printed 1885, reprinted in 1967, 1969, and 1973. Three reprints! Outlines in plain language why the custom of eating certain insects should be encouraged, which insects to avoid, and which animals we regularly eat that are much grosser than insects. Honestly it makes a pretty good case! If you eat (for instance) lobster, why not crickets? Lobsters eat literal shit, crickets eat grass or whatever.

The Bible says it’s OK, but the Bible says a lot of stuff that society ignores…

The technical term for eating insects is “entomophagy”, here’s the Wikipedia entry: [link]. A contemporary term for insects raised as food is “minilivestock” but I find that name irksome because “microlivestock” means small-size breeds of conventional livestock (miniature sheep, etc.). You’re gonna make mini smaller than micro? come on. I realize that you can’t say “nanolivestock”, but why not “picolivestock”? There’s a lot of prefixes at our disposal and pico is the cutest.

One curious thing about this is how the last word on each page is repeated at the start of the next page. This can’t have been for the benefit of the printer, because there are page numbers too. Maybe this was to help the reader?

Hell yeah. Love to see a weird niche served. Entomological Reprint Specialists, I salute you.

I showed this book to my friend Cool Breeze and he couldn’t believe it. “Why would someone write a book about why you shouldn’t eat insects? Seems obvious”. I told him it was about the exact opposite thing, then we figured out that he had been parsing the title in Hulk-speak. ala¬†“Why Hulk Smash” or “Why Hulk Not Trust Humans”.

I probably got this at a library book sale from my first job at the Worcester Public Library, sooo I probably paid under a dollar for it, and I’ve probably been carrying it around since… 1996? $1 in 1996 money is approximately $1.57 today, that’s still a great deal.

Generally my paperbacks are organized under: classics, sci fi, trashy, and weirdies. this one is filed under: weirdie

full scan of this one up on http://bugsandbeasts.com/whynoteatinsects/

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