This past week I butchered a hog in what felt like record time (about 2 hours) and it didn't even hurt. At first I thought the reason it went so quickly was the combined result of a good night's sleep, sharp knives, a new saw blade and, well, rock star butchers don't dawdle for god's sake. However, I later realized that part of what made the work go so fast was the relatively huge amount of soft intramuscular and extramuscular fat. The fat was so soft that the knife just whizzed through like striped bass fry through a school of bluefish.
Too bad soft pork fat makes the meat no good for aging more than a couple of months. The unsaturated fatty acids that make up the bulk of the fat molecules in soft fat oxidize and become rancid more rapidly than saturated fatty acids. So none of the hog that I cut last week is going into anything that needs to age for a long time and most of it became chops, roasts and fresh sausage.
Here is a slide show of me taking off some of the bacon.
This group of pictures shows pork bellies being prepared for hanging in the aging room.