Are You Aware That Taco Bell Was Named After a Man Named Glen Bell, Not After a Literal Bell?

Photo: Getty

On Wednesday evening, the New York Times published reporting about efforts to influence a Trump fundraiser into an “instrument of influence at the White House” for United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabian interests, and that one actor in this plot is now cooperating with special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation. Blah blah blah, scroll down, more down.

Screenshot: New York Times

There it is, in black and white and computer blue: The founder of Taco Bell is a man named Glen Bell.

This is shocking to me, personally, as someone who’s never put much thought into the origin of Taco Bell—what did I think a taco bell was, even? A bell you ring when you’re ready for your tacos? That’s something I invented on my own, for my household staff—the founders of the Bell wouldn’t have known about that. A bell tower that indicates when it’s Tac-o-clock? Also, a fantasy. But for the Bell of Taco Bell to be named after a guy who’s just named Bell? That’s unexpected.

Sure, this isn’t news to the world. Bell (the man) received the appropriate amount of news coverage for a white man who founded the Mexican fast food chain responsible for the Doritos Cheesy Gordita Crunch.


He even has a biography, Taco Titan: The Glen Bell Story, that I have just ordered, in which he (per the New York Times, who revisited it in his 2010 obituary) described what it was like to watch the first customer buy the first taco from his Bell’s Hamburgers and Hot Dogs stand in San Bernardino in 1951.

“He was dressed in a suit and as he bit into the taco the juice ran down his sleeve and dripped on his tie,” Bell wrote. “I thought, ‘Uh oh, we’ve lost this one.’ But he came back, amazingly enough, and said, ‘That was good. Gimme another.’”


Can you imagine: A man in a suit who isn’t afraid of a little beef juice! Your man could never.

This revelation has me thinking outside the bun. Have a great day.

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